A heated debate between Australian farmers and vegan activists has resurfaced and gone viral, highlighting some popular misconceptions about ethical farming practices.
The debate, hosted by YouTuber Hammad Chaudhry, featured Tash Peterson and Jack Higgs, two staunch vegans, lined up against Sascha Squires and John Martin, two farmers.
Kicking things off, Chaudhry asked Peterson to elaborate on her claim that “if you aren’t vegan, you’re an animal abuser.” In response, she stated that all animal industries, including meat, dairy, and egg, are “inherently abusive” and murder animals for profit.
She then uses several examples to make her point, starting with pigs, which she says are typically six months old when they are “forced into carbon-dioxide gas chambers” to “burn from the inside out.” Next, she claims that the dairy industry is similarly unethical for taking calves away from their mothers so they can be milked for human consumption.
Finally, Peterson argues that these unethical farming practices are the biggest “Holocaust” in history, resulting in over 3 trillion non-human animal deaths per year.
Rebutting her statements, Martin, who runs a goat farm, tells Peterson she is “talking a load of sh*t,” adding that the goats on his farm are not “raped” or “artificially inseminated.” Instead, he explains, reproduction occurs naturally as the bucks run with the female goats “in season.”
Continuing to debunk her claims, Martin expounds that he lets the mothers nurse their kids and only takes the excess milk for profit.
In response, Peterson doubles down, accusing Martin of abusing his animals despite the fact he had outlined how he treats and feeds his animals to her moments before.
The debate continues for just over thirty minutes, during which time the vegans continue to argue that killing animals for food is unethical and a vegan diet is a more sustainable and healthy lifestyle. The farmers, in response, stand by their animal agriculture practices, arguing that it’s necessary for food production and their livelihood.
While the debate was initially published on YouTube earlier this year, a clip from the video began circulating online yesterday after Twitter user @TheAussieHun shared it with the caption: “Aussie farmer to vegan activist: ‘You are talking a load of shit.’”
Sydney Watson, Editor in Chief of The Publica, also shared the clip on Twitter, garnering over 300,000 views from users showing their support for the farmers.
“Delicious. This clip and the prime rib I’m having right now. LOL,” replied user @KatKanada, a political commentator based in Canada.
Following up on her Tweet, Watson also points out that Tash Peterson, the animal rights activist featured in the debate, has a website called Vegan Booty, where she provides resources for other activists, talks more about her journey with veganism and directs people on how to get involved in the movement.
“I have now learned this lady is called ‘Vegan Booty’,” she writes. “And her website is a trip. Wowee.”
The debate concludes with farmer John Martin confessing that he is “basically a vegetarian” because he eats animals that eat plants and vegetables. Adding that he is “just eating a value-added product” before exiting the studio to sounds of applause.