I'm A Farmer And I Couldn't Care Less About Your Vegan Diet

I'm A Farmer And I Couldn't Care Less About Your Vegan Diet

I really couldn't care less what your diet choices are.
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Before anyone jumps to conclusions or gets offended, give me a chance to explain. These are my two best friends, Sarah and Pamela, and we have very different diets.

Sarah has been a vegetarian since long before I even met her. Pamela exclusively breastfed my godson as a baby; due to his food allergies, it was easiest for her to eat an almost entirely vegan diet. But me? I'm an omnivore. I'm a third generation family farmer and a retired livestock showman, and I honestly couldn't care less if someone chooses to be vegan or not.

For some reason, this surprises people, like I'm supposed to be personally offended by others' diet and lifestyle choices. I promise you, I do not care. I believe that everyone has the right to make choices about how they live their own life. Don't want to eat meat or consume any animal byproducts? That's awesome! Send me a creative recipe I can use to get my nieces and nephews to eat vegetables. Want to strictly eat beef jerky for the rest of your life? While that might not be exactly a well-balanced diet, be sure to send some samples my way. (Okay, that might be a slightly exaggerated example but you get the picture.)

When I say I don't care, I don't mean that I don't see or accept their choices as valid. They're completely valid and I do see them. When Sarah, Pamela and myself do dinner together, guess what? Our meal is normally vegetarian or completely vegan depending on what we decide to make. (And our recipes normally turn out delicious, but that's beside the point.) When I say I don't care if you're vegan I mean I'm not going to judge you or take personal offense to it like people assume I will.

I was raised in and around the agricultural industry, I've seen all the practices first hand. I genuinely believe in them ethically and I enjoy playing a small part in feeding the world. Other people don't agree with or support all of the practices involved in animal agriculture; that's okay too. It's not everyone's cup of tea and I'm not here to judge them because of it. It all goes back to the fact that I believe everyone has a right to exercise their freedom to choose how to live their life.

SEE ALSO: Why This Animal Science Major Cringes Through PETA's Website

I'm more concerned about who you are as a person than about what you eat or don't eat for dinner. I'm much more inclined to be friends with a vegan who respects differing opinions over a meat eater who judges everyone that's different from them. Over the years I've been called a murderer, a psychopath, heartless, cold-blooded and every other word in the book by others that don't agree with my choices or practices. I've learned to not let it get to me, especially as someone who writes about the agricultural industry online. If you result to blatant disrespect over civil discussion then it's not worth letting it get to me.

The reason I farm is to feed people no matter what their diet choices are. Whether you're a meat eater, a vegetarian, a vegan or an Apache attack helicopter I don't care. No matter how you choose to live your life or fill your stomachs I'll still be farming to keep food on all of our tables.

Cover Image Credit: Blake Fox

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9 Things All Mexican Food Addicts Know All Too Well

Don't come between me and my Mexican food.
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In the city I grew up in, there is a Mexican restaurant just about every five miles. They are the after school hangouts and first date go-to's for most of the kids here, especially the high school girls.

I know the servers at my favorite one know my order almost every time I go in there (at least once a week). However, a lot of people apparently get tired of eating Mexican food about twice a week... but I sure don't. If you are a Mexican food addict like me, I am sure you know at least a few of these yourself.

1. Cheese dip tastes like heaven and you have to have it.

That amazing creamy white cheese dip put on a perfectly salted chip is enough to make your day better. Forget the actual food---we'd be content living off of cheese dip and chips for the rest of our lives. Our restaurant trip is not complete without an order of it and if you are lucky enough to get your favorite waiter, maybe even get a large bowl for the night.

SEE ALSO: An Ode To Queso, My First And True Love

2. You never have to look at the menu.



We know when we decide to go what we are having and it is probably the exact same plate we order each time. I am sure the servers laugh after I order some days because there is only three things I rotate between. My burrito is always my go-to, unless I am feeling fancy.

3. Some of the servers know who you are when you walk in the door.

Either by first name or by order they know us. You are the ones that they tell to pick your own seat and already have your drink order placed by the time you sit down.

4. Your boyfriend/ girlfriend puts you on Mexican restaurant restriction on date night.


You drag them there so much, they get tired of eating there. So much so, they flat out say no when you ask to go there on date night. I mean, how does someone get tired of Mexican food to begin with though?

SEE ALSO: The Perfect Skin Color For A Mexican?

5. You can hum some of the songs that come on.

We may not know what they are saying in the song, but we know the song---trust us. We are in there so much we remember them. Don't ask any questions when we start humming.

6. You "have" a parking spot.

Do not park in my parking spot that is not actually my parking spot, but is my parking spot. Got it? Just do not do it. That starts my meal bad when you take my normal spot.

7. You used to hangout there all the time after school.

It was the hangout spot. Forget the nasty school lunch--- everyone goes to eat Mexican after school. It's the cool thing to do and it started your addiction.

8. You always want to introduce new people to your favorite restaurant.

Oh, you aced that exam? Let's go eat at this amazing Mexican restaurant I love! We always want to find people to go there to eat with so we always introduce new people to it.

9. People always pick on you about your addiction.


Yes, I love Mexican food. Go ahead and tag me in all the memes on Facebook about tacos. As long as I have my Mexican food, I am fine with that.

All in all, we LOVE our Mexican food and our go-to restaurants--- so here is your warning. Don't come between me and my Mexican food.

Cover Image Credit: jenaroundtheworld

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The 3 Best 21st Birthday Gifts For Your BFF

Cheers to 21 years!

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It's an odd time in your life when half of your friends go out to the bar on Saturday night and the other half sits in and watches movies. Now, depending on your friend, you have three ways that your 21st birthday gift idea can go.

1. For The Chill Friend

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If you have that one friend who always seems to be the rule follower and doesn't ever really go out and let their hair down, there is only one way to go: Lots Of Liquor. It's finally there chance to go out and get crazy. You, as their honorary bff, have no choice but to go all out and get them a full on basket of individual liquor bottles, bottles of mixers, and goodies to snack on! Another gift you're going to be obligated to throw in, though they may not notice, is that you'll be deemed the responsible one. Switch roles for a night and make sure your friend isn't totally re-tasting what they'd eaten for dinner... you want them to at least last through the pregame.

2. For The Party Friend

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We've all got the friend who's been breaking rules since they were able to walk. High school came around and you weren't even the least bit surprised that they were pregaming the football games in the parking lot. So, to them, happy 21st just means they can throw away their fake ID and use their real one. If this is the case, it's safe to assume they have all the necessary alcohol they want and they also already know what they like. The best gift to a party happy friend is a nice recovery basket for the next day. This should be stuffed with all the necessities, Advil, Pedialyte, and other the other day after must-haves.

3. For The Normal Friend

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All of our friends are not going to be crazy, out-of-hand rule breakers or goody-too-shoes. Sometimes you're going to have a friend who plays by the rules... most of the time. If this is the case, there is only one way to go: a little bit of both. You could probably be safe with a cute hand painted wine glass and a bottle of their favorite, but where is the fun in that? They know enough about alcohol to assume they will surely need that hangover kit the next day, but not enough to have it stocked and ready to party on their big day.

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