U.S. Senator and presidential candidate Bernie Sanders rails against the American health care system, prescription drug companies, and out of control medical costs. He believes climate change is a real and present danger and combating it must be among America’s highest priorities. He has also been a strong proponent of workers’ rights. As a result of these positions, it would follow that he does not eat animals. But he does. Senator Sanders admits to being a passionate meat-eater. While we appreciate his positions on many issues and commend him for tackling topics such as Wall Street malfeasance and the need to rebuild our infrastructure, no presidential candidate is impervious to criticism, especially a politician occupying such high ground. Here is a list of five hard-hitting questions for Senator Sanders.
On Climate Change
1. You state we need to address climate change. Methane and nitrous oxide from cattle negatively impacts climate change more than carbon dioxide from transportation. Why do you continue to voraciously and unapologetically eat steak and hamburgers if you’re serious about combatting climate change? Why don’t your actions reflect your political position? Why don’t you have the mercy and vision to lead by example on this issue and stop eating animals which is the most effective way to reduce your carbon footprint?
On Eating Animals
2. You suffer from gout, a condition often caused by an overconsumption of meat. It has been well-established that eating plant-based food is healthier. Why don’t you transition for health reasons, especially given widely available, affordable, more sustainable, and delicious, plant-based meats?
On Health Care
3. You express your discontent with the American health care system, a system many people rely on as a result of contracting heart disease, cancer, and other diseases and medical conditions from eating animals. As part of your platform to reform it, why don’t you promote the healthier eating of plant-based food and the subsidization of plant-based food companies rather than animal agriculture to reduce people’s need for health care, thus simultaneously reducing costs.
On Animal Rights
4. You have been recognized for your positive voting record on animal rights issues. Your votes, however, are largely on issues such as land protection, horses, and other wild animals but not farm and marine animal protection which comprise approximately 99% of all animals killed in the world. Given your oft-repeated message that you speak for those without a voice, will you take a stand for the trillions of farm and marine animals confined, abused, transported, and slaughtered for food?
On Workers’ Rights
5. The majority of animal agriculture employees have no health insurance, no union, suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder, and work in dangerous conditions. Many of them are also undocumented and lack the most elementary job protection. Given your support for worker’s rights, why would you directly support an industry that profits so significantly while exploiting people so ruthlessly?
Even your close friends are getting on board by offering a new dairy-free ice cream.
Come on Bern, the animals could use your help.