I headed back to Philly this morning for another few hours of leafleting. It went really well, and was surprisingly fun.
We had four of us this time, two of us on two different corners outside a Whole Foods. It was a good location – we had a nice stream of foot traffic, and potentially influenced people on their way to buying food. There were several notable people, including a nice number of vegans and vegetarians.
One woman does an Animal Rights and Companion Animal Care themed radio show in Portland, Oregon on KBOO. I couldn’t find the show on the program schedule, but I have to say the station looks awesome! She and her husband were in Philly for his cancer treatments, and she had big props for Cancer Treatment Centers of America. Apparently they do a mix of holistic and western medicine, and are advocates of patients helping direct their care. Organic foods are also featured. She says her husband is doing well, they expect a full recovery. She’s already vegan, but was happy to take the recipes I included on the back of the leaflets I was handing out.
The recipes are how I got several people to take the leaflets. I am happy I did that – my hope was that people would take the leaflet and keep it for the recipe, and maybe think about the info on the other side.
We did get a couple people claiming they “tried” vegetarianism and couldn’t do it because of protein deficiencies. While difficult to believe, after all I’ve read about nutrition and knowing how rare true protein deficiencies are, these are people who you have to just smile and let pass by. No logic or science will sway them from their perceptions on their own experiences. “It may work for everyone else in the world, but it doesn’t work for me, and my experiences are the proof of this.” How do you argue with that? I don’t bother.
Several people said that they “believed in that” when we told them the leaflets were about factory farming. *scratching of heads* Not sure what they meant, but they did take the leaflets.
We also had a guy say he loved his meat, and wouldn’t give it up. He did agree to read the information, and smiled as he said so. I know he really will, too. I suggested he could eat less meat and eat it less often, and he seemed open to that as well. You never know…
There was the guy on the bike who admitted that he had just recently gone vegetarian. We gave him props, as well as some recipes. Maybe he’ll end up going vegan sooner than he would anticipate. There was also another vegetarian who said he “believed in all that” and had friends who were vegan, but he personally felt it was too hard and too restrictive to be vegan. I told him that vegan recipes were easy and delicious (while pushing my vegan chili and cornbread recipes on him), and that it had more to do with finding recipes you liked than anything else. And that there were lots of cookbooks out there, and more coming out all the time. He seemed open to this.
I really felt like our influence was more to the vegetarians and “almost vegans” today. Perhaps not surprising standing outside a Whole Foods, but they are also proponents of “humane meat”, which is troublesome to me – an oxymoron is what it is.
However our leaflets dealt with debunking the myth of humane farming, so perhaps we had more of an effect on the meat-eaters than we realize. We can only hope.
As I walked back to my car, I ran into two guys who were just starting to leaflet for Hugs for Puppies. We had a quick chat and exchanged leaflets. It was really a perfect way to end the day in Philly. There was a lot of leafleting happening in Philly today. I can’t help but to smile to think about it.