In today’s (as always ad-free) podcast episode, I explore the profound concept of magnanimity and its application to everyday living, drawing inspiration from the teachings of Aristotle and Thomas Aquinas.
Delving into the philosophical roots of magnanimity, I unravel its significance in fostering personal growth, resilience, and compassion in our daily lives.
Drawing inspiration from historical figures and modern examples, I explore how magnanimity — defined as a generous and noble spirit — contributes to living a compassionate life.
“It is a serious thing to live in a society of possible gods and goddesses…There are no ordinary people. You have never talked to a mere mortal.” ~C.S. Lewis
Compassion has always been the foundation of my work and life, and it is the topic of my next book, A Year of Compassion: 52 Weeks of Living Zero Waste, Plant-Based, and Cruelty-Free.
Compassion is why I’m vegan. But veganismis not my goal. Compassion is.
I don’t strive to be as vegan as I can be. I strive to be as compassionate as I can be.
When we think being vegan is the destination to reach, we treat it as an ideology and obsess over trying to be perfect and pure.
I don’t live according to veganism. I live according to compassion.
Compassion vs. Sympathy, Empathy, and Altruism
Personally, I find compassion to be one of the most powerful, universal, and life-altering human experiences, and I also find it to be gravely misunderstood.
So, as we continue to explore this topic together, let’s start with the basics — the difference between sympathy, empathy, altruism, and compassion.
Sympathy involves understanding and acknowledging another person’s emotions and feelings, especially in times of difficulty or suffering. It’s about showing concern, support, and care for someone’s well-being. However, sympathy doesn’t necessarily require a deep emotional connection or putting oneself in the other person’s shoes.
Empathy takes things a little deeper; it is the ability to experience for yourself some of the pain that the other person may be experiencing. It is an acknowledgement of our shared experience as humans and recognition that we all feel grief and loss and pain and fear. You do not need to have experienced exactly the same events as the person who is suffering, but you do need to have the ability to really imagine how they must be feeling in their situation.
Empathy is a vicarious experience – if your friend is feeling afraid, you too will experience a feeling of fear in your body; if they are sad, you too will feel sorrow. Feeling empathy is allowing yourself to become tuned into another person’s emotional experience. It takes courage and emotional resonance. Altruism:
Altruism refers to the selfless concern and actions taken for the well-being of others, often without any personal gain or expectation of reciprocation. Altruistic behaviors involve helping, supporting, or benefiting others with genuine kindness and concern, though it may or may not be accompanied by empathy or compassion — for example, making a donation for tax purposes — but it is driven by a desire to make a positive impact on someone else’s life.
Compassion combines both empathy and altruism. If empathy is the ability to experience the feelings and pain of another, compassion translates that feeling into action. Compassion involves an empathic response as well as altruistic behavior, but compassion is characterized by feeling empathetic toward someone’s struggles and understanding their pain — and then taking action to alleviate that suffering.
It moves us emotionally, but it moves us to ACT. Action is the key difference between sympathy, empathy, and compassion.
We’ll return to this topic again and again, including:
what the fundamental principles of compassion are
how compassion is so misunderstood
why having compassion for people who do wrong does not condone bad behavior
how to cultivate compassion
and so much more. In the meantime, the etymology of these words might also be a helpful way to differentiate between them.
Etymology of Sympathy, Empathy, Altruism, and Compassion
Sympathy: The word “sympathy” comes from the Greek word “sympatheia,” which means “fellow feeling” or “community of feeling.” The term is formed from “syn” (together) and “pathos” (feeling or suffering), reflecting the idea of sharing emotions with others.
Empathy: The term “empathy” originated from the German word “Einfühlung,” which translates to “feeling into.” It was used in aesthetics to describe the process of projecting oneself into a work of art. It’s derived from the Greek “em-” (in) and “pathos” (feeling or emotion).
Altruism: The word “altruism” has its roots in the Latin word “alter,” meaning “other.” It was introduced into English in the mid-19th century and was used to describe the principle or practice of unselfish concern for the welfare of others. The term “altruism” was coined by the French philosopher Auguste Comte, derived from the Latin “altrui” (of or to others).
Compassion: “Compassion” comes from the Latin word “compassio,” which means “suffering with.” The term is formed from “com-” (together) and “pati” (to suffer). It signifies the act of sharing in the suffering of others, demonstrating a deep understanding and willingness to help alleviate their pain.
What are your thoughts about compassion? I would love to hear from you.
As a history enthusiast and passionate animal advocate, I firmly believe in acknowledging the pioneers whose efforts shaped the modern animal protection movement in the United States. In my podcast episode, Animal Advocate Monuments and Memorials (Part One), I explore the lives and legacies of four remarkable individuals who dedicated their lives to fighting for animals: Henry Bergh, George Thorndike Angell, Caroline Earle White, and Jack London. Join me I reveal the memorials and monuments that honor their invaluable contributions to a more compassionate world.
Henry Bergh: A Trailblazer for Animal Rights
Henry Bergh, a visionary and tireless animal advocate, founded the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) in 1866. His mission was to protect animals from abuse, cruelty, and neglect. Bergh’s groundbreaking work led to the passing of the first anti-cruelty law in the United States.
To enforce the newly established animal cruelty laws, Bergh pioneered the idea of humane officers. These officers were appointed by the ASPCA and empowered with the authority to investigate reports of animal abuse, cruelty, and neglect. They had the legal right to enter properties, seize mistreated animals, and arrest individuals responsible for harming animals. This was a groundbreaking and innovative concept at the time, as it marked the first instance of law enforcement officers being specifically designated for animal protection purposes.
Today, he is remembered as the “Father of the Animal Rights Movement” and honored with memorials that celebrate his pioneering efforts.
Henry Bergh Monument, Bridgeport Connecticut
P.T. Barnum, the famous showman, circus owner, and unlikely friend of Henry Bergh paid for Henry Bergh’s memorial in Bridgeport as a tribute to the visionary animal advocate’s significant contributions to the welfare and protection of animals.
Water Trough for Horses in Honor of Henry Bergh and the ASPCA in Central Park
The bathtub-shaped granite trough at Central Park’s Sixth Avenue entrance commemorates Henry Bergh, the ASPCA founder, and provides fresh water to animals, known as the “mute servants of mankind.” Donated by Mrs. Henry C. Russell in 1908, its original location is unclear, but later found at Kennedy Airport’s “animal shelter” and then brought to City Hall Park.
Mausoleum and Sculpture Honoring Henry Bergh in Greenwood Cemetery, Brooklyn
The beautiful bas relief sculpture honoring Henry Bergh in Greenwood Cemetery, Brooklyn, was thoughtfully installed as a permanent loan below his grave, coinciding with the anniversary of the founding of the ASPCA, a testament to his enduring legacy in championing animal welfare and protection.
George Thorndike Angell: Champion of Animal Welfare and Humane Education
George Thorndike Angell was a prominent lawyer and animal lover who established the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (MSPCA) in 1868. His advocacy extended beyond legal protection, as he also focused on education and awareness to promote humane treatment of animals. Angell’s legacy lives on through his organization’s continued efforts and the monuments that pay tribute to his invaluable work.
Monument to George Thorndike Angell in Boston, Massachusetts
George Thorndike Angell’s monument in Boston, Massachusetts, is a poignant tribute, commemorating his significant contributions as the founder of the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (MSPCA) and his unwavering dedication to improving the lives of animals.
George Thorndike Angell Grave, Mount Auburn Cemetery, Cambridge, Massachusetts
George Thorndike Angell’s grave stands as a tribute to his tireless advocacy and pioneering work for animal welfare, leaving a lasting legacy in his efforts to protect and care for animals, as the founder of the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and the Band of Mercy.
Caroline Earle White: A Visionary Advocate for All Beings
Caroline Earle White was a dedicated animal activist and the founder of the American Anti-Vivisection Society (AAVS) in 1883. She passionately campaigned against animal experimentation and cruelty, advocating for the abolition of vivisection (the use of living animals) in medical research. White’s commitment to the cause and her organization’s achievements have been commemorated through various memorials that highlight her unwavering dedication to animal welfare.
Caroline Earle White Memorials
While there are no physical monuments dedicated to Caroline Earle White that I am aware of, her legacy lives on through the numerous animal drinking fountains built in Philadelphia, inspired by her advocacy. Additionally, her enduring impact is evident in the American Anti-Vivisection Society (AAVS), which continues to champion animal rights and the abolition of animal testing. Stay tuned for more on fountains and Caroline’s remarkable contributions in Part Two of our “Monuments to Animal Advocates” podcast episode. (Listen to Part One here.)
Caroline Earle White is buried in Laurel Hill Cemetery in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Jack London: An Outspoken Voice for Performing Animals
Jack London, the renowned American author and social activist, displayed an unwavering determination to end animal performances in circuses during the early 20th century. Recognizing the cruelty and exploitation faced by animals forced to perform tricks for public entertainment, London used his influential platform to speak out against such practices. Through his powerful writings and advocacy, he raised public awareness about the plight of circus animals, urging for the abolishment of their use in shows. Listen to this episode (and read this blog post) about how London successfully inspired Ringling to remove animal acts in the early 1920s — and how his hometown of Oakland inspired the closing of the largest traveling animal circus 100 years later.
Jack London Square in Oakland, California
The most notable example of a remembrance of Jack London is Jack London Square located in Oakland, California. This waterfront district was named in his honor and features a life-size bronze statue of the author, commemorating his literary achievements and contributions to social activism. There’s also a statue of a wolf (in honor of Call of the Wild and White Fang, the still-open saloon he used to write in called Heinold’s First and Last Chance Saloon, and a replica of his cabin in Alaska. There’s also Jack London State Park in Sonoma County and the remains of the home he built that was destroyed in a fire.
Our use and abuse of farmed animals is universal — wherever you are, whatever country you visit.
pigs, turkeys, chickens, and cattle brought into this world only to be raised to be killed for human consumption
goats and cows bred to be milk machines, only to be killed when they’re no longer productive
donkeys and horses bred for use — often sold to be slaughtered for human consumption
Such were the stories of the animals we met in Italy.
BUT as much as cruelty and desensitization is universal, so is COMPASSION AND ADVOCACY.
We include visits to animal sanctuaries on all of our Joyful Vegan Trips (where possible) because not only is it meaningful to connect with animals, it’s also so meaningful to meet good people around the world doing vital work to protect animals:
Asking for Help is a Gift for the Giver as well as for the Receiver
Lots of healing is taking place at the Patrick-Goudreau household, and the troops have rallied.
It’s at times like these that the kindness of strangers and the generosity of friends becomes apparent and quite extraordinary.
When we were picking up a knee scooter from a complete stranger I met through my Buy Nothing group, she shared a number of helpful suggestions for me to make sure I heal smoothly and safely — having just gone through a much more serious break that required surgery and left hardware in her ankle to fuse her bones back together.
She suggested I set up a webpage telling friends near and far about the situation we’re in and letting them know about specific needs we have that they can volunteer for if they’re able and willing.
At first, I was reluctant to do so, feeling like it would be an imposition on my already-busy circle of friends. But then I remembered an incident several years ago that further embedded in my mind the belief that asking for help isn’t just a gift for the recipient; it’s a gift to the giver as well.
If We Don’t Tell, They Don’t Know
I was walking in our neighborhood and encountered a friend I hadn’t seen in awhile and immediately noticed a splint on her finger and a brace on her wrist. With concern, I asked what had happened, and she told me of an accident she had that resulted in a broken finger (among other things). I asked her why she hadn’t reached out and told me. She said she didn’t want to bother me, because she knew I was busy.
I found myself holding back tears. The last thing I ever want a friend to feel is that they can’t ask me for help.
Compassionately and sensitively, I communicated to her that by not asking me for assistance, she denied me the opportunity to show my love and friendship to her. And that even if I couldn’t help her, at least I would have known that she was suffering and could have extended my sympathy.
As I grappled with whether or not to ask friends for help, I remembered that experience with my friend and thought that by sharing our situation, the people who care about us would at least know what was going on and have the option of helping if they were willing and able.
So, I set up a page on GiveInKind, and sent it to our core circle of friends — even those who live far away since GiveInKind also offers the option to purchase gift cards for Whole Foods, Uber, DoorDash, etc.!
The response has been overwhelming, and everyone has thanked me for giving them the chance to show their support.
Healing Takes a Village
With a wheelchair + scooters all over the house, I’m coping well enough, but not being able to put any weight on my broken ankle for at least a month, I obviously can’t prep veggies, cook extensive meals, do dishes, clean litter boxes, water my gardens, or do all the daily things that make up a life.
My dear friends Lori and Milena came over for some girl time on Friday night, and Milena slept over, taking care of all the above needs + more! The next morning, after I was safely showered and dressed, she left; and a couple hours later, my goddaughter Jennae arrived with flowers and a delicious lunch from Burma Superstar, one of my favorite restaurants in Oakland.
Jennae was 10 when I volunteered to tutor her at her grammar school, and it turned into a mentor / mentee relationship. She’s now 33, and when she came on Saturday, she brought the young woman she is now mentoring — following in our footsteps.
Milena returned in the evening (with flowers from her garden!), and we settled down in the den to eat leftovers and watch a movie, and — once again — took care of everything that’s difficult or impossible to do when you’re incapacitated — unmaking the bed, closing the shades, putting a water glass on my nightstand, getting me tea ready for the next morning, carrying my iPad and laptop, and so much more.
Early the next afternoon, as Milena was heading out for good, my friend Michael came over with sandwiches from Ike’s, and after straightening a few things up, left me to some much-welcome solitude and quiet.
Come evening, I was grateful to welcome my dear friend Ellen, who arrived with flowers (from her garden!) and a delicious dinner of homemade ramen, veggies, and tofu, plus wonderful company, conversation, and wine.
Ellen snapped the cover photo of me icing my ankle with boot in one hand and a glass of vino in the other, feeling grateful for all the support and enveloped by all the love.
If we don’t ask, we don’t give others the chance to respond.
First and foremost, of course, is the fact that everything I teach is vegan, but after that, a world of possibilities awaits! I’m inspired by different cuisines and cultures, spices and flavors, textures and techniques, but mostly what I desire is to inspire someone to get into the kitchen to create food that will nurture, nourish, and delight.
Engaging the Senses
Cooking is a sensual experience in that all of our senses are engaged, and our experience of eating begins long before we start chewing — what a dish looks like, what the kitchen smells like, what a recipe is called, what a food sounds like during preparation or cooking, and what it feels like to touch it with our hands, our teeth, and our tongue. What memories are evoked.
I consider all of these factors when developing my recipes and crafting my classes, and the greatest gift for me is to know that one — even just one — of my recipes may become part of someone’s repertoire. That they will follow instructions I’ve carefully considered. That they will make culinary tweaks and tickles to adjust it to their liking. That they will enjoy the process as much as the result.
Join a Class in 2023
The first half of 2023 is scheduled out, and I hope you can join me. Click on each to book your spot, and enjoy a discount when you book more than one class. 𝐅𝐄𝐁𝐑𝐔𝐀𝐑𝐘: Cozy Colorful Soups (Purple Kale and White Bean Soup, Six Shades of Red Soup, Brazilian Black Bean Stew)
𝐉𝐔𝐍𝐄: Plant-based Food and Wine Pairings (Join me and my partner-in-wine (i.e. my husband) for this special class in which we provide a comprehensive lesson for the best red, white, and rose wines and the plant-based foods they pair with.) If you can’t decide, remember 𝐆𝐈𝐅𝐓 𝐂𝐀𝐑𝐃𝐒 are also available!
The classes are fun, interactive, and live in real-time! This means, I see you, you see all the other participants, and you see me cooking in my Oakland kitchen and answering your questions. What’s more: you receive all the recipes in advance of the class and a video recording of the class after it’s over.
What type of cooking classes or recipes are you looking for? Comment down below.
Depending on what you focus on, you can find reasons for despair or reasons for hope, and this episode is all about giving you reason for some optimism. Listen to the episode Good News for Animals: 10 Reasons for Hope, and for a full account of these 10 good-news stories, along with links and photos, visit the blog post called Good News for Animals and Nature (2022).
As another year comes to a close, I wanted to give you 10 reasons to be hopeful for animals and nature by focusing on some good news from 2022. Depending on what you focus on, you can find many reasons for despair or many reasons for hope, and I’m here to you some of the latter. (You can also listen to the Food for Thought podcast on the same topic.)
Make no mistake, however: optimism is not complacency.
Acknowledging victories provides an opportunity not only for well-deserved celebrations, but also for examining what tactics are working and what projects we may want to get involved in or support.
My hope is not complacent; it’s provisional. It’s the difference between wanting things to change and taking action to facilitate that change.
And so, here are 10 Reasons to be hopeful for animals and nature — just from 2022 alone!
1. Companion animals are no longer considered inanimate objects under Spanish law.
While it might be obvious to you and me that animals are sentient beings, this is not reflected in civil or criminal law in most places. While “livestock” animals are still considered property in many cities and countries throughout the world, more and more, dogs and cats are being given legal status that protects them in both criminal and civil cases. With the passage of this law in Spain, the welfare of dogs and cats must be considered in divorce proceedings, for example. They will no longer be able to be seized, abandoned, or separated from one of their human guardians in the case of a divorce or separation, without their wellbeing and welfare being taken into account.
2. In Wyoming, miles of fencing are being removed to help wildlife migrate.
Scientists conservatively estimate that more than 600,000 miles of fences crisscross the American West, hindering wild animals from moving around freely and safely. In some cases, the fences are simply left-over remnants that were erected decades ago and no longer serving any purpose. In others, they were constructed with little thought about their impact on other species.
Today, through an emerging field of research known as fence ecology, land managers and conservation groups in the United States are increasingly aware of how fences can harm wild animals. And they are beginning to push for fence removal or replacement as a solution that many otherwise-at-odds constituents can get behind. In Wyoming, the Absaroka Fence Initiative — a public-private partnership between willing landowners and land managers — sees volunteers, landowners, and federal agencies working together to help wildlife by removing miles and miles of fencing.
3. 400 years after they were hunted to extinction, beavers are now a protected species in England.
As of October 1st, 2022, it is illegal to deliberately capture, injure, kill or otherwise disturb the charismatic rodents, who have reclaimed a foothold in their native land in recent years. Beavers — known as “nature’s engineers” because of their industrious dam-building skills — create wetlands, which are an important habitat for many plants and animals. In doing so, they also prevent flooding and drought-related problems such as wildfires by keeping water in the land. While new incoming governments can always change this law, this is welcome news for now.
4. The largest wildlife crossing in the United States breaks ground.
In April 2022, construction began for a long-awaited a $90-million wildlife crossing above the US-101 Freeway in Agoura Hills in southern California. This is the result of a 20-year campaign to create an easier path of travel for mountain lions, foxes, and other wildlife to cross 10 lanes of Highway 101 without encountering a single car.
The efforts to save both animals and people have led to a proliferation of road crossings for animals along traditional migration routes and other crucial locations around the world. The practice originated in France in the 1950s and quickly spread to the Netherlands, which now is home of the world’s longest wildlife bridge at .5 miles (.8 km). According to the Federal Highway Administration, about 300,000 wildlife collisions happen on U.S. roadways each year, and those are just estimates. Many smaller animal deaths never get reported. This new bridge will save thousands of lives.
5. Australia’s Great Barrier Reef shows the best signs of coral recovery in 36 years.
Two-thirds of the Great Barrier Reef in Australia recorded the highest amount of coral cover in nearly four decades. While the reef is still vulnerable to climate change and mass bleaching, these latest results demonstrate the Reef can still recover in periods free of intense disturbances. The Great Barrier Reef has suffered from widespread and severe bleaching because of rising ocean temperatures. “What we’re seeing,” said Dr Paul Hardisty of the Great Barrier Reef Foundation, “is that the Great Barrier Reef is still a resilient system. It still maintains that ability to recover from disturbances.”
6. 200 nations agree to a landmark deal to promote biodiversity and save species from extinction.
The UN biodiversity conference, known as COP15, has been considered the last chance for nature’s recovery. One of the most significant parts of the pact is an agreement to protect 30 per cent of nature by 2030. This ‘30×30’ target is one of the biggest land and ocean conservation commitments in history. The deal includes a pledge to conservation in the developing world and protections for Indigenous peoples’ rights. Governments also agreed to take urgent action on preventing the extinction of species at threat from human activity and promote their recovery.
7. The largest U.S. climate legislation in history was signed into law.
The Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) commits $370 billion to combat climate change. Aimed at slashing greenhouse gas emissions to around 40% by 2030 and curbing consumer energy costs at the same time, it is the largest federal response to climate change in history and will set the course for substantial changes in how the nation produces energy over the next decade.
Major provisions include major new or expanded funding to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases, encouraging a domestic supply chain for electric vehicles and energy storage systems, promoting agricultural practices that capture carbon dioxide, expanding offshore production of energy (both fossil and wind), and providing federal support for energy efficiency. The IRA also includes dozens of new and extended tax credits for renewable energy, electric vehicles, electric transmission, and related industries.
8. In Europe, wolves, brown bears, and white-tailed eagles are making a dramatic recovery.
Some of the top predators are thriving in Europe, according to a major new report commissioned by Rewilding Europe, a charity working to restore wild spaces across the continent. Effective legal protection, habitat restoration, and wildlife reintroductions are all helping to drive species recovery. Among the top predators, the grey wolf is making the strongest recovery. Once hunted to near extinction, 17,000 wolves are now found right across Europe.
9. The urban bee population is no longer declining in The Netherlands thanks to a pollinator strategy.
The native wild bee population in the Netherlands has been declining since the 1940s, but recognizing the crucial role played by wild bees in the pollination of food crops, the government announced a national pollinator strategy in 2018. The strategy included 70 initiatives aimed at creating more nesting sites for bees and strengthening their food supply. Amsterdam has been working on various bee-friendly initiatives that include putting up “bee hotels,” which are a collection of hollow plant stems or thin bamboo that provide space for bees to nest. All of the efforts are working. The latest count of native bees since the project began showed no population decline.
10. A landmark bill will ban the shark fin trade in the United States.
Before the U.S. Senate passed this legislation, 14 states and three U.S. territories had already banned the sale and possession of shark fins. The new bill will prohibit the fin trade across the entire U.S. It’s estimated that fins from as many as 73 million sharks annually end up in the global market. This historic bill bans the buying and selling of shark fins in the United States, thereby removing our country from the global shark fin trade. Shark fins are mainly in demand for shark fin soup, a luxury dish popular in China, Hong Kong and many other places across Asia.
This forthcoming ban follows other measures to protect sharks, including the listing of many shark species on the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) and a ban on gear that is used to target sharks in the Pacific.
What did I miss? What are your reasons to be hopeful for animals and nature from 2022 or in general? Share your stories of hope with me in the comments below!
Plant-based recipes inspired by the popular holiday song
Search for “12 Days of Christmas recipes” on the internet, and you’ll find countless blog posts featuring loads of animal products: actual cooked hens for Day 3, egg-based dishes for Day 6, milky desserts for Day 8, and so on.
There’s absolutely no evidence that the song pays homage to the consumption of different birds on different days during the 12 Days of Christmas; rather, it was most likely a memory game played on Twelfth Night, the 12th and final night of the 12 Days of Christmas, which begins on December 25th and ends on January 6th, otherwise known as Epiphany.
Still, you will find no animals harmed in the crafting of these dishes. It was so much fun crafting this menu — making literal interpretations as well as taking creative license. You’ll see all the whys and wherefores and details about why I chose the dishes I did once you purchase!
Obviously, you can cook from this menu anytime of the year, but I was very mindful about making sure you have what you need for a single holiday dinner (appetizers, starters, mains, and desserts) or for featuring one recipe per day during the 12 days of Christmas. Enjoy!
Poached Pears — A Partridge in a Pear Tree (December 25) Chocolate Pecan Turtles — Two Turtle Doves (December 26) Fabulous French Toast — Three French Hens (December 27) Better-than-Chicken Vegetable Pot Pie — Four Calling Birds (December 28) Monkey Bread — Five Golden Rings (December 29) Eggless Egg Salad Crostini — Six Geese a Laying (December 30) Swan Cut-out Sugar Cookies — Seven Swans a Swimming (December 31) Potato Leek Soup — Eight Maids a Milking (January 1) Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Pink Lady Apples and Onions — Nine Ladies Dancing (January 2) Wassail — Ten Lords-a-Leaping (January 3) Polenta Fries + Eggless Meringue Cookies — Eleven Pipers Piping (January 4) Butternut Squash Timbales — Twelve Drummers Drumming (January 5)
(If you’d like to understand more about why — historically — The 12 Days of Christmas started on December 25th and ended on January 6th (otherwise known as the epiphany), check out the Food for Thought podcast episodes Forbidden Meat as well Food and Feasting.)
“Is it vegan to have a service dog?” “Do you think it’s ethical to have service dogs?” “Do you think using service animals is a form of exploitation?” These are the questions I’ve been asked over the years and which I tackle in today’s episode.