I just read Gabe Kahn’s Garden State of Mind, “Punishment with a capital maybe” (July 18). As a longtime animal rights activist and vegan, I was taken by his comment, “It’s for this reason that, much to my wife’s chagrin, I won’t kill bugs.” This comment made me want to ask, as might follow logically, if Kahn is then an ethical vegan. Certainly, if he wouldn’t kill a bug, which I would never do either, he would not sanction the killing of an animal.
I ask this question because I have renounced Judaism, in its religious aspects, because it does not align with my values. Any religion that condones or perpetuates violence is one in which I will take no part. It has been my experience that Jewish institutions, and this newspaper as well, promote violence by accepting that violence against animals is acceptable. The fact that Jewish institutions are not doing more to make the Golden Rule the ideal by which we should all strive to live bothers me to such an extent that I have distanced myself from them.