From: 2011 State Fair-goer

To: The person or persons who put the "Go vegan" message on the Butter Cow at the State Fair.

Congratulations! Your feat was pretty impressive. As I stood in the Agriculture Building, I wondered how you were able to sneak in, where there was obviously no public access, to find a way to put your message on the sacred cow (pun intended) of Iowa's most famous annual event.

However, I think you should know that by putting a piece of paper with tape on it on the cow carved in butter, you were putting a product from a dead cow on a product from a living cow.

That's right: Your "Go vegan" protest needed products made from animals -- dead animals. So, don't have a cow, over butter, man.
Butter only uses stuff from living cows. Paper, however, is made in part from meat by-products from dead animals in it. Many adhesives, as well.

So the industry that you targeted with your protest actually provided you with the technology to express yourself.

But that's not the only way you used meat by-products during your protest about the use of meat.

If you drove your car -- or even if you are an environmentalist who rode your bike to the State Fair -- meat by-products made that possible, as well. The ball bearings that make your wheels move are made with inedible meat by-products. The rubber in your tires, too, has ingredients from dead animals.

Face it, Dude: Some cow had to die so you could put your buy some paper and some tape, and go to the State Fair to put that protest on the Butter Cow.

You like to say that as a vegan, you don't use meat in any way.

Oh yes, you do. Every day. Lots of ways.

You may not "eat" meat, and there's nothing wrong with that, although the thought of using soy products to replace ice cream seems rather nasty, at least to me. I don't think that "iced dessert made from soybeans, not ice cream" is a very appealing marketing tool.

But according to both the meat producers, and Vegan web sites, just about everything you use every day has some sort of meat by-product in it.

Here are just a few: marshmallows, gelatin, plaster, asphalt, insulation, lubricants, lipstick, hand cream, fireworks, buttons, piano keys, glue, fertilizer (for all of those vegetables you grow to replace meat in your diet), paper, wallpaper, sandpaper, combs, toothbrushes, and even violin strings.

And I haven't even mentioned medical uses, especially insulin. It takes the insulin from the pancreases of 26 cattle to keep one diabetic alive for one year. So if you have any close friends or relatives who are diabetic, you may want to keep that whole "go vegan" thing to yourself.

Whoever you are, you made lots of news this week. People all over the world have heard about you (even though the Des Moines Register refused to publish the name of your group).

And you've even inspired some poems for the 2012 Iowa State Fair.

I never saw a Butter Cow

But I sure hope I see one

So I could make it better now

By making it a vegan

The State Fair's had its Butter Cow

For a hundred and one years

But until the year two-oh-one-one

No one ever shed one tear

Thousands saw the Butter Cow

Just standing there, all frozen

But me, you know, I found a way

For my views to be imposin'

It takes months to carve a butter cow

To form its shape and size

But in just a single minute I

Wrote two words for the wise

I hope you take my words to heart

As you see the butter cow

And the news of my words of art

Has Iowa all aflutter now

I bet at the Fair I made my mark

By how I schemed to barge in

Twenty-twelve is when they'll start

To carve cows out of margarine

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Comments (9)

By: Jennie on August 18th 1:41pm
Insulin isn't made from animals. Ask any diabetic.
By: Eric on August 18th 5:27pm
obviously all the products listed absolutely require animal byproducts to be made. it's not like government subsidies make meat cheaper than it should be and create all these byproducts that are essentially recycled. how do you know where the tape came from and what was in it? same for the paper? perhaps your vandal walked to the state fair?
By: Joe on August 18th 7:18pm
veganism is about minimalizing animal suffering, not about purism. if animals weren't slaughtered by the billions for meat and dairy products (yes dairy contributes to the slaughter industry, where "spent" cows all end up, as well as their baby boys we call veal) then there would not be as many animal byproducts in everything we use. Cows end up as glue because there is so much waste generated by the animal agriculture industry, and it is used by other industries. The suffering that cows endured just to make this butter sculpture is immense, and hopefully the media generated by this person's little activism will also be great, and get people to think about the way animals are treated in our society.
By: Derek on August 19th 9:25am
I like Dean's poem about the butter cow.
My Webster's dictionary says insulin is a substance made from the pancreas of cattle or sheep, used in cases of diabetes.
By: Phyllis Simnacher on August 19th 2:58pm
Just because the market is smothered with animal parts and bits and pieces, doesn't mean there aren't better products available and infinite ones yet to be created.

As a vegan who makes sufficient effort to avoid the negative impacts of "using" animals - My task would be made much simpler if all products had a friendly "V" on their packaging to simplify the kinder choice.

You can tout and brag all you want about how "efficient" animal ag is in dispersing the flesh "profitably". That is when it's not recalling a year's worth of "beef" in less than a month...

No, as for me - Keep your butter, lipsticks, glue and other uglies made from stolen life... I'll have no part in it!
By: BeaElliott on August 19th 8:17pm
Being the cause of unnecessary suffering and death is no cause to be celebrated, no reason for pride...everyone knows this...only vegans live in accordance with the goal of minimizing suffering and death.
By: Veganelder on August 19th 9:15pm
By: Joe Brown on August 20th 10:42am
Thank you Derek, Bea and Veganelder for sticking up for the animals. We are the only species who drink another species milk by choice. Aren't we supposed to be weaned after a few years??
By: Jen on August 22nd 10:53am

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