Disclaimer: this is not an attempt to persuade anyone. This was originally a response to someone in a conversation on Facebook. Hence it's lack of structure!
Obviously if people have no other choice but to consume animals, they will make that choice. But in most places and for so many people nowadays, that is not a necessity. It is only what they've been or become accustomed to. When I realized more recently in my adult life what choice it's been, that I've been making, I could no longer make the same choice I had been making until the age of 29. Veganism is not something only accessible to wealthy people. It's not [always] something that is handed to you because your life is easy...
My house has always been quite filthy to most peoples' standards to be honest, from when I was growing up and even now. Mold, dust, leaky basement, leaky roof, leaky pipes... I have not had a working oven since I think 2013. *Every* year I come close to losing my house because I can barely afford to pay the taxes. In 2014 when I had Laurent Piemontesi (one of the founders of Art du Déplacement, for those of my friends that don't know this name) stay with me it would rain in my living room all the way into the basement because my roof fell apart and had a hole in it. That hole had been there for over a year in total and grew larger and larger until I finally had some money to get the roof fixed in the summer of 2015. I woke up Christmas day in 2015 to discover that my furnace had stopped working...a wonderful holiday gift from the universe. I had to spend that winter with no heat (and part of the next winter) because I had $70 to my name at the time after having some bad car trouble that cost me almost every dollar I had. It was 0 degrees outside and 1 degree in my living room on one of the colder days. My refrigerator does not work fully in warmer months, sometimes it won't keep anything frozen. My car is having so many problems I've lost count lately. For a bit of time in 2010 I had to eat a lot of plain white rice because I couldn't afford groceries. I have student loan debt of over $13,000 still from 2007. I have a credit card company trying to sue me and garnishing some of my wages for another old debt. I haven't had any healthcare since my mom lost her good job when I was 16 (I'm almost 32 now, and she's since died of cancer in 2010). Right this moment I have a total of $310 to my name and that's before most of my bills come in the next week. My business has been suffering this year and I am struggling to make ends meet. I don't choose to be vegan because I'm some silver spoon wielding man-child who is served everything (for international readers: in case it has had any effect on your assumptions, I am nothing like our president and do not agree with anything he has been doing). I choose it because it makes sense to me with my (rather newly found, it's been 2.5 years) deeper thought into myself and what I really feel about these animals. I choose it because it is one way I can "be strong to be useful" for the animals (and the environment so - the whole world), when I can't always "be strong to be useful" for my fellow humans surrounding me because of my financial situations.
This is not a cry for help from me - I just want people to understand that veganism isn't always some snooty, lavish, rich-person-who-posts-vacation-food-photos-on-their-(seemingly)-perfect-life-instagram lifestyle. It's not always easy and I don't at all expect it to be.