Activist and model.
SS: What made you go vegan and why?
JP: I went vegan after I had been vegetarian for a few years and after I was given the opportunity to help out with Motive Company (www.motivecompany.com). I first went vegetarian because I was straight edge and after living the straight edge lifestyle for a while I really started to discover more about being vegetarian and vegan. At the same time of my switch from meat eater to vegetarian I really started having more of a conscious when eating animals and got to the point where I couldn’t physically digest them.
SS: Has it been difficult for you? If yes, what was difficult and did it get easier?
JP: I feel that when I went vegan it wasn’t that difficult for me. I tend to be a person who once I have a conviction in something I am not going to let anything overcome that ideology that I have. With being straight edge for so long and dealing with the constant harassment by others that I live that lifestyle, being vegan only helped to further my strength as a person and connection with my surroundings, myself, and the environment. I felt a weight lifted off my shoulders so to speak once I made the commitment to a cruelty free lifestyle.
SS: What are some animal rights related things you participate in?
JP: I help out with Motive Company. We design and create animal rights related clothing for the animal rights community as well as have support shirts for those vegan activists who may have found themselves on the not so good side of the law. Every day I find myself talking about veganism to someone and just trying to inform them on how much of a great impact the lifestyle has for everyone, every animal, and the world.
SS: What are your favorite AR organizations?
JP: Some of my favorite animal rights organizations are WAR (Win Animal Rights), Vegan Outreach, FARM Sanctuary, Rescued Sanctuary, To Hell and Back Vegan Pitbull Rescue, and the countless other animal rights organizations and activists who are making a positive change and impact every single day.
SS: What would you say to encourage someone is considering becoming vegan?
JP: For anyone who is considering going vegan I’d say the best way is to do your research, with this day and age there is an abundance of avenues where you can find out more about the vegan choice. Another thing I feel is important too, is to ask yourself the question why do I want to become vegan? Once you have made that step, it’s important to understand that being vegan is a learning process, if you make an honest mistake because you thought something was vegan or just don’t have the knowledge yet, but later find out it’s not vegan, don’t get discourage and quit it all together, just don’t make that mistake again. I feel like a lot of people think it’s just so impossible and that if they honestly did make a mistake that they can’t ever be again, I feel that is not the case. But once you get the hang of living such an amazing lifestyle that is more than just a dietary thing, I promise you will love it.
SS: Do you have any memories that stand out in your mind about someone saving an animal? Or relating to an animal in a unique way?
JP: Growing up my entire life my family has always taken in stray animals that needed a place to live or have been lucky to get animals from the local shelter (i.e. dogs, cats, and horses). I’d say my most recent memory though of saving an animal was when I found a bird stuck in a lamp/light fixture at this banquet hall/gardens and I was able to get the bird out of there. I felt so bad because he/she was trying so hard to fly out but couldn’t quite get themselves out.
Remember, Go Vegan and Stay Vegan!