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Wool argument with (vegan) boyfriend

Last night, my boyfriend and I had an argument about wool. He was saying that he was looking for a good quality wool sweater that had the wool supplied by "ethical" farmers that did not practice mulesing.
I told him that this is stupid, because mulesing or not, wool isn't vegan, period. I showed him an article explaining about all the terrible things that go on in the wool industry. I was hoping he'd see my point and admit that I'm right, since, you know, he's vegan as well.
No such luck. He had a lot of vague, dead-end arguments, such as "You have to draw the line somewhere," "I could purchase some sustainable farmed wool yarn and have a friend knit it for me," etc.
It sounds to me like he's just looking for an excuse to wear wool, which is lame. I don't get why so many people see wool as such a gray area. It's not. They may as well be wearing leather, in my opinion.

Thoughts?

Well, it sounds as though you will not be happy with him having wool no matter what, and he won't be happy without a wool sweater.  So maybe suggest to him that he get one secondhand?  Then it's like you are recycling wool that has already had the cruelty happen and you aren't letting it go to waste.

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Well, it sounds as though you will not be happy with him having wool no matter what, and he won't be happy without a wool sweater.  So maybe suggest to him that he get one secondhand?  Then it's like you are recycling wool that has already had the cruelty happen and you aren't letting it go to waste.

Better yet, if he bought some secondhand wool his friend could knit that up into whatever he liked! Perhaps you could both ask around older family members: my grandmother recently turned over a great deal of wool and synthetic yarn to me. I'm sure there's somebody you know who has some.

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I agree with you gnarls, definitely.  But it sounds like you might have to agree to disagree?  Like, he's the one wearing it, not you.  It doesn't sound like he's about to change his mind.

Secondhand would be a good option, but I don't know how that fits in with getting something high quality?  I'd definitely suggest it.  I mean, if you've given him the facts, that's the best you can do.  You might also want to ask him why he's ok with "ethical" wool and not "ethical" dairy, for instance.

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that's silly.

but then again, i am one of those crazy vegans that is kinda against the whole "pet" thing, so obviously i would find the use of any kind of wool un-vegan.

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i am sure he can find plenty of other clothes to wear so why bother? i would feel like such a hypocrite and who really knows if the lambs were "ethically treated" who really has proof of that? i'm sure the lambs would much rather be wearing their fur than having u take it from them

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I just wonder why he's so hell bent on wearing wool? Like..why is that his thing. There are lots of fabrics....and warm ones at that.  ???

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I don't know if this will make sense to anyone else, but isn't wearing wool for a vegan just a little like wearing fake fur? I mean fake furor fake snake or ostrage skin kind of demonstrates that the wearer thinks it's it's OK to wear the skin of an animal in my mind. Just my opinion. Also I was wondering, is your boyfriend "mostly vegan" or "vegan diet only", or "vegan/animal rights minded", or "vegan/animal rights activist"??

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He is like 99% vegan, animal rights-minded. He doesn't eat any animal products, including honey. Doesn't wear leather, etc. Wool is kind of the only thing he doesn't care as much about. Kind of strange, right?

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I suggest he listen to the Vegetarian Food for Thought podcast episode called "The Shearing of Sheep."  You can find it here: http://feeds.feedburner.com/VegetarianFoodForThought.  This episode is from September of last year.

Before listening to this, I was unclear on my stance on wool.  Looking back, my reasoning behind not being "passionate" about how terrible wool is was the same illogical reasoning that kept me eating dairy for years: "It doesn't hurt the animal to ."  It might be true that your boyfriend can find a farmer who doesn't do mulesing, but that doesn't make it "vegan" or even humane.  The wool industry is HEAVILY tied to the sheep meat industry (like the dairy industry to the veal industry).  Learning that is what made me 100% certain that wool is never "okay."

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maybe he can get wool from a farm he's actually been to? it could make you both feel better. I usually don't use wool when i knit, but my friend has a couple of sheep and I use wool from them occasionally. I really don't see the harm in that since i know the animals and the people that own them very well.

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anyone got any links to wool being bad?
I've always wanted one and I know two French girls one vegan one becoming vegan who would love to hear about it.
We just don't know where to look.
I'll listen to the pod cast soon.

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well... i think that video sums it up well! show your bf asap

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In my eyes, wool is no different than leather, suede, fur, silk or down. I am vegetarian and I don't buy/use/wear it. It comes from an animal, right away he should acknowledge that fact and say no. I don't get why he feels differently about it?

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Well it is a wonderful thing to be able to stick to ideals  and principles throughout your life, but I do agree with your boyfriend somewhat about having to draw a personal line.  When I first began to study Buddhism I was extremely idealistic about protecting all forms of life.  Then a colony of rats moved into my roof space and no matter how hard I wished them away or tried to find someone to trap and remove them, I was stuck with them.  Eventually I poisoned them!  I am still not proud of my behaviour, but not only did it not do my health any good to leave them there,  I was jeopardizing the health of others too.
Your boyfriend sounds as if he is trying to tell you that he has reached the limit of his personal commitment to veganism and it's probably best just to try to accommodate his views.  Maybe you could ask him not to wear his woollen sweater around you and just leave it at that.  There is no one right or wrong way to get through the challenges life throws at us.  Keep your own convictions.  They are marvellous and I hope you never have to compromise them.  But, having discussed the issue and pointed out your own objections to wool, don't try to impose your views on anyone else, even your nearest and dearest!

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I never really thought about it before...I am a new vegan and only in the diet area really but the Pink video is pretty disturbing. So that does it for me.

So, maybe your boyfriend would be horrified as well? Or maybe his search for the ideal wool standards will be so difficult he will settle on something else? It shrinks horribly anyway.

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