Submitted by Danielle Hébert
For the past three and a half months, activist Rich Adams, known Rich The Vegan has been on an unusual journey.
He is riding a modified scooter across the country to raise awareness of animal rights and veganism. Adams began this journey at the beginning of April in Halifax and plans to finish in Vancouver on July 26th. He reached Revelstoke on July 12.
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Although this kind of journey may seem quite unusual to most of us, it is actually the second time that Adams has undertaken such a trek. In May, Adams completed a 633 kilometre scooter journey across South Korea. An undertaking that took over three weeks to complete.
Adams said he was initially motivated to take action in South Korea when he learned of the cruel dog meat industry. He wanted to raise awareness of the atrocious treatment of dogs and other animals raised for human consumption.
Adams is very soft spoken and when asked why he is compelled him to do this scooter trip across Canada, he explained he is simply called to take action to do what he can in order to help protect more vulnerable beings. Adams said animals aren’t able to actively advocate or defend themselves from the types of conditions they experience as a result of industry standards for raising livestock, it is the duty of people who recognize that injustice to do what they are able to do to help.
For him, he is called to action by undertaking physical challenges as a way to, not only raise awareness of the issue but also inspire people to take a look at what changes they might be able to make in their own lives and consumption habits.
Adams said he understands that going vegan can be intimidating and it can be helpful to view it as a process of gradually eliminating animal-sourced foods from your diet. He said that he started going vegetarian about nine years ago and gradually as he learned more about animal welfare and sat with his feelings about it he was naturally called to transition to becoming completely vegan about five years ago.
He is also a passionate advocate for vegan men and expressed that he is aware that eating meat is commonly viewed as “tough and manly” which is a reason it might be difficult for many men to stop eating it. He shared his feelings that taking a strong stance on animal rights and eliminating meat from your diet is actually much more “manly” and wants other men to know that it is important to reframe the current ideas about those views.
“I am a forestry worker and still like to use my shotguns, I just also like to stand up for weaker creatures and help protect them,” said Adams.
If you’re on the road between Revelstoke and Vancouver over the next couple of weeks, keep your eyes out for Rich The Vegan. He is easy to spot wearing his bright red shirt and maple leaf bandana. If you would like more information about his journey, veganism, or to donate to help fund his journey, visit www.richthevegan.com.