COVID-19: Our Banquet of Consequences

By Dr. Will Tuttle

“Everybody, soon or late, sits down to a banquet of consequences.” – Robert Louis Stevenson


The spinning fury at the core of our culture, animal agriculture, not only exploits and destroys the lives and purposes of animals, it does the same to humans as well, and we see this playing out now with this draconian lockdown of healthy people, eroding mental health, human rights, and economic independence, and destroying countless small and medium businesses (including vegan ones).

In my lectures over the years, I’ve described animal agriculture as a Trojan horse: on the surface it appears to be a helpful gift, but on closer examination, and with deeper understanding, we see clearly that it is an utterly harmful force in our individual and collective lives, incessantly harming the health of our ecosystems and society, as well as our physical, psychological, and spiritual well-being.

Animal agriculture is also the hidden cause of the COVID pandemic, and of the dominant narrative that is imprisoning billions of people in fear and confusion in their homes, and eroding our capacity to speak up and defend our basic freedoms. We are reaping the harvest that we have been sowing for decades and centuries. This is our banquet of consequences. Our culture has created a vast system of animal enslavement that heartlessly condemns billions of sentient beings—whose interests are as significant to them as ours are to us—to lives of misery, terror, and pain. Their purposes are stolen and they are reduced to mere material units of production in a rapacious economic system that sells them by the pound. They are impregnated on rape racks, their offspring immediately stolen, exploited, and killed, and all are forcibly vaccinated and drugged, tracked, microchipped, mercilessly mutilated and oppressed, and brutally killed in an unnecessary, ugly, surreal prison-world devoid of meaning and respect. Animal agriculture defines our society.

Those of us who purchase the flesh and secretions of these unfortunate beings, which is most of humanity worldwide, are the causal forces propelling this system ever onward with the flood of money we spend—votes we cast—driving its ongoing and reckless devastation. Thus, as we persist in engineering and imposing a dystopian future on billions of beings, we now see the gaping maw of a dystopian future looming before our eyes. Mandatory confinement, separation of family members, loss of basic freedoms, forced vaccinations, routine microchipping, mass tracking and surveillance: all these standard factory-farm practices are now being openly discussed and planned by health officials, pharmaceutical representatives, and government agencies. What we relentlessly inflict on farmed animals we see manifesting in our human world, and, ironically, we seem powerless and strangely uninspired to stop it.

Why is this? Why are we so unable to see the obvious and respond with clarity, vitality, and solidarity to these insidious existential dangers to us and to our children? Why are we immobilized by fear and mesmerized by the voices of authority, unable to connect with either our intuitive wisdom or to think critically about our situation? Why the nearly-blind allegiance to mainstream media narratives and medical-pharmaceutical forces that we should by now have learned to question? Why do we find those relative few who dare to speak up and question the dominant COVID narrative to be so threatening?

It is because animal agriculture not only exploits animals, it exploits us. As we exploit and abuse, we will be exploited and abused. Each one of us, as we purchase meat, dairy, or egg products, becomes an invisible killer to the cows, pigs, hens, and fishes we are exploiting. We directly but invisibly cause terror, pain, and death, and we compound it further by eating it and feeding it to our vulnerable and innocent children, ritually indoctrinating them as we were. We are the invisible killers, but we repress this awareness, and project it outward, impulsively terrified of invisible killers, which seem to be everywhere.

We spend billions on military defense to protect ourselves from lurking terrorists, and now are even more frightened by microscopic enemies, the hordes of viruses, pathogens, and other unseen agents of death arising and projected from our unfaced violence.

This is our shadow: our repressed awareness, guilt, and shame, propelling us to give our power away to authorities in the vain hope they will protect us. At war with animals, nature, and each other, we make war on invisible viruses as well, completely failing to understand them in our fear-based materialist delusion. We see and suspect enemies and threats everywhere because we are the enemies and threats, and our fear sends us into the waiting arms of the merciless global conglomerates, who provide both the narrative and the toxic “solution.” They will profit from us more in power even than in dollars. They have purchased both media and government, and we find ourselves, the wounded and programmed dominators of animals, increasingly dominated by impersonal forces beyond our control.

Turtles1 by visionary artist Madeleine TuttleThere is but one way to human freedom, and to a world of health and harmony, and that is the way of ahimsa—nonharmfulness to other beings—a vegan world of respect for all. We will be worthy of understanding and appreciating ourselves and everyone on this beautiful and abundant planet when we dismantle the entrenched narrative of human superiority and entitlement. A new story is yearning to be born in our human culture. It has ancient roots, and this current emergency (emerge-and-see), if we respond appropriately, can put us on a higher path of liberation and healing.

It seems that vegans are in a unique position to be the midwife helpers of this new birth. We have been discussing for decades how animal agriculture is the source of many of the food-borne diseases afflicting humanity, such as campylobacter, listeria, salmonella, and mad-cow, as well as the rise of antibiotic-resistant bacteria and the zoonotic spread of disease. Beside this of course, are the many diseases caused by diets high in animal-sourced foods, such as heart disease, liver and kidney disease, diabetes, obesity, dementia, and many forms of cancer. As vegans, we are typically making a conscious effort to take responsibility for our health and also to contribute to the health of others, and to question the established animal agriculture narratives that promote violence toward animals, hungry people, workers, ecosystems, indigenous people, future generations, and our own organs, cells, and relationships.

Fortunately, it seems that increasing numbers of people are beginning to make the connections between animal agriculture and the many assaults on our collective health and freedom. May we all do our best to keep this momentum increasing, and to protect our rights and prevent censorship. These are the immense opportunities and challenges we are currently facing. Thanks for contributing your heart, love, critical thinking, and deep questioning during this demanding time.

10 Responses to COVID-19: Our Banquet of Consequences

  • Louise Bailey says:

    Thank you Will, for this beautiful moving essay. For bringing more deeply into my awareness that we vegans are in a pivotal point to help usher in this understanding and hasten a shift to a vegan world. I see it happening. Only today was talking to someone about Mark Passio, a truther who was brilliantly talking about natural law and the connection between our own immorality and the corruption in the world powers, but he wasn’t vegan. In the last couple of years he’s not only gone vegan but began integrating the vegan message into his message, and so many in the truth community who respect him and his work are going vegan as a result. It does seem that the message you have been trying to communicate is becoming an ever more wider shared understanding. Thank you!

  • Randyl Rupar says:

    Being examples of rational, compassionate and courageous humans is the energetic reflection we as Vegans must attain.
    Mahalo for your continued inspiration!

  • Monika Baumann says:

    ‘Bringing Heaven on Earth’ – as everyone can see so far we didn’t, in my opinion. Rather the opposite. A ‘system’- a perpetual motion machine. (Amongst many others we should have taken care that all ‘small wheels’ are aware, understand, and work together and in harmony, and are responsible for the whole situation.)
    This Heaven would be ‘above’ all, including His (!) non-human Creatures, resp. Creation (same, similar to Paradise?)
    No one could be (really) happy (even if so, our lives are finite), neither these nor those (as already, still now), and being afraid of not getting a bright future once we are leaving this Earth – and what about our next incarnation/s?
    “As long as Man continues to be the ruthless destroyer of living beings, he will never know health or peace.
    For as long as men massacre animals, they will kill each other.
    Indeed, he who sows the seed of murder and pain cannot reap joy and love.”

  • I was sent this article by a good friend and mentor and it strikes so many chords with me, saying what I’ve been saying of late but better and clearer and with more breadth than I have said. I have learned from this and from the comments and will now expand my knowledge and my ability to communicate and advocate.One thing I will mention, there are no living beings “lower” than mankind, we are all equal in our own unique circumstances.

  • Mary Hill says:

    Thank you once again for your beautiful expression of compassion and wisdom, Will. I pray for the spread of this truth – I am doing all I can. Bless you.

  • Mark Wiesenfeld says:

    Thank You, my Friend.

    Blessings, Peace and Love Unto All Beings,

    In Faith and Gratitude,
    All God’s Grace,
    Boulder, Colorado

  • Karl Young says:

    Hey Will,
    Great piece, but I always worry that you’re just preaching to the choir and maybe not reaching people that have the capacity to be moved by your arguments (whether or not that’s actually true !). As such I’m always on the lookout for “mainstream” sources of arguments that people will pay attention to. I think I found a pretty good one, at least in terms of making it hard for academics to avoid facing the kinds of tough question you raise, re.:


    — KY

    • Will Tuttle says:

      Thanks Karl for this link – yes, we need to inspire the choir and also do our best to reach those who are not as yet open to our message. Will check it out!

  • Patricia Knudsen says:

    I give up meat 35 years ago and went vegan 16. My heart has been breaking 2 out this time at the atrocities humans inflict on other beings. I have felt very strongly that if Humanity doesn’t cease and desist from this Behavior now that Humanity needs to Simply go away myself included. I have felt this fervently for decades. I’ve gotten my most cherished wish, the abolition of humanity or so it seems given such sobering documents as Rockefeller 2010 OPERATION LOCKSTEP linked here. Nothing short of divine intervention and a powerful shift now can alter our course, nor should it.

  • Thank you, Will, for this passionate, powerful vision of the reality of our situation and of the one, true solution to our manifold problems: living with deep reverence for all life.

    Keep sharing the truth and the Love,

    Michael Klaper, M.D.

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