Nicolette Hahn Niman in The Atlantic:
As Americans gather around holiday tables this year, many of us will be setting places for vegetarians and vegans. In some families, diverse diets co-exist peacefully. In others, well … maybe there's a health-obsessed uncle who relishes warning that “Meat will kill you!” Or an idealistic college student, eager to regale her complacent elders with grim details of the cruelty and environmental damage wrought by factory farms. Or omnivores who resent the suggestion that they should worry — or feel guilty — about eating meat.
The three of us can relate to both sides of such discussions. Though reared by omnivorous families, as young adults we each came to the conclusion that meat was to blame for health problems, environmental destruction, and cruelty to animals. Collectively, we have lived 52 years vegan or vegetarian. Yet we no longer think that vegetarianism is the answer to these ills. Now — as a rancher, a hunter, and a butcher — we firmly believe foods from animals can be healthful, environmentally appropriate, and ethical.