By Published On: 20 January 2011819 words4.2 min read

Trenta Ice Coffe Starbucks

Oh my goodness, I’m in such a bad mood.  The interwebs has been flooded with negativity the past few days and, quite unfortunately, I’ve done lost my patience.  And as a result, my temper.  I know, I know.  I normally don’t give in to pokes and jabs at being vegan.  I recognize that there are still folks who have a hard time comprehending something as vast as compassion.  I don’t understand it, but I know.

So maybe my bad mood and I should have stayed away from the computer- then maybe I’d be less likely to lose my temper when I read this from Erik Marcus at Vegan.com:

First.  It’s iced coffee- made with, you know, ice. Which, as anyone who’s had an iced beverage knows, means that it’s not a full 31 liquid ounces of coffee.  And I ain’t just talking about iced coffees here either.  Kool-aid, carrot juice, liquor, it doesn’t matter- add ice to the glass and you ain’t getting the same amount as if you hadn’t.  Because, and we’re gonna get all scientific here, the ice added to the beverage is gonna take up part of the room in the cup- amazing.

Second.  Who are you Erik Marcus, to tell anyone that they should be institutionalized for drinking coffee?? Do you know what institutionalized means?

I could go on and on all day long about how:

  1. Coffee (and iced coffee beverages) can be made vegan or are vegan.
  2. Vegan.com is a blog that is supposedly about veganism so I refer you back to item #1:  Coffee (and iced coffee beverages) can be made vegan or are vegan.
  3. People joke about how folks should be institutionalized without realizing that there are real people who need real help who are institutionalized.  And don’t give me BS about how I should: (a) lighten up, (b) learn to take a joke, and (c) not make such a big deal out of nothing because being sick isn’t funny.
  4. The new Trenta size is 31 ounces of an iced coffee drink.  Divide that into 8 ounce size portions and you’ve got yourself 3.8 eight ounce portions in one drink.  So, round that up to 4 servings (then remove some for the ice factor) and guess what?  “It is generally agreed that consuming up to 300 mg of caffeine per day is safe. That would be about the amount of caffeine you would get from three cups of coffee.” My point?  Buying a Trenta size coffee  doesn’t mean you’ll sip that sucker right down, all on your own.  Maybe you buy one on the way to work but sip on it all day- not everyone can leave for lunch, you know.  Maybe you buy one to share (hey hey, save some loot instead of ordering TWO vegan iced coffees) with a vegan pallie or your vegan love.  It’s hot when a compassionate person is willing to share their vegan iced coffee- romantic even.
  5. Even if the pseudo subtle jab was at over-consumption (which, let’s be honest, 31 ounces of a sugared beverage isn’t healthy any way you look at it) and not towards vegans themselves, it didn’t work.  I’m vegan.  I drink coffee.  I would buy a Trenta coffee to share with someone and I don’t need to be institutionalized.  I know some folks who are, who need it, who are getting help, and who don’t deserve someone making light of their personal struggles.  Because, like I said before, being sick isn’t funny.
  6. I refuse to believe that insulting your readers is good for page views because, who likes to be insulted?
  7. Knocking your readers for drinking a vegan drink (regardless of the amount) makes you an asshole a not very nice person.

See?  I told you I shouldn’t have turned on the computer today.  Maybe then I wouldn’t have let my temper call Erik Marcus an asshole a not very nice person.  Maybe.

But since I did, I’m just going to take a lot of deep breaths and look at this cute shit till it numbs my brain.

Baby Bunny Nest

[line]

*** This issue might seem like a small thing, something not worth getting worked up over.  I disagree.  By saying that someone should be institutionalized for drinking that much coffee, Erik was inferring that the person was crazy. That fellow vegans, is a stereotype.  A stereotype, by the way, not to dissimilar from, “vegans are all radical people who love worms more than other humans.”  See, stereotypes can be a bad thing.  So, Erik didn’t do anything mean to one particular vegan by saying that they need institutionalized, but he perpetuated a negative stereotype (all institutionalized people are crazy- which is not true) about a group of people.  Which, for anyone in the animal rights movement knows, is the very thing vegans are fighting to do- break negative stereotypes.  To change minds, we first must open them and recognize that small things have large impacts.  Small things.  Things like…stereotypes. ***

By Published On: 20 January 2011819 words4.2 min read

Trenta Ice Coffe Starbucks

Oh my goodness, I’m in such a bad mood.  The interwebs has been flooded with negativity the past few days and, quite unfortunately, I’ve done lost my patience.  And as a result, my temper.  I know, I know.  I normally don’t give in to pokes and jabs at being vegan.  I recognize that there are still folks who have a hard time comprehending something as vast as compassion.  I don’t understand it, but I know.

So maybe my bad mood and I should have stayed away from the computer- then maybe I’d be less likely to lose my temper when I read this from Erik Marcus at Vegan.com:

First.  It’s iced coffee- made with, you know, ice. Which, as anyone who’s had an iced beverage knows, means that it’s not a full 31 liquid ounces of coffee.  And I ain’t just talking about iced coffees here either.  Kool-aid, carrot juice, liquor, it doesn’t matter- add ice to the glass and you ain’t getting the same amount as if you hadn’t.  Because, and we’re gonna get all scientific here, the ice added to the beverage is gonna take up part of the room in the cup- amazing.

Second.  Who are you Erik Marcus, to tell anyone that they should be institutionalized for drinking coffee?? Do you know what institutionalized means?

I could go on and on all day long about how:

  1. Coffee (and iced coffee beverages) can be made vegan or are vegan.
  2. Vegan.com is a blog that is supposedly about veganism so I refer you back to item #1:  Coffee (and iced coffee beverages) can be made vegan or are vegan.
  3. People joke about how folks should be institutionalized without realizing that there are real people who need real help who are institutionalized.  And don’t give me BS about how I should: (a) lighten up, (b) learn to take a joke, and (c) not make such a big deal out of nothing because being sick isn’t funny.
  4. The new Trenta size is 31 ounces of an iced coffee drink.  Divide that into 8 ounce size portions and you’ve got yourself 3.8 eight ounce portions in one drink.  So, round that up to 4 servings (then remove some for the ice factor) and guess what?  “It is generally agreed that consuming up to 300 mg of caffeine per day is safe. That would be about the amount of caffeine you would get from three cups of coffee.” My point?  Buying a Trenta size coffee  doesn’t mean you’ll sip that sucker right down, all on your own.  Maybe you buy one on the way to work but sip on it all day- not everyone can leave for lunch, you know.  Maybe you buy one to share (hey hey, save some loot instead of ordering TWO vegan iced coffees) with a vegan pallie or your vegan love.  It’s hot when a compassionate person is willing to share their vegan iced coffee- romantic even.
  5. Even if the pseudo subtle jab was at over-consumption (which, let’s be honest, 31 ounces of a sugared beverage isn’t healthy any way you look at it) and not towards vegans themselves, it didn’t work.  I’m vegan.  I drink coffee.  I would buy a Trenta coffee to share with someone and I don’t need to be institutionalized.  I know some folks who are, who need it, who are getting help, and who don’t deserve someone making light of their personal struggles.  Because, like I said before, being sick isn’t funny.
  6. I refuse to believe that insulting your readers is good for page views because, who likes to be insulted?
  7. Knocking your readers for drinking a vegan drink (regardless of the amount) makes you an asshole a not very nice person.

See?  I told you I shouldn’t have turned on the computer today.  Maybe then I wouldn’t have let my temper call Erik Marcus an asshole a not very nice person.  Maybe.

But since I did, I’m just going to take a lot of deep breaths and look at this cute shit till it numbs my brain.

Baby Bunny Nest

[line]

*** This issue might seem like a small thing, something not worth getting worked up over.  I disagree.  By saying that someone should be institutionalized for drinking that much coffee, Erik was inferring that the person was crazy. That fellow vegans, is a stereotype.  A stereotype, by the way, not to dissimilar from, “vegans are all radical people who love worms more than other humans.”  See, stereotypes can be a bad thing.  So, Erik didn’t do anything mean to one particular vegan by saying that they need institutionalized, but he perpetuated a negative stereotype (all institutionalized people are crazy- which is not true) about a group of people.  Which, for anyone in the animal rights movement knows, is the very thing vegans are fighting to do- break negative stereotypes.  To change minds, we first must open them and recognize that small things have large impacts.  Small things.  Things like…stereotypes. ***

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  1. Billy Yakuza June 3, 2011 at 2:35 pm - Reply

    Of course there is no certification process or objective vetting authority to declare one’s authenticity as a vegan. One must self-identify as such and that’s usually good enough for anyone to understand.

    Though its been my observation that there is an under current of competition that has washed over “vegans” frequenting popular co-ops and the infamous Whole Foods that leads to in-aisle arguments and disputes about the quality of a product or its status as “organic”. For example two women were recently banned from the local coop because of loitering and harassing other customers because of their “poor nutritional choices” and failure to “adhere to a vegan diet”. They even had a go at each other about who had been “devoted to veganism” longer. Are these self appointed officers of vegan enforcement representative of the larger group ? Probably not. I sincerely hope not.

    However, I frequently ( at least a couple of times per week) see patrons chewing out employees for being sold out of some essential “vegan product” or not patronizing a particular organic farm, or incorrectly stocking food, or not having a certain brand of spirulina, etc. When I asked the employees about these exchanges they just shrug and say it happens often enough that they don’t even think about it. Such people will complain incessantly regardless of what they do.

    Now, don’t shoot the messenger, but the employees also indicate that most of the complaints and impolite behavior comes from self-declared vegans. As in “I’m a vegan and I KNOW that this brand isn’t prepared in accordance with the standards for the lifestyle…blah, blah”. Are they really vegan or just attempting to invoke some air of authority by claiming so ?

    As in any social community there are those

  2. teddy January 25, 2011 at 5:30 pm - Reply

    Wow, reading this chain of comments indicates to me that those critical of the reply post DID NOT READ THE ENTIRE THING. OR ARE SINGLE-ISSUE VEGANS. (Which is the graver offense, I know not!)

    Any vegan who tries to live a more compassionate life cannot live it if s/he’s slinging around stereotypes. Stereotypes stem from ignorance or, worse, carelessness. The decision to live a more vegan life should be deliberate and more thought out.

    It’s really not that complicated.

  3. Louis January 23, 2011 at 9:55 am - Reply

    There’s nothing wrong with Starbucks. Im a vegan, I drink Starbucks and nobody say im some kind of a …whatsoever.

  4. Taryn January 22, 2011 at 2:48 pm - Reply

    Well, the baby bunny is cute…
    :D

  5. Kelly January 21, 2011 at 10:46 am - Reply

    I think you have a passion that could be better used elsewhere. You’re wasting it on an argument about how much ice is in a cup of coffee. If you think that blasting people for using the word “institutionalized” or calling someone crazy is conducive to defending veganism in a positive way, I’m afraid you might not get the response you are looking for.

    I respect you because of your voice and your activism but I think ranting openly about such a trivial issue does a disservice to the vegan message. I use twitter personally for updates on veganism and articles that I find interesting or helpful. I certainly don’t use it to search for peoples’ gripes and complaining. I think it would be in the best interest of your site to keep it more focused on veganism or you might find yourself narrowing the scope of people who are interested in reading what you have to say.

    This is all constructive criticism, which I know you can handle, but I hope what I’m saying makes sense to you. As far as a representative of veganism, I’d prefer someone level-headed and rational, as well as passionate. There’s got to be some kind of balance or you’ll just come off as a heretical, stubborn person and no one wants to listen to someone like that. We should promote veganism through our words and actions so that people are interested in it, not afraid or turned off by it.

  6. Vanessa January 21, 2011 at 10:13 am - Reply

    I’m going to have to fully agree with Kelly. Anyone having a sugar- and caffeine-laced drink of that size needs to rethink their food choices. Yes, coffee can be a vegan drink, but does this REALLY have any impact of the true issues that vegan’s face? I think not.

    Yes, you have full rights to use your website for whatever you choose, and you have every right to get annoyed by anything you want, but if you want people to take you (and as an extension, veganism) seriously, I would recommend that you focus on the deeper issues.

    “Well, I’d be embarrassed if I wasn’t saying anything. Particularly when there is so much at stake” What exactly is at stake? People who drink unhealthy amounts of caffeine will be stereotyped as being ‘crazy’? Oh no! heaven forbid they cut down on how much caffeine they consume!! *rolls eyes*

    “If I could choose a vegan representative, if I could- I’d choose someone that stands up for vegan ethics, unconditionally” Well…I certainly wouldn’t choose YOU as a vegan representative any more. Large sugar-laden caffeinated drinks hardly has anything do to with veganism.

    “take a breath? A numbered list? You have problems with a numbered list?” No, I don’t think any of us have a problem with a numbered list. The problem is that you have blown something completely irrelevant to veganism into a huge deal, as evidence by your numbered list – most of which is just a big confusing mess anyways.

    • KD January 21, 2011 at 11:14 am - Reply

      Vanessa, me too! In hindsight, perhaps I should have spaced my numbered list, made it a bit more clear on why I wrote the post- maybe if I had then it would be easier to understand. I apologize that it seems confusing. My point isn’t about the calorie laden drink- and that is where I think the confusion is coming in. To clarify, my post isn’t about Starbucks. My post is a response to someone else’s post about coffee and how that relates to stereotypes. Mainly it’s about stereotypes.

      Let me explain. Erik could have easily talked about how gigantic the Starbucks coffee was and left it at that. After all, regardless of the size, it is a vegan (or can be) beverage. But he didn’t do that. He tried to be “snarky” and say that people should be institutionalized for ordering a large amount of coffee. By saying that, he was suggesting that the person was crazy. It is a stereotype that all crazy people are institutionalized- it’s certainly not true, and not all people who need help actually get it.

      Why does that matter? How does it relate to veganism? If we permit one negative stereotype to exist, then others will follow. Stereotypes like: Vegans are crazy. Women are bad drivers. Women can’t hold the same jobs as men. Only boys are good at science and math. And so on and so on.

      If Erik had said, “It’s retarded to order that much coffee,” people would be upset. What he said may not have seemed as harsh to you, but it was to a lot of other people. But the bigger issue, the deeper issue is that it’s a stereotype- and not a positive one. It’s kinda the same thing as the kids who use the phrase, “that’s so gay.” It’s a different stereotype, but it’s the same concept.

      Negative stereotypes have the ability to perpetuate discrimination, crime, hate- there’s not one redeeming quality about a negative stereotype. So why do people allow them to continue? If language didn’t matter, people wouldn’t use it. It matters, as you can see from this post, how you present your argument. Erik presented a fact, that wasn’t related to veganism, through the use of a negative stereotype about a certain group of people.

      So, what is at stake? People. Animals. Life in general. If you read this website with any amount of regularity then you notice I talk a lot about unity and consistency. Veganism isn’t just what I stuff in my face. It’s a constant journey towards a life where the animals are free from human use. Whether you should drink that amount of caffeine or not is irrelevant. Looking at the comment another way, is.

      It’s all connected. I’m vegan and I fight for the rights of non-humans. But I also fight for the rights of humans. Whether you know someone who needs institutionalized help or not, everyone at some point in their lives is affected by a negative stereotype. Everyone. Anyone who has can tell you how much it sucks and how untrue they are. They can also tell you how hard it can be to break one once it’s been institutionalized in our society. So let’s stop perpetuating the negativity in the name of “being funny.”

  7. Topsy.com January 21, 2011 at 12:52 am - Reply

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Your Daily Vegan, Tanel. Tanel said: [New Post] That was kinda dickish – http://bit.ly/hVM1sC (via @YourDailyVegan) #caffeine #stimulant #drug #addiction […]

  8. Tanel January 21, 2011 at 12:14 am - Reply

    I also didn’t get the rant..

    Btw.. coffee contains caffeine, which is a psychoactive stimulant drug. People seem to forget the fact that it’s a drug because addiction to caffeine products is so widespread.

    Probably being institutionalized is a way to cure an addiction.

  9. Kelly January 20, 2011 at 11:38 pm - Reply

    I have to agree with Jimmy. A post about how disgusting sizes of calorie-ridden drinks are now available at Starbucks is completely irrelevant to veganism. I don’t understand why it’s causing such an uproar.

    If anything, your rant is more embarrassing to the vegan community. I hope people don’t read your blog and assume that all vegans are so uptight and self-righteous that they assume everything is a personal attack.

    Please grow up (and for the love of god, take a breath.) I might have to un-follow you on twitter if you just use it as a soapbox for your stupid rants. I have only love for my fellow vegans but you are acting in an embarrassing way and I don’t want to be represented by anyone like that.

    • KD January 21, 2011 at 1:20 am - Reply

      Fair enough Kelly, but I think both you and Jimmy missed my point. My post was in response to someone else’s post- the topic, disgusting sizes of calorie-ridden drinks, wasn’t mine- but his.

      Did you read the end of my post on why I wrote the post? Because it seems that you missed it completely. (It’s after the picture you know) Embarrassing is having your zipper down all day without knowing it. Standing up and speaking out on stereotypes on a blog that’s dedicated to speaking out against stereotypes? Well, I’d be embarrassed if I wasn’t saying anything. Particularly when there is so much at stake.

      And listen, I don’t mind your criticism- after all, that’s why I allow comments on my site. But if you can’t realize that this website and my corresponding twitter account are for me to use as a soapbox, well, I just don’t know what to say.

      Except, isn’t that what you’re using twitter for? This website? As a soapbox for your feelings on my post? Isn’t that important? Isn’t it vital to look at situations differently to expand your horizons? (and, take a breath? A numbered list? You have problems with a numbered list?)

      If I could choose a vegan representative, if I could- I’d choose someone that stands up for vegan ethics, unconditionally, and who doesn’t condone happy meat. I’d choose someone that supports other vegans without unnecessary bullying and stereotypes. You mention that you only have love for other vegans- I do as well. So tell me- how is telling anyone that they need institutionalized for buying a large amount of coffee, loving? It’s not. And I don’t want to be represented by anyone like that.

  10. Jane January 20, 2011 at 10:17 pm - Reply

    The best part is that he intentionally does not allow comments on his website, so whenever he posts something obnoxious like that, there’s no way to even attempt to have a dialogue with him. He’s trying to be more like another L.A. vegan blogger that gets attention to her website for being a b*tch and saying the f-word all over the place, the only difference is that with him you can tell it’s forced whereas that other blogger is just naturally crass and doesn’t have a very large vocabulary. In between pushing Amazon books sales every chance he has, I don’t know where he gets the time to write about things pertaining to vegans at all.

    Not to mention that Starbucks will also be offering other stuff in the larger size, like iced tea. Wow, if three servings of ice tea per day doesn’t make me crazy and deserved of being institutionalized, I don’t know what will! .

    In short, you’ve got every right to be annoyed. This new fad of vegan bloggers being assholes or trying to stir controversy over nothing just to get more traffic to their websites really needs to go away.

  11. Erica Rose January 20, 2011 at 9:48 pm - Reply

    Thanks for posting this. I thought the same thing, but I don’t have a blog to vent about it. As someone who is clinically depressed and thisclose to going on meds, I take HUGE offense to it. Also, it’s COFFEE, not nasty milk. It’s vegan, so I don’t understand the need to even talk about it, to be honest. Thanks again.

  12. Anon. January 20, 2011 at 8:10 pm - Reply

    Although I didn’t take his post as a jab at vegans, his writing as of late (especially that post) does annoy me. I hate how sensationalized some vegan bloggers can be, just to try to make everything in the world seem anti-vegan. I wish more people would just focus on the positive aspects of veganism. It seems like a much better way to get the message out.

  13. teddy January 20, 2011 at 8:06 pm - Reply

    i agree whole-heartedly. thank you.

  14. VeganCyclist January 21, 2011 at 1:02 am - Reply

    @YourDailyVegan Markus is a moron, flat out. He should not have domain vegan.com, he’s such a bad representative.

    • VeganCyclist January 21, 2011 at 1:05 am - Reply

      @YourDailyVegan Given that almost nothing he ever posts on has anything to do with veganism, i think you’re entitled.

  15. Jimmy January 20, 2011 at 7:56 pm - Reply

    Umm – Get a life and get over yourself. This is up there with the most pathetic thing I have ever read.

    I’m kinda embarrassed to be a Vegan after reading your incoherent rant.

    Thanks

    Jimmy

    • KD January 20, 2011 at 11:32 pm - Reply

      Thanks Jimmy, but can you tell me why? Why you feel that way?