12 July 2010

Henry S. Salt (1851-1939) on Progress

Henry S. Salt (1851-1939) Does Vegetarianism progress? Yes and no, according to the expectations, reasonable and unreasonable, that its supporters have been cherishing. If we have fondly hoped to witness, in the near future, the triumph of the humaner living, it must be allowed that the actual rate of progress is extremely disheartening; but if, on the contrary, we work under a rational understanding that a widespread change of diet, like any other radical change, is a matter not of years but of centuries, then we shall not find in the slow growth of our movement any reason for dissatisfaction. Revolution in personal habits, be it remembered, is even more difficult than revolution in political forms, and needs a greater time for its fulfilment; and looked at in this light, Vegetarianism has made as much progress, during the past half-century, as any other cause which aims at so far-reaching a change.

(Henry S. Salt, The Logic of Vegetarianism: Essays and Dialogues [London: The Ideal Publishing Union, 1899], 114)