– People of America, I
have the high privilege and distinct honor of presenting to you the president of Animal Hero Kids. – Thank you, thank you,
thank you, everyone. Thank you. Madam speaker, co-presidents,
distinguished guests, my fellow Americans,
what a time to be alive at this moment in history. We live in the most powerful
country on the planet. Our economy is the biggest in
the world thanks to the grit and determination of the American people. We have such a blessed opportunity, in the name of our fathers, to build the perfect union, but, Houston, we have a problem. My duty this evening is
to report on the union, not the state of our union,
but the health of our union, the health of our people, the health of our American community, the health of our great country. On the face of it, our economy is the healthiest it’s ever been. And yet, we live in one of
the unhealthiest countries in the developed world. Our healthcare system
consistently ranks bottom of international surveys, and our people are not living
as long as they should be. Millions of our fellow
citizens are suffering from preventable diseases,
and this is a real tragedy. What is the point of
having all this money, and yet so many of us are
suffering with sickness. There is a solution which not only helps the health of our fellow Americans but helps our economy,
helps the natural world, and the other species that
we share our country with. Imagine a food system
where the most affordable and delicious products can also be good for our bodies and the planet. That’s what we’re talking about here. It’s time to Make America Healthy Again! It is our generation’s task to solve our nation’s health crisis. Our work must begin by
making some basic decisions about our diet, decisions
that will have a huge impact on the health of our
country, but to do that we’re going to need to think differently, a lot differently, about
what we eat as a nation. Everybody knows that we should all eat more fruits and vegetables. That’s common sense, and everyone knows we
should eat less meat. The scientists keep telling us so, but is this information
being taken seriously? I don’t think so. What we’ve got here is a
failure to communicate. We need to take our diets
a lot more seriously if we’re going to Make
America Healthy Again! Among America’s biggest
killers are heart disease, the number one cause of death, cancer, strokes, and diabetes. These four leading causes of
death account for more than two-thirds of all deaths in the U.S., and they can all be
affected by what we eat. A 2018 study by the
University of North Carolina found just 12% of American
adults are metabolically healthy. Just 12%, and let’s not sugarcoat this fact. It’s clear that we have
an obesity epidemic. Nationally around 2/3rds
of the adult population are overweight and 39.6% of adults are obese. That’s the highest figure
in the developed world. And 18.5% of children are obese. That’s 13.7 million of
my fellow American kids whose lives may be cut short due to being fed the wrong foods. The adults are failing
the children of today, and I’m not gonna take it anymore. Our children deserve better,
our people deserve better. About three quarters of our citizens eat too few vegetables and fruits, and Americans tend to eat
way too much cholesterol and saturated fats, the kind that you find in meat and dairy. It’s obvious that we need
to eat lots more plants and a lot less animals. Even a child can figure that out. Vegans suffer less heart
disease, less obesity, less hypertension, and
less type 2 diabetes, and tend to be slimmer than
their meat-eating neighbors. They can also live longer. Vegans tend to eat more of the good stuff, more whole grains, legumes,
vegetables, and fruits, all of which can have a
positive impact on health. Eating better foods opens
the door of opportunity to every child across this great nation. I ask the American people to support this. Choose delicious plant-based foods, and let’s Make America Healthy Again! Healthy people make a healthy workforce. More than 90 million
American adults are living with some form of cardiovascular disease or the after effects of stroke. Direct and indirect
costs of these conditions are estimated to total around $330 billion in health expenditures and lost productivity. Compared to meat eaters,
vegans have reduced risk of cardiovascular disease. More than 23 million or
9.1% of American adults have diagnosed diabetes. The total cost to the economy is around $327 billion. Compared to meat eaters,
vegans have a lower risk of type 2 diabetes. The overall economic impact
of obesity in the U.S. is substantial with total
annual costs in excess of $215 billion. Compared to meat eaters,
vegans typically have a lower body mass index, but why is this not getting
the attention it deserves? Eating too many animals is bad for people and bad for the economy. This is not the American way! My fellow Americans, we need to build a new plant-based economy, and we have a huge opportunity
for America to lead the world in transitioning towards
this healthier food system. We’re already leading the way
in information technology, artificial intelligence,
the internet, and the media, and there is incredible
innovation now underway in the world of plant-based foods. Food scientists are
examining animal products at the molecular level and finding plants with matching proteins and nutrients to create delicious plant-based meats, eggs, and dairy products. These are healthier and more sustainable than conventional animal products. Our innovators are now
making burgers so good that Americans can’t tell the difference, and it’s the same with
plant-based milks and cheeses. Money is flooding into this space. One of the most successful
IPOs of the year was a plant-based meat company, showing that the financial markets
are ready for this. The U.S. is leading the way here, and we are just getting started! Now you might be thinking,
what about our farmers? What about their jobs? Well, this is the best part. Transitioning to a plant-based
economy is great for farming. The growing of fruits,
vegetables, grains, legumes, and herbs is the most
labor-intensive kind of farming. So switching from growing
animals to growing vegetables will create thousands of jobs. Generational change will
always create challenges, but our farmers are among
the best in the world, and we will support them
every step of the way, and staying ahead of the curve on shifting consumer preferences is a great
way for farmers to deliver value for upcoming generations
and reap the rewards. Dairy farmers are already
struggling as Americans drink less cows’ milk, and now we have a glut
of 1.4 billion pounds of cheese held in storage. Our milk supply is outpacing demand, but dairy farms continue to
receive government support, and this promotes further
wasteful overproduction. These big dairies also show
little compassion to animals. I was shocked and saddened
to see the cruelty on Fair Oaks Farms highlighted by ARM’s undercover investigations. Their footage showed young dairy calves being kicked, violently
thrown, having their heads stamped into the ground, and
suffering from heat exposure at a farm known as the ‘Disneyland
of agricultural tourism’. If this is happening on a flagship dairy, what is happening in all
the other mega dairies? How can we do this to them? We need government to
provide financial support to help farmers transition away from animal-based foods to healthier plant-based foods which are increasingly in demand. We can do this! Lets make America’s farming great again! Thank you, thank you. And what about the inhabitants of America who are often forgotten? We need to consider the health
of the billions of animals trapped in filthy factory farms. I’m not blaming the farmers. It’s the system that’s wrong. Nearly 10 billion animals
are slaughtered each year in the U.S., and this breaks my heart. Taking a stand against animal cruelty is a true form of bravery. Boycotting cruel industries is the truest form of patriotism. Factory farmed animals
live in truly unsanitary and stressful conditions. To simply keep them alive, they are given a large amount of medications,
including antibiotics that are critically important for the future of the human race. The more we use them, the more we risk bugs becoming resistant to them, and that means diseases we
have tamed could kill us again. Thousands of Americans are already dying. We can’t get away from this fact. The health of our nation
is directly linked to the health of farmed animals. For the good of all Americans,
we must switch to farming and eating plants, not animals! Farming animals is also
bad for the natural world. A 2016 study found that
emissions from farms are a major contributor to air pollution, and animal waste gets into our rivers too. It contaminates streams,
creeks, and estuaries, and it kills fish. Our oceans are also being poisoned, depleted, and polluted. Our soil on our cropland
is eroding 10 times faster than it can be replenished. We just use so many chemicals
to push production higher, and why do we need to do that? Because we waste so much food by recycling it through farmed animals. If everyone ate a plant-based diet, we would need just 25% of the agricultural land we currently use. Water scarcity is a big
issue for the United States. The Colorado River is
beginning to run dry in places, and Lake Mead in Arizona
could become obsolete. These and other dramatic
changes are already facing us, and still we waste water. It takes eight bathtubs full of water to produce just one
quarter-pound beef burger. And yet nobody is talking about this. Yeah, we can turn off the
faucet while brushing our teeth or take shorter showers,
but the biggest way we can save water is
by changing our diets. Our nation was built on challenges. I challenge our politicians
to put aside their differences in their preconceived
ideas and think about the health of our families. I challenge our government
to help farmers transition away from farming animals
and develop healthier plant-based foods for our nation. I challenge big corporations to accelerate their development of tasty, convenient, and affordable plant-based foods. I challenge schools to provide
vegan food for their children as the default option. Healthy plant-based
food should be the norm, not the exception. I challenge restaurant owners
to put plant-based foods at the center of their menus
and make sure they taste great. I challenge the medical
professionals to look at the health benefits of a whole food plant-based vegan diet. I challenge all Americans
to have the courage to seize this opportunity because America will be stronger for it. I believe in change
because I believe in you, the American people! No matter the challenges to come, we must go forward together. We must keep freedom alive in our souls, and we must Make America Healthy Again! Together we can build the future we want. A plant-based economy provides opportunity and better health for our families, a rising standard of living, and a sustainable peaceful
planet for kids like us. I ask the men, women, and
children of this country to look at the opportunities before us. Our most amazing achievements
are still in front of us. Our most exciting journeys still await. We are Americans. We do the incredible. We defy the impossible, and we must keep faith
in America’s destiny. Thank you. God bless you, and God bless the United
States of America! – U.S.A.! U.S.A.! U.S.A.! Go vegan! Go vegan! Go vegan!

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Methew Wade

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