Reduce violence, give inmates vegan meals

This letter was sent to The Garden Island and to Nolan Espinda, Director of Department of Public Safety, Kauai Community Correctional Center.

Dear Mr. Espinda,

On behalf of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) and our more than 6.5 million members and supporters worldwide, including thousands across Hawaii, I’m writing to suggest that you serve only vegan meals to Forrest Broyles—the man who recently wielded a machete while making death threats against his former boss and vandalizing his home in order to get his share of fish they had caught together.

The actions that Mr. Broyles is being incarcerated for caused his former fishing accomplice to experience fear and trauma, but the actions that started this whole dispute — hooking terrified animals through the mouth, dragging them into an environment in which they cannot breathe, and killing them — did the same to other sentient beings.

Fishing is actually extremely violent, and the scientific evidence has become increasingly clear that fish are intelligent, emotional beings who feel pain and suffer. Research in psychology and criminology shows that people who commit acts of cruelty to animals often also become violent toward other humans. It seems fitting, therefore, to prevent Broyles from participating in further acts of violence while he’s in prison by serving him only cruelty-free vegan meals.

Vegan meals are healthy and easy to prepare, can be less expensive than meat-based dishes, and supply all the nutrients that anyone needs. Some prisons — including Alabama’s highest-security prison, William E. Donaldson Correctional Facility—have found that giving inmates vegetarian or vegan meals can be a successful part of a violence-reduction program.

Vegan eating would also improve his health, since vegans have a lower risk of suffering from heart disease, obesity, cancer, and diabetes than meat-eaters do—which could save taxpayers money by decreasing his health-care costs.

Although none of us can stop all violence, you have the power to prevent Broyles from contributing to more violence by placing him on a flesh-free diet. Vegan meals are also cost-efficient and easy to prepare.

In fact, a vegan meal plan could benefit all your inmates, and we’d be happy to help you with recipes and more, if you’d like to explore this idea.

Thank you for your consideration. I look forward to hearing from you.


Tracy Reiman is the Executive Vice President, PETA.

  1. hutch May 20, 2019 12:12 am Reply

    You can’t be serious. If anything, this would increase violence exponentially. Who on earth would want to be locked up and also made to eat a PETA diet? Cruel and unusual. Please have as much compassion for these poor misguided prisoners as you have for forms of life lower down on the food chain, otherwise known as four-legged steaks.

    1. John Carmack May 21, 2019 6:03 am Reply

      Your hypothesis lacks support, and is based on an understanding of human nature that seems to have been formed by two or three specific movies.

      Millions of people voluntarily eat vegan food. Most of us don’t miss the food we used to eat; we’re healthier, we’re stronger, and most importantly, we’ve reduced our reliance on exploitive systems that are bad for humans and animals alike.

  2. Steve May 20, 2019 6:57 am Reply

    PETA is an actual terrorist organization because they use fear and intimidation as political tools. The kidnap and kill dogs and cats because they don’t believe that we should keep pets. Among many other despicable acts.

  3. Charlie Chimknee May 20, 2019 9:15 am Reply

    Aloha Tracy,

    First off it is critically important that all people, carnivore, vegetarian, or vegan get adequate Vitamin B12 in their diet on a weekly basis. Fortunately the amount is about 3 micrograms per day. WARNING…! But it is not found in the Vegen Diet, which makes for a dangerous situation unless supplemented directly with B12 (methylcobalamine). B12 is found in some fortified breakfast cereals, and found in much seafood, and many animal products.

    After several decades as a vegetarian (no animal flesh in the diet) and a recent near decade as a vegan (means not only no animal flesh nut no cancer causing dairy products; or eggs), myself and others wonder why it is so spiritually offensive to eat animals (finned, winged, or fanged), when all 3 types these (parenthesized) animals eat same or other in Nature’s Grand Design of animal health, in spite of the fact they are sentient beings, and suffer when killed for food…killed by humans or other animals for any reason.

    Plants are sentient too, and they look horrible when supplemented with Glyphosate and Chlorpyrifos, etc. They look cancerous. However fruits and vegetable for some reason look attractive to most humans when raw or cooked and presented on a plate…they look delicious and nutritious, part of Nature’s plan.

    To name a few carnivores…sharks, whales, ono, the big cats, and many of the aerial varieties. Why would Nature provide them meals of flesh in their environment and deny us of same even though we are fang-less and claw-less, possibly clue-less, and don’t have the short mere body-length gastrointestinal tract well suited with flesh protein digestive fluids (of carnivores) that melt flesh vs. our human 20’ + digestive tract more suitable for fruits and vegetables, and as you suggest a healthier life and longevity for our species.

    WARNING: it is dangerous to your life and health if you are a vegen and become deficient in Vitamin B12. You must supplement with it. People have tried by searching the net as to what is the source of Vitamin B12 in supplements…it seems the Vitamin B12 supplements are still made with the microbes found in the gut of animals? If so, that would make no vegen a 100% vegen…can and would someone add correct information to that statement?

    As well, there is the antagonizing critical issue of mandatory ingestion of Vitamin B12 for at least vegans if not also vegetarians, B12 being produced in the digestive tracts of (some) animals, and stored in their flesh and some of their organs, but is not produced in us the humans.

    Vitamin B12 deficiency causes severe neurological degeneration that ruins ones health (even visibly observable by others over time). This neurological degeneration is dangerous and must be avoided by any means, and in many people’s opinion, even if it means eating flesh of some seafoods like anchovies, salmon, shrimp, crab, and shellfish…or winged, finned, or fanged and clawed.

    It’s been said that vegans way back in history, out of environmental necessity or lack of animals in their environ; were able to ingest Vitamin B12 because it was available for some reason in and on things in their environment, e.g., even in the soil. As well as lower sanitation standards like not washing of ones hands or the unwashed fruit and vegetable foods eaten by vegen humans back in history.

    One explanation passed around is that the obsession over sanitation in our modern society has led to the loss of natural occurrence of Vitamin B 12 in the environment of civilized people…over cleanliness. Though we need sanitation for anti disease purposes like cholera, etc.

    Though, with the lack of sanitation as to Ecoli bacteria, a human (and animal?) GI tract habitant, and the level of Ecoli pollution on even tiny Kauai’s streams, canals, rivers, and ocean front sea water environment, it is understandable that not enough sanitation is being kept up. Read the recent Garden Island chart of island waterborne pollution.

    While an optimal vegen diet is optimal for human health and longevity it is imperative it is supplemented with quality and adequate Vitamin B12 supplement.
    And that should be a Methylcobalamine type.

    It flies in the face of reason that being carnivore brings on violence, or that vegans are all peaceful…some are both vice-versy. The Fight or Flight mechanism is born into each of us…a hand down from human historical experience.

    If you are vegen you better be sure you look into Vitamin B12 deficiency and supplementation…and be sure to not go to jail.


  4. Uncleaina May 20, 2019 9:24 am Reply

    lol!!! Oh yeah good idea honey. Tell people in Hawaii that fishing is bad. Our ancestors were bad. We’re bad people because we fish. Entire Polynesian culture is bad. See, she says that fish are highly intelligent and have emotions and feelings just the same as a person. I tell you what girlfriend, you train me some fish to retrieve a ball or help a blind person maneuver around the mall and I’ll believe. Until then, “Hana pa!”

  5. LMat May 20, 2019 9:56 am Reply

    Lol!! I thought the funnies came with the Sunday paper…!!!

  6. RG DeSoto May 20, 2019 10:35 am Reply

    What a load of garbage. Vegan diets are a prescription for disaster and will do nothing to quell the motives of a violent person. Utter hogwash, Tracy.
    RG DeSoto

  7. commonsense May 20, 2019 10:59 am Reply


  8. tunnels May 20, 2019 11:26 am Reply

    Like, seriously??? wtf did I just read. Pass the ketchup please.

  9. rk669 May 20, 2019 5:05 pm Reply


  10. John M Carmack May 21, 2019 6:08 am Reply

    Lots of people posting opinions and YouTube videos (lol) about whether or not this is safe or healthy.

    It is.

    The largest body of licensed dietary professionals in the world, the US-based Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, has this to say on the topic:

    “It is the position of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics that appropriately planned vegetarian, including vegan, diets are healthful, nutritionally adequate, and may provide health benefits for the prevention and treatment of certain diseases. These diets are appropriate for all stages of the life cycle, including pregnancy, lactation, infancy, childhood, adolescence, older adulthood, and for athletes. Plant-based diets are more environmentally sustainable than diets rich in animal products because they use fewer natural resources and are associated with much less environmental damage. Vegetarians and vegans are at reduced risk of certain health conditions, including ischemic heart disease, type 2 diabetes, hypertension, certain types of cancer, and obesity. Low intake of saturated fat and high intakes of vegetables, fruits, whole grains, legumes, soy products, nuts, and seeds (all rich in fiber and phytochemicals) are characteristics of vegetarian and vegan diets that produce lower total and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels and better serum glucose control. These factors contribute to reduction of chronic disease. Vegans need reliable sources of vitamin B-12, such as fortified foods or supplements.”

    The diet is safe. It’s also healthy. It’s also delicious. This letter propeses a marvelous idea to improve the sustainability of our correctional facilities as well as reducing our reliance on unnecessary violence to animals. Plus, for those of you who really hate this idea, at least the prisoners won’t be eating those juicy steaks you all seem to covet so much. 😉

    Also @tunnels: do you think ketchup isn’t vegan? that’s… uh… okay.

  11. Okayden May 21, 2019 6:49 am Reply

    Dafaq did I just read

  12. anahola_unbound May 21, 2019 9:40 am Reply

    Leave it to charlie, for more pontification than we get from his mentor, Gary H. They should rename this section from Guest Letters, to Charlies weekly Bla-Bla….

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