Marlins of Mercy: Eli Lyons


“Going into high school, I became really interested in being a vegetarian and focusing on my eating habits. I wanted to make sure I got the right nutrients I needed because when you cut meat out of your diet, you cut out a huge source of protein. Going through the process of becoming a vegetarian, you learn different supplements for protein. Becoming a vegetarian made me a happier and healthier person, and I definitely noticed a mood change. Being vegetarian can be expensive because many of the products are organic. I am the only one on this diet in a family of five. It’s weird going out to dinner sometimes because I will have to make special requests that fit my diet. The only thing I still eat that contains animal by-products is cheese. Cutting cheese out of my diet will be super hard, but I am willing to face that challenge in order to pursue a vegan lifestyle. Hopefully, I will become a full vegan before I graduate college. I know that’s a long ways away, but I want to achieve this because I believe it’s better for you and the animals.

From a young age, I’ve always loved animals, never been grossed out [by them]. I got super interested in animal rights, especially in regards to makeup testing and leather because I love both makeup and fashion. Still, sometimes I find myself using animal-tested products and I remember how bad animal cruelty is. I think all animals deserve to live, even insects like bees and ants. I am definitely against places such as zoos, circuses, and horse-races. I even have a poster in my room that reads ‘Circuses are not fun for animals’ ,and I put animal rights stickers on my [school supplies]. I did both my 8th grade and freshman year speeches on animal rights.

I am looking forward to my future with Animal Rights Club at Mercy. I enjoy Animal Rights Club because all you have to do is have a passion for animals. [The leaders] do such a good job [of] encouraging us to go to events and use things like cruelty-free makeup. I wish we met more often than just on club meeting days because I think it’s so interesting. This lifestyle has changed me for the better and improved the overall quality of my life.”