“[One student] keeps posting about goats and sheep and pigs and dead pictures and them being slaughtered,” said agriculture student Katie Velon, who attends Elk Grove High School near Sacramento.
The online allegations also include angry words for the school's agriculture program, saying it “leads to the slaughtering of animals.” Other messages describe how animals are drained of blood while their hearts are still beating.
But the agriculture students say they’re proud of what they do and of what they’re learning.
“I don’t think it’s fair for people to be saying that, because they don’t understand the work we put into all these animals. And it’s something we voluntarily do,” said student Miranda McCurry.
The debate heated up online after outside vegan groups became involved, calling meat-eaters “carcass crunchers.” Some students have also reportedly been passing out fliers on campus.
One of the vegan students involved spoke with FOX40 but declined to go on camera or be identified by name. She said no vegan Elk Grove student has used the “carcass cruncher” term and that she has not passed out any fliers.
The agriculture students said they make no apologies for raising animals for food, but that they do understand the vegans’ concerns.
“It’s depressing,” Velon told FOX40 in Sacramento. “But it’s still fun to work with [the animals] while they’re alive.”