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Mahatma Gandhi

The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be measured by the way in which its animals are treated
Indian freedom fighter

Mahatma Gandhi, Indian freedom fighter and leader of the non violent resistance movement
Gandhi was vegetarian as part of a conscious ethical choice, not just adherence to Indian culture, as he makes clear in his Autobiography. Gandhi actually experimented with meat-eating in his youth, then gave up meat consumption just to please his mother. Later, in England as a young student, he read a pamphlet by Henry Salt entitled "A Plea for Vegetarianism" which completely convinced him. "From that day forward," Gandhi says in his Autobiography, "I may claim to have become a vegetarian by choice"--and the spread of vegetarianism "henceforward became my mission."
He wrote the book The Moral Basis of Vegetarianism, and was a member and wrote for the London Vegetarian Society's publication.

Quotes: 
The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be measured by the way in which its animals are treated
Vegetarians should have that moral basis – that a man was not born a carnivorous animal, but born to live on the fruits and herbs that the earth grows.
I do feel that spiritual progress does demand at some stage that we should cease to kill our fellow creatures for the satisfaction of our bodily wants.
To my mind, the life of a lamb is no less precious than that of a human being. I should be unwilling to take the life of a lamb for the sake of the human body
Earth provides enough to satisfy every man’s need, but not every man’s greed
You must be the change you wish to see in the world.
I hold that the more helpless a creature, the more entitled it is to protection by man from the cruelty of man