Hi Startree, I can see you are very passionate about this and this is of course a huge subject. It will take an lengthy essay to go in to it at depth. A few points then. All things are indeed connected, and we are also connected to the plant world and the trees. Vegans also say that we can eat plants, because they are not sentient. Of course Druids disagree with this.
The way you are describing it, the words you use, is purely human emotion. Animals are sacred, and they deserve our respect, just as plants and trees are sacred and deserve our respect. So how can we make a distinction there? I’m pretty sure the wolf and the deer respect each other, in ways that we can’t really comprehend, but still the wolf eats the deer. Purely biological we eat animals because it constitutes a healthy diet. Vegans lack all sorts of nutrients, and have to supplement with chemicals and drugs. Of course, don’t eat meat or dairy from the absolutely horrendous meat-industry. But eating meat and the large scale industry are not the same thing, althougth vegans always conflate these things for emotional arguments sake. When I eat meat, I’m always deeply aware of the sacrifice that has been made. Again, I abhor the large scale industry. I think the whole vegan trend is just a sign that we move away from nature and the natural state of death. We are not outside of the cycle, and city life has made us disconnected from it.