Being a vegetarian isn't a "punishment," it's a choice people make because they think it's the right thing to do. Is driving a Prius a punishment? (Could have got a Camaro.) Is recycling a punishment because it involves two receptacles instead of one? Is not hitting your sister a punishment? Hitting her might have been more fun.
For you it might not be a punishment, and that's totally valid. But for me it would be. Being denied good things is what I call punishment! And yeah, I would rather have the Camaro (actually I don't really like that kind of car, and I hear the Prius is pretty nice, so that's a bad example;)"Hitting your sister" isn't a good analogy because in that example, I'm the only one doing harm--it's my responsibility. With eating meat, the meat industry is the one doing the harm, without my approval. It's their responsibility to change (and the government's responsibility to make them change), not mine to make them change.In the end, I think I'm just admitting that I'm more selfish than you are, and I'm resigned to this fact. I'd rather be selfish and satisfied than altruistic and miserable. I know this isn't very Buddhist of me, and I'm not exactly proud of it. I'm just being honest about how I feel. So, I defer to you on being a better person, but I gotta be me, ya know? :)