Non-Human Animals: Crash Course Philosophy #42

Remember Cecil the lion? A lot of people were shocked – even outraged – when they heard about his death at the hands of an American hunter in 2015. The response to the lion’s death was so strong that the guy who shot Cecil basically went into hiding, until he issued an apology. But isn’t that a little bit strange? We react with horror when we hear about a majestic lion being shot, or sacks of kittens being tossed into rivers, or owners training their dogs to fight each other for sport. But, what’s the difference between killing Cecil and killing a deer, or a duck, or a cow, or a chicken? [Theme Music] How do we reconcile the strong feelings many of us have about certain animals – mainly the cute ones, like kittens and puppies – with the way we actually use animals in our own lives? Most of us think nothing of using non-human
animals for their meat, milk, or skins. And not only do we use animals in these ways,
but using them as we do almost always harms them. A common method for testing cosmetics, for example, involves restraining rabbits and putting the product into their eyes, leaving it for a set amount of time, and then washing it out and checking for ill effects. Rabbits are used for this because they don’t have tear ducts, so they aren’t able to flush the product out of their eyes the way our eyes would. It may not surprise you to hear that this can be extremely painful, and often blinds the rabbits, which are then euthanized. On factory farms, chickens are housed in tiny cages, with each bird occupying a space the size of a standard piece of printer paper. Their beaks are often cut down to keep them from pecking each other, and when they’re no longer laying enough eggs, they’re killed. These are just a couple examples of the conditions animals experience at our expense, and they’re not unusual. We’d never dream of using another human being in these ways, but we think nothing of doing it to non-human animals. So, how do we let ourselves do that? Contemporary Australian philosopher Peter Singer uses the word ‘speciesism’ to describe giving preference to our own species over another, in the absence of morally relevant differences. Singer reminds us that there was a time when most Americans thought it was totally normal and right for members of one group to literally own members of another group – based on a morally irrelevant difference – skin color. And today, the members of the oppressing group look back on the reasoning of their ancestors with horror and shame. Well, Singer predicts that there will be a time when our descendants look back on us and our treatment of non-human animals with the same reaction. In a nutshell, Singer says, if it’s not ok to do it to a human, it’s not ok to do it to an animal either. Now, you might think you agree with him, because
who doesn’t love bunnies and kittens?! But do you really agree with him? If you agree that we should treat like cases alike, and that a difference in treatment requires a morally relevant difference, then you have to identify the differences that justify treating non-human animals in ways that we would never subject humans to. One arbiter you might use to justify the difference
is intelligence. There’s no question that, as a species, our intelligence trumps that of every other species on the planet. But we don’t normally think that intelligence
is a good way for deciding how you get treated. Dystopian novels like Brave New World bring out the visceral distaste we have for that kind of intelligence-based caste system. So if it’s clearly wrong to treat members of our species differently based on intelligence, why would it be ok to treat members of other species differently on that same basis? Well, one response might be to argue that the difference in intelligence between the smartest and the least-smart humans is much smaller than the intelligence gap between humans and other species. But empirically, that’s not true. Sure, most humans fall within the same general range of intelligence, but some humans are profoundly cognitively disabled. And some animals – particularly primates – are probably more intelligent than those severely impaired humans. So that argument doesn’t hold up. But, maybe you think we should treat other
animals the way we do, just because we can. Contemporary American philosopher Carl Cohen,
for example, calls himself a “proud speciesist.” He argues that every species is struggling to claw its way to the top, and that’s how it should be. Every species ought to be most concerned about protecting itself, he says, and since humans are currently at the top, well, that means that we’re the best, so we can do pretty much what we want to other beings. The problem with this reasoning is, you’d almost certainly not be ok with it if you weren’t a member of the privileged species. Remember, this is the exact argument that was given by slave owners to justify their domination of Africans and indigenous peoples. So if you don’t normally think might makes right, then wouldn’t it be hypocritical to use it as a justification in this case? Yet another rationale is that this is this
is the way it’s always been. And it’s true: Humans have been dominating
non-human animals for a really long time. It’s part of our culture, and entire ways of life are based on it: farmers, ranchers, fishers, and so on. But arguments from tradition are always philosophically
suspect. The mere fact that something has been a certain way for a long time says nothing about whether it’s good. And once again, that was the same argument
used in defense of slavery. And yes, the abolition of slavery was economically costly and a huge disruption of slave-owning culture. But I think that we all agree: it was totally
worth it. Still, one of the strongest arguments for our uses of non-human animals is the argument of need. Most people believe that we’re justified
in doing what it takes in order to survive. In fact, most people even think it’s ok
to kill another human in the name of self-defense. This argument doesn’t justify using animals
for non-necessary things like cosmetics testing, but eating is a necessity, so there’s nothing
wrong with eating animals. Right? The problem is, we know humans can be perfectly
healthy without eating animals. So yes, you need to eat, but you don’t need
to eat animals. For his part, Singer says we should think about the treatment of non-human animals in terms of an Equal Consideration of Interests. This means that identical interests should be given equal weight, regardless of what type of being they occur in. Of course, humans have all sorts of interests
that animals don’t have. Some of us have interests in going to college,
and voting, and getting married. And non-human animals don’t have an interest
in doing those things. So we don’t have any obligation to help
them do that stuff. But there is an interest that we all share:
We have an interest in avoiding pain. Singer’s utilitarian ancestor,
Jeremy Bentham, said, “The question is not, ‘Can they reason?’ nor
‘Can they talk?’ but rather, ‘Can they suffer?’” Because we’re all alike in our capacity
to suffer, and in our desire to avoid suffering. Utilitarians like Bentham and Singer say that we need to equally consider that interest, and that we’re unjustified in preferencing human interests over non-human ones. Now, to be clear, as utilitarians, these thinkers would never issue an out-and-out prohibition on the use of non-human animals. What they’re against is the unthinking assumption
that animals are at our disposal. Since they’re in the group of things that feel – like humans – they must be factored into the utilitarian calculus. So if the issue is really about need – if you’re literally starving and the only thing around to eat is an animal, they’d argue that you’re morally justified in eating it, because the suffering involved in your death by starvation would outweigh the suffering of the animal. The problem is that, for most people in the industrialized world today, it’s not about need. It’s simply about taste, and convenience,
and how things have always been done. But let’s head over to the Thought Bubble
to look at this from another angle. Here’s Fluffy. She’s been your close companion since she
was a kitten. You love her very much, and you’ve given
her the best life you could. But now Fluffy is nearing the end of her life. You’ll care for her until the end. But when she dies why not eat her? I mean, unless you’re a vegetarian, there seems to be no good reason that you’d be repelled by this idea. But you almost certainly are. Take some time here to think about why that is. It can’t be about harm, because Fluffy is
already dead – she can’t feel pain. Maybe you’re appealing to some sort of principle
of respect for the dead. But we know that some cultures think the best
way to respect the dead is to consume their flesh. So if you’re only not eating her because you have a thing against eating cats in particular, but you’re ok with eating other animals, that seems pretty speciesist. It’s just that the species you’re giving
preference to are both humans and cats. But you’re still a speciesist. Thanks, Thought Bubble! OK, so Singer has given us some pretty strong reasons to re-evaluate our treatment of non-human animals. But you still might be thinking, “Why should
I care?” What if I don’t care that I’m a speciesist? I like eating meat, and feel no shame about
it, because everyone I know eats meat too. Well, the thing is: Philosophers want you
to be consistent with your beliefs. They want you to think about why you think it would be wrong to eat Fluffy, or why you wouldn’t eat dog meat if it was served to you, or why you were upset about Cecil the lion. And yet you have no problem eating, say, bacon, even though dogs and pigs have the same level of cognition and awareness. Philosophers want you to be able to justify
your actions, to give reasons for what you do. So if you’re saying that reasons don’t matter – that you can just do what you want even if your actions are internally inconsistent, then not only are you not doing philosophy, well, you’re sort of opting out of rational
discourse altogether. Because if these reasons don’t matter, then
why should any reasons matter? If I want to be a racist or a homophobe or a sexist, and I’m comfortable with it because the people I hang out with have those attitudes too, well, the conversation’s sort of over. It can be hard to really scrutinize your own actions, not just regarding non-human animals, but in most areas of your life. Today we learned about moral considerations
regarding non-human animals. We took a look at what philosophers like Peter Singer and Carl Cohen have to say about their use, including the concept of equal consideration of interests. Next time, we’re going to look at moral
obligations regarding our families. Crash Course Philosophy is produced in association
with PBS Digital Studios. You can head over to their channel to check out a playlist of the latest episodes from shows like: The Art Assignment, Braincraft, and PBS Infinite
Series. This episode of Crash Course was filmed in
the Doctor Cheryl C. Kinney Crash Course Studio with the help of all of these awesome people and our equally fantastic graphics team is Thought Cafe.

  1. My reasoning behind why i wouldn't eat a pet after it dies is that that some animals, like cats, dogs, or horses have a long history of serving people in ways that are not meant for food. So by eating these animals, you are betraying the service you get from them and give to them. These animals are allies to humans.

  2. Oh lawd PRAISE Peter Singer. I for one do not feel it's okay to harm certain animals at all. I'm currently trying to transition to vegetarianism and then veganism simply for the sake of the animals. Their lives are not worth less just because they're not human. If anything, I think they're better than us. Non judgmental, not going out of their way to destroy the only planet we have, not murdering other animals just because they can.

  3. In Christianity and other religions it is implied (if not, stated) that other animals are simply means to an end. This is because there is a distinction made between humans and all other forms of life. So I am comfortable eating them. If you want to be vegan thats fine, but I do not believe I should have to treat animals the same as I treat other people.

  4. Wow. I'm amazed at the simplicity in this topic. There's SO much that you just never mentioned that would put the debate to bed immediately. Normally I'm very impressed with CrashCourse, but you really disappointed me on this one guys. I mean, you're not even going to bring up the issue of anthropomorphizing even once? Or the differences in brain structure that biologically prevent many animal species from even comprehending things that are mostly autonomic to us? Or the differences between sentience and sapience, and how many species of animal aren't even capable of self awareness (for example canines aren't self aware even in a fairly basic interactive sense, while elephants and dolphins possess supremely developed self-awareness and emotional patterns)? Idk… I kind of expected better from you guys in this arena. Oh well.
    Don't worry, I still love ya!

  5. There are claims in this video that are made as though they're supported by scientific consensus, when they are decidedly not so.

    Morally, though, I don't disagree with him

  6. No animal deserves to be abused and oppressed by the superior life form. None of them do, regardless of what they are.

  7. Is it okay to boil children in pots or suffocate them in bags? Why do we do it to chicks and cephalopods?

  8. I basically went from being a vegetarian to someone who'd be ok with human flesh(legally provided) cuz I couldn't give up on milk and other dairy products.

  9. I think to say that all humans can survive without meat is kind of a blanket statement. It's not exactly easy to gain weight on a vegan diet. You look up ways to gain weight, and vegetables are the food group they tell you to AVOID. I'm trying to get up to a healthy weight, so I try to go for meats, eggs and cheese. Different humans have varying/different needs. To say that we can and should all just go vegan is kind of oversimplifying things. I wouldn't support inhumane treatment of animals, but I think that harvesting products from them in humane ways is justified.
    It's not very severe in my case admittedly, but I have a friend who is so underweight that she risks organ failure if she doesn't start putting on some pounds. I think she'd be justified in taking the easiest and quickest route to gain weight, and like me, she eats a lot of animal products.

  10. My theory is this.
    All life are same if it suffer, however we are more emotionally attached to other humans and pets, and other species are more attached to their own species as well. However, again if it is for food or last stand self defends it is justified to kill.
    Like or comment if you agree.

  11. @crashcourse I've been watching your philosophy videos and I just wanted to say "thank you" for all of this hard work!

  12. We need meat for protein.
    Protein is required for muscle growth so that we can perform normally in our daily lives.
    Other sources of protein like soyabean and artificial sources are costly so everyone cannot affords it.
    Humans became so intelligent after we started consuming fish .
    I think this is a food chain and all animals have adapted to this food chain. If we stop eating meat the food chain will be disrupted.

  13. We make rules so we as people can live peacefuly in our society together, that s why we have as human have the right to own our property. We include animals as property because for our society the right to own property is more important than the right to live of an animal. So if you make some rights for animals than you only can force it by infringing human rights, If you think the right of animal to be free is more important compare to the right to do whatever i want with my property than that makes sense. But for me as a Libertarian i don't want to force other people to stop doing things where there are no human victim that i disagree with. Why i don't my dog because the moment i gave him a name he became my friends my family, i can and have eat dog meat but my dog i probably won't althoug i don't think it is wrong to do so. For myself i think the reasson i won't it him because the rule don't eat family, friends is more important than the rule don't waste your property. If you don't see your dog as family/ friend and see him only as a tool than i can understand why you would eat it.

  14. Just a thought in my mind: animals aren't considering the idea of avoiding eating humans. if a random person had unintentionally wandered to cecil the lions area with no protection, the lion most likely would not have hesitated to attack the person and eat him alive.

  15. I love meat. I think it'd be very hard to live without it. I also believe and some theories in nutrition would agree that eating meat is good for humans (in a certain amount of course, but I know I eat way more than necessary). I'd like to only eat meat from places that I know treat the animal well. Because it's nature. All animals that eat meat have to kill other animals to eat. For me the problem is with the excesses of the meat industry, trying to maximize profits in the expense of the animals' suffering. I see eating meat as a biological need, but the problem is the way we kill those animals. But yes, I face a moral dilemma, because I'd like to be a better person on this issue, but I'm afraid that eating meat is too important to me to give up on that.

  16. Argument from nature. Animals eat other animals. See carnivores. We shouldn't be more moral than nature is. It's artificial morality. Not grounded in nature.

  17. What if there still is an argument for necessity? In many places around the world, non-meat protein is especially hard to come by without being impractical and expensive. I think it would be insensitive to as a third-world family in poverty to spend money on soy beans which can give them less protein than meat.

  18. Why do other animals eat other animals and we call that survival, but when people eat animals it is not necessary?
    Does this make sense?

  19. i'm against mass animal factories, and am excited for the introduction of lab grown meat, but we can't go on believing that animals are not killed when harvesting crops, for instance rabbits in the harvesters, or bugs poisoned from pesticide, there are still many deaths on either side so why not eat the foods which provide more sustenance until another option arrives.

  20. Here's the thing when lab grown meat has arrived we would have hopefully circumvented this Problem.
    Not with lab tests though. Hopefully that will follow.

  21. After looking into eyes of young pigs transported by big truck to my city and destined for my lunch, I become vegetarian. Its already 4 years and I am still alive and active. They looked at me like innocent children silently asking me : Why? What we did to you?

  22. It’s wrong to compare carnivore humans to racists and homophobes because of an inability of coming up with a consistent philosophical argument to motivate their actions. (The obvious argument here is I eat animal meat because I am hungry) It’s wrong because there is an obvious distinction between the two species. A non human animal is by the scientific term an animalia. A human is a homosapien. There is a difference. You provide a carcass to an animal (cat, dog, etc) it will eat the carcass, it will defecate on the carcass. It will not care because it is incapable of a second thought. I don’t have a problem with my fellow man and woman wanting to not eat other animals but when my emotions is being manipulated for their agenda, that’s the line. Hank, I appreciate your service as an educator(if you are one) but some of these videos have glaring bias therefore devaluing their philosophical importance

  23. "We know we can be perfectly healthy without eating non-human animals"

    Actually we don't know that, and maybe most people would get sick of the don't eat meat.

  24. singer has special needs he is a Nazi us catholics are allowed our opinions singer has sick views on poorly children his brian cant be normal kill him like he wants to kill others

  25. What about consciousness? Why isn't that on the list? If we define consciousness as repressing instincts and being able to think and communicate with reason, sure some animals are conscious (like apes) and we are morally obligated to act towards them in a different manner than we act agains non-conscious animals like chickens. But some animals are not conscious and if they are not conscious, how can they feel pain, and even if they do, does it matter? Consider this, if you punch someone in such a way that they blackout and that there is no way for them to understand that they were hit, have they been harmed? In what way is cutting the beak of a chicken different than cutting a branch off of a tree?

  26. Just because one cant identity the morally relevant difference between species does not prove it does not exist. Thanks for the video.

  27. But what if you would be willing to consume a cat, just not YOUR cat?Afterall, it is your property so you should have no obligation to eat it if you feel it immoral. Regardless of the overall benefits of vegetarianism, this reasoning that it is speciesist because you wouldn't consume a pet is similar to saying its speciesist to not eat your injured sibling while starving in the woods, but would still eat an injured stranger.

  28. I have a dream where we live in a world where an animal is not judged by the shape of their form.

  29. anyone who liked this video, i recommend you look up dr melanie joy's video on carnism. peace and love up <3

  30. Life has intrinsic value, but it is not equal. Sometimes the cost of killing an animal is worth what it renders, that is food. And regardless of what anyone says, meat is a healthy and proper part of our diet, which we have evolved to consume, and is also delicious.

    The value of a cow is not comparable to that of feeding a family for a year. Now if I took that same cow and killed it for no reason then it would be morally wrong.

    This is why most people likely had an issue with Cecil the lion being killed. Not because actually killing him was bad but because it was such a blatant disrespect for the value of life. The value of a trophy hunt, in the eyes of most people, does not lightweight the value of a majestic animal like a lion.

  31. Lets take a look at your moral considerations of using pastel against white. Pastel is a very desaturated family, so if you're going to use it, putting it against white when you're trying to highlight words is a bad choice.

  32. Thank you very much for this episode. I do want to point out that the argument of 'it has always been this way' is also just wrong. We must not forget that the bio industry is something of modern times. The way we keep and treat non-human animals now (think about the thousands of pigs in a very small space together in pain, animal transport that goes horribly wrong, mass production of milk) does not resemble the way we treated animals a long time ago. Buying meat in the supermarket that is produced via the horrific ways of the modern bio industry is very different than going out to the woods and shoot a wild dear with a spear and then eating it whole yourself (even though I personally beleve that eating animals is never okay)
    Conclusion: Go Vegan!

  33. Also, the commends make me very happy! I am really proud of all of you guys going vegan, even if we live in a society that mostly looks down on veganism, ridicules it and tells you to continue eating meat (at least, this is what I experience in the Netherlands)

  34. But if you're a vegan and eating plants (who can sense pain just like animals) how are you any different?

  35. The thing with justifying not wanting to eat non-human animals is about privileged humans idealizing about the future without understanding the nature of things. All animals have an instinct to consume energy and to dispense that energy, via the law of entropy. Some specialize in certain foods, while others specialize in other foods, naturally developing different types of food obligations.

    I've said it before and I'll say it again; those who display even the slightest confusion between house pets and food animals should NEVER be allowed to have pets. A house pet is a being we've chosen to adopt into our family; a food animal is a part of our food obligation. What do you think cats eat? Do you know if your cat's food obligation suffered? Do you think that we are all somehow so privileged that we ought to end all sufferage in the world, before we even understand the nature to each and every thing that suffers?

    Causing another animal to suffer is not good, no. If we can synthesize the kind of nutrients that are found in our food obligations and successfully commercialize them to sustain a global human population, by all means! Right after that, we'd have to do the same for all animal populations on the planet. It's just that, we are not quite there, yet, not by a long shot. It's healthy to ponder these things, but it is by no means healthy to make a conclusion, right at this moment, NOW, without understanding the nature of things.

  36. The logic is simple really. Do you agree animals can suffer – 99% of people including meat-eaters would say yes. Is their suffering necessary for our nutrition and well-being? The answer is clearly no because happy and healthy lifelong vegans exist. People either do not use their reason, conveniently choose not to think about the issue or accept the arguments for veganism but cannot break their bad habits or selfishly think might makes right.

  37. The only reason humans are "the most intelligent" is because humans created the concept of intelligence. Intelligence does not equal superiority.

  38. if i need food i eat meat if i need to make sure a drug is not deadly to humans i use it on animals first if there is no need to that i should not do it

  39. A rare miss!

    Growing up on a farm, people do become attached to the cattle, rabbits, etc. and still slaughter and eat/sell them. The cat is a poor example as there is no market for cat meat and (to my knowledge!) there is very little information out there on safely preparing it for consumption.

  40. One of the problems of this philosophy is that of "pain". Extremely difficult to define philosophically. Additionally, there exists a notion that some (and perhaps all) plants actually do exhibit symptoms of what looks to human researchers like pain receptors. When a tobacco plant begins to become supper for some hungry caterpillar, it lets off a chemical signal to alert its peers and perhaps even to attract the caterpillar's predators. Intelligence is a difficult concept to quantify.

  41. I would only avoid eating Fluffy because of her old age and unknown cause of death. I wouldn't want to eat spoiled meat. Same reason I'd avoid cannibalism – too many conditions to contract.

  42. I'm currently a vegetarian and have been for 15+ years now. I haven't gone full vegan mostly because I find the title as kinda toxic just based on the people I've met who label themselves as such.

    And as far as I'm aware, correct me if I'm wrong, but some of the animal products that I do eat (milk and whatnot, not that I eat milk unless it's chunky) is fine since things like not milking a cow and cause it great discomfort.

  43. CrashCourse
    : I'm curious to see whether you are vegan. After presening this topic, I can't see how you could not be. so I'd be interested in knowing whether doing this video had an profound impact on you. or perhaps you were already vegan? thanks 🙂

  44. Being sad about a hunter killing an animal is just idiotic I think why value an animals life over a humans

  45. I would like to point out one flaw in one of the arguments. You said there are no health losses from not eating meat, but that is not true from a nutritional standpoint.

  46. I thought this would be educational.. but this is just a rant about being vegan and how speciesism hurts the animals and is a ‘waste’, people eat meat because it is nutritional and gives us protein… not because it is morally justified.

  47. Wait a minute, wouldn’t contractarians say that it’s pretty much okay to do whatever you want to non-human animals since they are not rational? Sure, rational, self-interested beings beings like ourselves will understand the inherent benefit of taking care of nature and animals, but if we didn’t, it wouldn’t exactly be wrong, would it?

  48. When does taste have nothing to do with it..
    “ if a sewer rat taste like pumpkin pie I’m not eating the filthy animal” Jules

  49. At the current time of this comment being posted, I will not stop eating meat. I, however, understand fully why many people don't eat meat. The ideas in this video are very well thought out and have invoked a self dilemma that I will be thinking about.

  50. This is exactly why you mortals will be COMEPLETELY SMITED if you do not give up your rule to a legitimate deity.

  51. The question after watching this is that why we bother to pass our philosophical thoughts to animals, to argue that they suffer, for example. Why there is no moral discussion of consuming plants? Is it means that we regard animals to have personal identities?

  52. Well … meat tastes good , and i like it. So i eat it. That's the reason.
    We feel sad for some animals death cause these are ones that we had a bond somehow by being together , or just emotional bond by knowing its story etc…
    food is good. Meat tastes awesome.
    Some pigs are cute , some are not , both tastes great.
    Some humans are cute some are not.
    Wouldn't care if some people died , would care if close people would die.
    Same for animals.
    People die everyday, we are not concerned about everyone , cause they're not closely related , we only care a bit cause they're same species as us , lets say , from the same group/club . But animals die everyday as well , i care not. Only if would be closely related. If not , whatever .
    We dont need to make then stop suffering. We dont need to sympathize with them just cause we have a level of understanding as it is.
    Animals also kill each other
    Humans kill each other
    Sons kill fathers and vise versa
    Baby sharks kill each other even on the womb…
    The world is cruel , death is not painful or sad. Pain hurts but after it there's nothing to discuss… live and die, many things matters not…. that's it…

  53. What about animals that arent developed enough to suffer? And furthermore, whats the ethical difference between a vegan eating a salad and a jellyfish?

  54. We are controlled by evolution not philosophy. If there is an evolutionary advantage to something it will happen when it becomes a disadvantage it will stop. Black slavery ended because of market forces and machinery not because people got more noble.

  55. We don't have to eat meat to survive?? WOW, where will we be getting majority of our PROTEIN requirements? And animals (including humans which belong to the KINGDOM ANIMALIA) are NOT the ONLY LIVING ORGANISMS on this planet, there are ALSO VAST SPECIES of the KINGDOM (1) PLANTAE; (2) FUNGI; (3) PROTISTA; (4) Eubacteria; and (5) Archaebacteria. When we DISINFECT/KILL HARMFUL MICROBES, ARE WE SPECIESIST to that particular species of BACTERIA. When we eat plant materials, are we not HURTING any of the plants where those were taken? Isn't that SPECIESIST to PLANTS?? If we PRIORITIZE MORALITY over BASIC INSTINCTS, then we SHOULD NOT EAT ANYTHING AT ALL, because ITS SPECIESIST TO ALL the LIVING ORGANISM on this PLANET. Maybe we should also NOT BREATH anymore because its "CHEMICALIST" to OXYGEN because one of the end product of our metabolism is CO2, thus destroying/hurting the OXYGEN. If we DO ALL of that, maybe our "SPECIES" will be EXTINCT ON A DAY or so. What's the DIFFERENCE between a CARNIVORE which is SPECIESIST to ANIMALS with a VEGAN which is ALSO SPECIESIST to PLANTS? They are GENERALLY BOTH SPECIESIST, RIGHT?

  56. I wouldn't eat my dog because of the emotional connection I have with it. I also wouldn't eat it because it's man's best friend and has evolved along side us to have a special bond.

  57. I do understand why someone would become a vegan. But I feel no mercy for anyone other than my friends. So no. Will not become a vegan. Not until people consciously bring the world population down to its half. Because unless that happens, there's no chance of any mercy surviving in the human world. Let alone the animal world.

  58. Expecting someone like me who's had to fight everyday to survive to actually feel mercy and not kill animals, is like expecting a horror story to have a happy ending.

  59. This doesn't seem right…
    Think about this. You have the chance to save either two rats or one human. According to the belief all species are equal, you would choose two rats, because there's two of them, and only one human. Because both the rat and human are equal, it should be right to choose the rats because there's more of them, therefore outweighing the life of the human. When I think of it this way, this ideology doesn't sit right with me…

  60. I'm okay with the fact that it may be socially unacceptable to eat meat, but what about the carnivorous animals who have to hunt and kill other animals in order to preserve their own survival? I don't think that it would be consistent to say that it's wrong for humans to not eat non-human animals but have it be okay that non-human animals can eat other non-human animals.

  61. People don't realise eating our friends makes you stupid and when you die you will become the animals you've eaten. Then they will tourcher and eat you and that is the law of nature.. KARMA.

  62. My philosophy is morally consistent on this point. If it's cute enough, I won't eat it. True, this does imply that eating ugly people is okay, but the strict legalism of my philosophy prevents that.

  63. "We'd never dream of using another human being in these ways." Um… no, we have both thought about and actually done these things to other humans.

  64. We are different than other species in ways that we all know and don't need explaining. However animals have the right to live too. I love animals. I'm not a specisit. Firstly, on an individual level, no animal must experience suffering. If we want their meat or skin their death must be painless and without suffering. The conditions under which they're kept must not be uncomfortable or just plain cruel, like they are today for most farm animals. And secondly on a species level, we must do all there is in our power to prevent any species from extinction. Even those that we think are harmful to us. When I hear about deliberately trying to reduce and exterminate mosquito species it disgusts me!!! No animal deserves that. Not even mosquitoes!

  65. I was scared to read comments cuz people just hate the idea of veganism but the comments are not aggressive here!

  66. Thank you so much for making me and so many others to think about animals. Since animals cannot speak for themselves, people should speak up for animals exploited in human society.

  67. Most of these same arguments could be used to describe the killing of plants, as well. Just because a plant doesn't have a brain or a central nervous system, like animals, doesn't take away from the fact that, in order to utilize them for sustenance, we must first kill it. The real question is, "Why do we care?" No other plant or animal stops to consider moral implications surrounding what they eat. Why should we? The fact that we do and then turn around and question why we do is the real conundrum.

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