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| | |-+  Should it be illegal to kill animals for food?
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Question: Killing animals for food is:
moral and should be legal   -31 (42.5%)
moral and should be illegal   -0 (0%)
immoral and should be legal   -6 (8.2%)
immoral and should be illegal   -2 (2.7%)
amoral and should be legal   -33 (45.2%)
amoral and should be illegal   -1 (1.4%)
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Total Voters: 73

Author Topic: Should it be illegal to kill animals for food?  (Read 3761 times)
Redalgo
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« Reply #25 on: May 03, 2012, 05:41:02 pm »
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But... but... I don't like PETA. D:
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« Reply #26 on: May 03, 2012, 05:55:50 pm »
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Quote from: BaldEagle1991 link=topic=152904.msg3283464#msg3283464 date=1336082309
The only people who would think it's moral are KFC eaters.
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And other normal, rational human beings.
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« Reply #27 on: May 03, 2012, 06:27:49 pm »
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Amoral/legal.

But if there were a way to get the taste and nutrients without killing the animal (may be possible someday), it would be better than the current situation.
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« Reply #28 on: May 03, 2012, 06:52:48 pm »
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Amoral/Legal
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« Reply #29 on: May 04, 2012, 12:28:25 am »
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But... but... I don't like PETA. D:

Me neither...I have a cousin who is a member, and he's nuts about vegetarianism.

As for me Amoral/legal. Many animals kill other animals for food, and we humans are biologically animals (omnivores) so I guess it's all instinct for us to kill other animals for food.
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« Reply #30 on: May 05, 2012, 03:08:21 am »
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Amoral/legal.

Let's face it I can't see how vegans would survive effectively. And meat's just so delicious.
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Antonio V
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« Reply #31 on: May 05, 2012, 04:44:17 am »
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Of course it's anti-egalitarian. Why in the world should humans and non-humans be treated the same way ? It would be quite an insult to humanity.

It depends on how one opts to frame the issue. I do not support all species having the same rights since we possess limited quantities of resources to work with and they have inherently differing attributes. The inequalities dividing individuals of varied species are markedly greater than those dividing individuals within any given species. As I mentioned before, what I favor is extending social rights to all members of each species (including our own) in accordance to their typical mental faculties. This is to suggest humans should be entitled to more rights than dogs, for example, but that the relatively advanced minds of dogs would also make it morally dubious for a human society to treat dogs and, say, sea cucumbers identically under the law.

Hypothetically, if we at some point in the future make contact with a sentient species of critter from another world, and that species happens to possess far greater mental abilities than us, would it not be insulting to them if we were to cling to a notion that only our species is worthy of being treated with the privilege of personhood? And what if they were to have the same attitude toward us? Do you think it would be righteous or amoral for another species to round us up for butchering to be consumed as exotic cuisine, be killed for some body part or another traditionalists among the alien species consider to possess medicinal or supernatural properties, or to be enslaved? After all, we may seem like mere "beasts" or primitive savages from their point of view. Is there a good rationale for it that doesn't rely on some intolerant, exclusive variation of nationalism, selfish egoism, or some other dismissive notion like "might makes right?"

It is perfectly alright for us to agree to disagree with mutual respect if that's how it will need to be but I reckon when anthropocentrism is taken too far it starts to very strongly resemble other bigoted perspectives such as sexism, racism, ageism, and some forms of nationalism. If taken to their furthest conclusions my values are wholly incompatible with human supremacy.

I think the difference with humanity and other species is greater than a difference in the degree of intellectual faculties. A monkey can prove quite intelligent in several aspect, but this doesn't make it any closer to a human being. What makes us infinitely different from any animal specie is self-awareness. We are not only able to do impressive things with our minds, but we do them consciously. Not by instinct. We are not ruled by the primary instincts which every living species is subject to (even though they are present in us as well), we are able to resist these instincts. We are able to rationalize, to think freely, to formulate concepts. No animal species, even the most intelligent, even come close to doing. That's why I am absolutely convinced, beyond any scientific consideration, that humans cannot be considered as animals. We are too different for a comparison even being possible. How did we manage to shape the entire world to our desire ? How did we reach the supremacy we now hold on the entire realm of nature ? Not because of intelligence, but because of self-awareness. Because of our ability to think ourselves and the world around us.

This difference goes infinitely beyond any hypothetical difference you could find among human being. That's why I think comparing this to racism is utterly ludicrous. It has been scientifically proven that human races don't exist, that there is only one human race. The idea that certain humans naturally have lower intellectual capacities than other humans was factually wrong. Instead, it is impossible to deny the utter and absolute difference existing between a human being and an animal. If there were another self-aware species in the world, we should obviously treat them like we treat humans, because self-awareness, and the ability to reason which goes with it, it the basis of our superior dignity.

This is not to say animals have no right at all. Gratuitous cruelty, mistreatments and complete exploitation should not be tolerated. However, every time the interests of humanity are concerned, animals can and ought to be sacrificed. If making experimentations at a guinea pig can help creating a life-saving medicine, it would be immoral not to do it, because a human life is infinitely more precious than an animal life. And since consuming animal meat is part of the human nature (and culture), it is perfectly justified that we kill animals to eat them. After all, some animals are carnivore, some animals kill each other, so why should we treat them differently than how they treat each other ?
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22:15   ComradeSibboleth   this is all extremely terrible and in all respects absolutely fycking dire.

It really is.



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« Reply #32 on: May 07, 2012, 12:51:11 am »
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After all, some animals are carnivore, some animals kill each other, so why should we treat them differently than how they treat each other ?
perhaps because we can.
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« Reply #33 on: May 07, 2012, 08:51:55 am »
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Only when It becomes illegal to kill plants for food. You bigots, my Bromelias are as living beings as your pets.
« Last Edit: May 07, 2012, 08:53:46 am by batmacumba »Logged

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« Reply #34 on: May 07, 2012, 09:50:19 am »
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Only when It becomes illegal to kill plants for food. You bigots, my Bromelias are as living beings as your pets.

towards a radicalized Speciesism
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« Reply #35 on: May 07, 2012, 11:57:22 am »
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Only when It becomes illegal to kill plants for food. You bigots, my Bromelias are as living beings as your pets.

towards a radicalized Speciesism

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« Reply #36 on: May 09, 2012, 04:42:05 pm »
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Immoral, legal.
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« Reply #37 on: May 29, 2012, 11:31:40 pm »
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I'm not trying to be a dick -- maybe I am a little -- but do you guys really most of these arguments as compelling as you're letting on?

"Animals" would try to kill you if they could?  Some animals would.  Why does a bear entitle you to kill a cow, when it doesn't entitle you to kill a human?

Would you be OK with killing a mentally retarded human with no relatives, if you're using an intelligence test?  Maybe intelligence is your litmus test between "murder" and "Thursday night's dinner."  That seems rather black-and-white to me, but whatever.  Most people arbitrarily extend this at a species level, and this doesn't make much sense to me.

afleitch, you do realize that feeding animals requires many much more agricultural product than vegetarianism/veganism?  Trophic levels. It's not even close.

Antonio, why do you observe that humans have moral intelligence, and then use that to justify slaughtering other animals?  I'm not saying that argument is logically untenable.  However, considering that it's the opposite of the "intelligence -> moral responsibility" connection usually works the other way in our society.  Intelligence holds us culpable for what we do to less capable entities.

I often feel that people are trying to rationalize conventional behavior in this debate instead of seriously considering whether their practices are sound.  I'm inclined to vote Immoral/irrelevant.  At minimum, I think it justifies some pretty thoughtful consideration that I don't think happens often.
« Last Edit: May 29, 2012, 11:38:20 pm by Alcon »Logged

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« Reply #38 on: May 30, 2012, 05:39:39 am »
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Antonio, why do you observe that humans have moral intelligence, and then use that to justify slaughtering other animals?  I'm not saying that argument is logically untenable.  However, considering that it's the opposite of the "intelligence -> moral responsibility" connection usually works the other way in our society.  Intelligence holds us culpable for what we do to less capable entities.

I said the unalienable right to life is reserved to self-aware beings. This isn't the same as saying intelligent beings, which, as you pointed out, would have pretty dreadful implications. Moral responsibility is what compels us not to do what we think should not be done (in a Kantian view, I'd say). An idea of what should be done, and of what I should do, naturally comes only when one first and foremost acknowledges his existence and of the existence of what surrounds it. So yes, if you replace intelligence with self-awareness, I agree with the connection you draw. How, however, does that constitute an argument against killing animals ?
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22:15   ComradeSibboleth   this is all extremely terrible and in all respects absolutely fycking dire.

It really is.



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« Reply #39 on: May 30, 2012, 06:49:03 am »
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Antonio, why do you observe that humans have moral intelligence, and then use that to justify slaughtering other animals?  I'm not saying that argument is logically untenable.  However, considering that it's the opposite of the "intelligence -> moral responsibility" connection usually works the other way in our society.  Intelligence holds us culpable for what we do to less capable entities.

I said the unalienable right to life is reserved to self-aware beings. This isn't the same as saying intelligent beings, which, as you pointed out, would have pretty dreadful implications. Moral responsibility is what compels us not to do what we think should not be done (in a Kantian view, I'd say). An idea of what should be done, and of what I should do, naturally comes only when one first and foremost acknowledges his existence and of the existence of what surrounds it. So yes, if you replace intelligence with self-awareness, I agree with the connection you draw. How, however, does that constitute an argument against killing animals ?

Fair enough.  Are you OK with the slaughter and consumption of humans who lack the current or potential future capacity for self-awareness?  And why is the "inalienable right to life" reserved to self-aware beings, so much so that the punishment for killing a self-aware being is years of imprisonment, while we culturally celebrate the killing of non-self-aware beings?

I'm not saying this distinction is logically indefensible.  It comes down to a fairly arbitrary decision about what life is valuable and what creatures are rights-bearing.  That's fine.  What irritates me is people who pretend these answers are obviously true, completely compelling, or even particularly intuitive.  They're not, and it totally befuddles me why so many people think they are.
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« Reply #40 on: May 31, 2012, 04:55:14 am »
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Fair enough.  Are you OK with the slaughter and consumption of humans who lack the current or potential future capacity for self-awareness?  And why is the "inalienable right to life" reserved to self-aware beings, so much so that the punishment for killing a self-aware being is years of imprisonment, while we culturally celebrate the killing of non-self-aware beings?

I'm not sure what kind of humans would be concerned by such definition. Even the most mentally ill person usually has some degree of self-awareness. The only thing which could fit your definition would be people in vegetative coma (and even then, only those with absolutely no possibility of recovery). Regarding these people, you can call me a monster, but I don't really mind them being killed or not. As for why we don't consume their flesh... I guess that "because it creeps us out" is a sufficient reason. Tongue


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I'm not saying this distinction is logically indefensible.  It comes down to a fairly arbitrary decision about what life is valuable and what creatures are rights-bearing.  That's fine.  What irritates me is people who pretend these answers are obviously true, completely compelling, or even particularly intuitive.  They're not, and it totally befuddles me why so many people think they are.

I don't know why you are bringing this up. I don't think the distinction is obvious or that everybody should agree with me. But it still strikes me as a viewpoint significantly more, say, down-to-earth than that of vegetarian crusaders. I find giving the same worth to any form of life without distinction to be an extremely misguided and potentially dangerous idea.
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22:15   ComradeSibboleth   this is all extremely terrible and in all respects absolutely fycking dire.

It really is.



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« Reply #41 on: May 31, 2012, 09:32:06 pm »
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I'm not sure what kind of humans would be concerned by such definition. Even the most mentally ill person usually has some degree of self-awareness. The only thing which could fit your definition would be people in vegetative coma (and even then, only those with absolutely no possibility of recovery). Regarding these people, you can call me a monster, but I don't really mind them being killed or not. As for why we don't consume their flesh... I guess that "because it creeps us out" is a sufficient reason. Tongue

A profoundly autistic person doesn't have much more self-awareness than domestic animals.  In any case, what kind of "self-awareness" triggers the flip over from "transcendent moral evil" to "Wednesday night's dinner"?  "Self-awareness" is a pretty abstract concept, and probably operates on a spectrum.  We send people to jail for life for killing another human...and yet just down the spectrum, it isn't even socially taboo to eat some fairly intelligent animals.  The kind of "logarithmic" pattern to valuing "self-awareness" seems pretty bizarre to me, more like a rationalization than anything.

Not sure what you mean that you don't know why humans should be concerned with "such a definition."  Because it doesn't affect us, or for some other reason?

I don't know why you are bringing this up. I don't think the distinction is obvious or that everybody should agree with me. But it still strikes me as a viewpoint significantly more, say, down-to-earth than that of vegetarian crusaders. I find giving the same worth to any form of life without distinction to be an extremely misguided and potentially dangerous idea.

I'm bringing it up because it's my reaction to many of the posts in this topic.  I'm not seeing the confusion.

I don't think most "vegetarian crusades" think that all life is exactly equal, and I'm not really interested in defending arguments I think are bad, anyway.  Your position may be more "down-to-earth" than the most militant vegan out there.  However, I don't see why you find your argument "down-to-earth."  You've said that self-awareness is such an important characteristic as to make murder unacceptable.  You've also conceded this is morally ambiguous.  Yet you're not willing to slightly limit our immensely broad food choice to err on the side of caution, and on not slaughtering creatures that are -- to some degree -- "self-aware."

There's nothing to objectively prove that your distinction is unreasonable.  However, that's true of any distinction like this.  This stuff's subjective.  Imagine if society drew this distinction within the human population.  Would you not argue then that there is a moral responsibility to be cautious in the face of these grave, arbitrary decisions, when the only sacrifice is some food selection?  If so, why there, and not here?

I think you probably get my basic argument by now.
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« Reply #42 on: June 01, 2012, 04:42:39 am »
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Only when It becomes illegal to kill plants for food. You bigots, my Bromelias are as living beings as your pets.

And why should living beings be privileged over inanimate objects?  Did the atoms in this computer ask to be made into a computer?  Have I not enslaved them?

In any case, this debate reminds me of this discussion on Andrew Sullivan's blog about whether human consciousness as we know it is actually an extremely recent phenomenon:

http://andrewsullivan.thedailybeast.com/2012/04/what-is-consciousness-made-of-ctd-1.html
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« Reply #43 on: June 01, 2012, 10:10:51 am »
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And why should living beings be privileged over inanimate objects?  Did the atoms in this computer ask to be made into a computer?  Have I not enslaved them?

It always sort of confuses me when people use a caricature of a very unpopular position to attack that position, and don't do the same with the similarly thoughtless justifications used to justify the mainstream position.  This is especially bizarre considering this argument hasn't been presented in this thread, but plenty of comparably terrible ones on the other side have.

No one is arguing -- nor would anyone intelligent likely argue -- that it is wrong to eat anything that could theoretically be arbitrarily ascribed rights.
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« Reply #44 on: June 01, 2012, 10:48:55 am »
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A couple of you want to make it illegal for me to eat meat?  Really? How is that even enforceable?  Are we going to hire a bunch of meat police?
« Last Edit: June 01, 2012, 11:02:48 am by Torie »Logged
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« Reply #45 on: June 01, 2012, 11:40:24 pm »
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Amoral is defined by the absence of principles that decide right and wrong. In this case, it would be defined as humans not knowing that killing animals is wrong. At first, I thought this absurd, as we would never start a post if we didn't have such morals. But then I considered it, and I found amoral/legal to be the best option. The average American goes to a McDonald's and orders a hamburger. When enjoying this hamburger, the American cares not about what is in or on the burger, nor how the animal to make that burger was killed. They merely care about the taste, therefore I choose amoral/legal
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« Reply #46 on: June 02, 2012, 01:54:40 am »
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Not only legal, it should be mandatory. People should earn a meat licence - when they're 16, they need to go and kill an animal, skin/pluck/prepare it, and then cook it to earn their licence.
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« Reply #47 on: June 02, 2012, 06:34:24 am »
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Not only legal, it should be mandatory. People should earn a meat licence - when they're 16, they need to go and kill an animal, skin/pluck/prepare it, and then cook it to earn their licence.

Wait would that license be for restaraunt owners who kill animals for meat or would it be for the consumers?
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Quote from:  Edward Gibbon
Religion is regarded by the common people as true, by the wise as false, and by the rulers as useful.


Quote from:  Albert Einstein
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Quote from:  Lucius Annaeus Seneca
Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity.

Quote from:  Ronald Reagan
You can tell a lot about a fellow's character by the way he eats jelly beans.
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« Reply #48 on: June 02, 2012, 07:23:06 am »
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A couple of you want to make it illegal for me to eat meat?  Really? How is that even enforceable?  Are we going to hire a bunch of meat police?

Pretty minimal enforcement (e.g., licensing) would probably be enough to drastically cut down on meat consumption.
« Last Edit: June 02, 2012, 07:29:51 am by Alcon »Logged

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« Reply #49 on: June 02, 2012, 09:18:11 am »
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A couple of you want to make it illegal for me to eat meat?  Really? How is that even enforceable?  Are we going to hire a bunch of meat police?

Pretty minimal enforcement (e.g., licensing) would probably be enough to drastically cut down on meat consumption.

Did you rip off the licensing thing from me in chatting with Badger about the penalty for abortionists? Tongue  Can you imagine what will happen to the value of my Iowa corn fields if folks all stopped eating meat?  Oh the horror! 
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