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  1. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spiny Norman
    Speaking for myself only, I differentiate between human life and animal life on the premise that human life is specially created by God and is therefore fundamentally superior in value to any animal life. Humans demonstrate superior intellectual capacities and are also capable of making moral, philosophical and aethetic judgements in ways that animals cannot.
    So if there is a disabled human, completely incapable of making any moral, philosophical and aethetic judgements am I allowed to eat them? Of course you have seen them alive and then they die, so you don't conflict with "thou shalt not kill', which seems a double standard, but whatever.

    Your god is morally weak. Also you have chosen a cop out option which forces the argument to a stan still because you need to prove your god exists and I have to prove your god does not exist, regardless my first statment is true if he happens to exist.

    Can I say all people who eat animals and will burn in hell because it is murder and my God is right, without being questioned?
    Last edited by Saragossa; 21-08-2010 at 02:28 PM.
    And still, no one has satisfactorily proven, that it isn't opposite day.

  2. #47
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    Once you buy the moralistic premise you get sucked all the way to Regan and Singer or else you wind up in an inconsistent and arbitrary position.
    Completely true in a pure moral/ethical debate; however, in a pragmatic sense any reduction of suffering is a good thing. For instance, I have a friend who eats meat when other people make it for him (perhaps once every two weeks) but refuses to eat meat otherwise. Even though he is in an inconsistent moral position, the effort to reduce suffering can only be positive.
    Last edited by Saragossa; 21-08-2010 at 02:43 PM.
    And still, no one has satisfactorily proven, that it isn't opposite day.

  3. #48
    Monster of the deep Kevin Bonham's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Saragossa
    For instance, I have a friend who eats me

  4. #49
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    He has truly transcended the barrier between human, animal and plant life, by simply eating them all!
    And still, no one has satisfactorily proven, that it isn't opposite day.

  5. #50
    CC Grandmaster road runner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Saragossa
    The two lives are seperated by humans and the cruelty humans inflict.
    I don't understand this statement.

    When I buy organic vegetables, the vegetables have lived, what I consider to be a far more natural life than a farmed pig. I have seen naturally occuring yams and I have seen organic potato farms; the potato farm seemed to replicate nature far better than the farmed pigs' lives.
    To follow this argument to its logical conclusion, you should have no problem eating meats that Rincewind mentioned earlier, Eg Wild venison.

    This is true, but the concept is the same. If you can justify an animal's death, for food, how can you not justify a human's death, for food? If I set up a hypothetical where animals were as socially based as humans, do you believe we would stop eating them?
    No, to extend my argument with your hypothetical would be to say that if the animal was as sociatally based then they would not eat each other.

    Re justifying, I am not the one imposing morality on meal choices so I feel no need to justify my choice. You are the one doing so, so you should justify your choice to eat plants. I mean every seed you eat is a stolen life of a tree that could have been planted. I don't know how you can live with yourself.

    How is it a flaw? If anything it furthers my argument, if I cannot justify the plants I kill, how coould I possibly justify killing animals? How can you do it?
    You seem to be in agreement that it was a flaw when you thought I proved you to be a hypocrite.

    Simply put you are saying that you cannot justify X (eating animals) or Y (eating plants), and therefore you choose to do only Y. Makes no sense.



    As do I.
    Well if you are going to set the bar for what we can eat at what we know can suffer, then you should allow for several animal choices in your diet.


    Some animals don't suffer; the root of the problem is we see the animals as our resources, they are a seperate life and should not be ruled by us.
    But as I said before they would not even be born if they were not born for the purpose of feeding us. Now you may not see any value in a cow allowed to quite freely graze, procreate, raise young etc for several years, but I'm not so sure I would agree. Isn't some life better than no life.

    I also have this opinion on slavery, which I see as practically identical to animal farming. Everyone else seems to love slavery.
    Such as who?
    I don't eat either of them. Why should I have to justify omnivores' problems?
    It was a rhetorical question which I had answered in my preceeding comments. The two reasons I proposed that we might be OK with eating tuna but not dolphin are that we sympathise with the dolphin becuase it is more like us, and that it has more congnition.
    I assume if I had any animal sitting in front of me I could indentify it easily, to a certain extent. Any human would be a different instance as I would have to take moral gauge of their previous actions etc, regardless I think in a majority of the situations I would choose human survival anyway.
    Oh so you want to play god, and just let the person live if he is up to your standards. Well why not take the animal out of the hypothetical altogether and let's just let you decide who can live and who can die on a daily basis shall we.
    meep meep

  6. #51
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    To follow this argument to its logical conclusion, you should have no problem eating meats that Rincewind mentioned earlier, Eg Wild venison.
    I stated earlier that if I hunted and killed my own meat I would eat it.

    No, to extend my argument with your hypothetical would be to say that if the animal was as sociatally based then they would not eat each other.
    I realised early I had misunderstood what you were saying and thus I made my idiotic statement. Please, allow me to clarify. The fact that humans are social creatures has nothing to do with life and death, the legality of eating humans is impairing your ability to see the parallels between animal and human life. As far as I understand it seems to be, as I don't really get the significance of humans being social creatures.

    Re justifying, I am not the one imposing morality on meal choices so I feel no need to justify my choice. You are the one doing so, so you should justify your choice to eat plants. I mean every seed you eat is a stolen life of a tree that could have been planted. I don't know how you can live with yourself.
    You make it seem as if I am creating some crazy new idea that we should think about how what we eat is treated, I am not imposing morality, the morality is intrinsic.


    You seem to be in agreement that it was a flaw when you thought I proved you to be a hypocrite.
    Not a flaw against killing animals, a flaw in my lifestyle.

    I am, to an extent, a hypocrite, but in proving this, you have proved yourself an even worse person because the meat you eat is fed on plants (more plants than we eat) and I assume you also eat vegetables.

    Simply put you are saying that you cannot justify X (eating animals) or Y (eating plants), and therefore you choose to do only Y. Makes no sense.
    I have reduced the suffering significantly, you appear to be doing nothing. Also seeing as I had to boycott one it seems extremely logical to eliminate X because it is clearly the worse of the practices.


    Well if you are going to set the bar for what we can eat at what we know can suffer, then you should allow for several animal choices in your diet.
    Thanks for the advice.

    But as I said before they would not even be born if they were not born for the purpose of feeding us. Now you may not see any value in a cow allowed to quite freely graze, procreate, raise young etc for several years, but I'm not so sure I would agree. Isn't some life better than no life.
    'the beef grazing industry does not currently have a specific code of practice' http://www.anra.gov.au/topics/agricu...eef/index.html

    The National Beef Cattle Feedlot does, but I see no evidence of the wonderland you describe, I am open to more evidence. If you read Regan's excerpt you would also see there is a wrong in abusing animals as resources regardless.




    Such as who?
    Animal slavery, I can barely see the difference between animal farming/slaughter and slavery, do enlighten me.

    It was a rhetorical question which I had answered in my preceeding comments. The two reasons I proposed that we might be OK with eating tuna but not dolphin are that we sympathise with the dolphin becuase it is more like us, and that it has more congnition.
    I don't eat either of them, as I said before.

    Oh so you want to play god, and just let the person live if he is up to your standards. Well why not take the animal out of the hypothetical altogether and let's just let you decide who can live and who can die on a daily basis shall we.
    I clarified in the last sentence that in a majority of cases I would spare the human life, I have already expressed my opinions in another thread on capital punishment. You seem to be happy playing god with animals, but their lives aren't worth anything so it is all good.
    And still, no one has satisfactorily proven, that it isn't opposite day.

  7. #52
    CC Grandmaster road runner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Saragossa
    I stated earlier that if I hunted and killed my own meat I would eat it.
    Regardless of its suffering? I put it to you that if you were to hunt and kill something that it would likely suffer a lot more than a similar creature being killed by a professional.

    I realised early I had misunderstood what you were saying and thus I made my idiotic statement. Please, allow me to clarify. The fact that humans are social creatures has nothing to do with life and death, the legality of eating humans is impairing your ability to see the parallels between animal and human life. As far as I understand it seems to be, as I don't really get the significance of humans being social creatures.
    My comment was in regard to you bringing up cannibalism. As such, any parallel you might raise should be animals eating their own species. So far this does not appear to be what you are doing.

    You make it seem as if I am creating some crazy new idea that we should think about how what we eat is treated, I am not imposing morality, the morality is intrinsic.
    You are attempting to impose your morals on others. If you think you should think about how what you eat is treated, then fine. It's when you start replacing the you's with we's, as above, that you are imposing.

    Not a flaw against killing animals, a flaw in my lifestyle.
    So why prescribe it to others.

    I am, to an extent, a hypocrite, but in proving this, you have proved yourself an even worse person because the meat you eat is fed on plants (more plants than we eat) and I assume you also eat vegetables.
    Only when I can't avoid it.

    Allow me to illustrate why it is an inconsistent postion for you and not for me.

    You cannot justify eating animals
    You cannot justify eating plants
    You do not eat animals
    You eat plants

    I make no attempt to justify eating animals
    I make no attempt to justify eating plants
    I eat animals
    I eat plants

    See the difference?

    I have reduced the suffering significantly, you appear to be doing nothing. Also seeing as I had to boycott one it seems extremely logical to eliminate X because it is clearly the worse of the practices.
    Again you use a moral argument. Also I question that the level of suffering is significant.

    'the beef grazing industry does not currently have a specific code of practice' http://www.anra.gov.au/topics/agricu...eef/index.html
    Selective quoting.

    The National Beef Cattle Feedlot does, but I see no evidence of the wonderland you describe, I am open to more evidence. If you read Regan's excerpt you would also see there is a wrong in abusing animals as resources regardless.
    Whether or not it is a "wonderland" would you like to comment on my question as to whether such a life is better than nothing? I mean do you really hate animals so much that you would will them out of ever existing?

    Animal slavery, I can barely see the difference between animal farming/slaughter and slavery, do enlighten me.
    Not so fast, you said "everyone else" loves slavery. Tell me who you mean.

    I don't eat either of them, as I said before.
    l2read. it was a rhetorical question.

    I clarified in the last sentence that in a majority of cases I would spare the human life, I have already expressed my opinions in another thread on capital punishment. You seem to be happy playing god with animals, but their lives aren't worth anything so it is all good.
    You are the one who would deny them a life at all. I am not so arrogant as to ask for a summary of someone's life before deciding whether to save it.
    meep meep

  8. #53
    CC Grandmaster Spiny Norman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Saragossa
    So if there is a disabled human, completely incapable of making any moral, philosophical and aethetic judgements am I allowed to eat them? Of course you have seen them alive and then they die, so you don't conflict with "thou shalt not kill', which seems a double standard, but whatever.
    You are making an error here, by giving an example of a single human, whereas I was referring to humans as a category.

    Quote Originally Posted by Saragossa
    Your god is morally weak. Also you have chosen a cop out option which forces the argument to a stan still because you need to prove your god exists and I have to prove your god does not exist, regardless my first statment is true if he happens to exist.
    I don't need to prove that my God exists, for the purposes of this argument; I am simply pointing out that this is a starting assumption for the establishment of my point of view. If you don't accept that God exists, then you are right to dismiss the argument from your perspective, however that doesn't make my position invalid, it only makes your position invalid if you were to make the same argument as me and also deny that God exists.

    Quote Originally Posted by Saragossa
    Can I say all people who eat animals and will burn in hell because it is murder and my God is right, without being questioned?
    You can say whatever you like. Its your right. Just don't expect everyone to agree with you if its (a) just plain wrong, and/or (b) illogical, and/or (c) lacking sufficient grounds.
    “As you perhaps know, I haven't always been a Christian. I didn't go to religion to make me happy. I always knew a bottle of port would do that. If you want a religion to make you feel really comfortable, I certainly don't recommend Christianity.” -- C.S.Lewis

  9. #54
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    I'm working on a response to both as we speak, it is a large body of work and I will get back to you both in good time.
    And still, no one has satisfactorily proven, that it isn't opposite day.

  10. #55
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    Philosophy Class in School - Animal Cruelty

    Hi guys, for Philosophy at school we are currently studying the issue of eating meat. For our assessment task we have to write a dialogue discussing one particular aspect of eating meat, and as the unoriginal I am, I chose the topic of animal cruelty. Anyway, I have come to a point where a found an argument from the vegan point of view that I was unable to refute, and since I find it highly unlikely that I have found a silver bullet in the issue of eating meat I have turned to the internet in order to obtain a response, anyway here is what I have so far:

    Scott: Welcome Daniel, I’m glad you could join me tonight.
    Daniel: Thank you Scott, I’m glad to be here.
    Scott: If you would not mind, I would like to discuss the morality of eating meat, and more specifically: the issue of animal cruelty. I understand that you that you do not believe eating animals is an immoral practice; nor do you think that the eating of domestic farm animals can be considered as cruel; is this correct?
    Daniel: I can assure you that you are correct in your understanding.
    Scott: Thank you for your confirmation. As I see fit there are two key issues to examine when examining whether or not eating domesticated farm animals can be considered cruel.
    1) The first of which is whether or not there is anything inherently wrong with killing life for food. Is there any inherent value within life?
    2) The second issue (and owing to time constraints, this is the one I wish to discuss) is whether or not animals are treated cruelly in order for us to obtain our food.
    Would you agree with me that these are the two main issues? The life of a domestic farm animal is an undoubtedly miserable one. As livestock you are seen entirely as a source of revenue, the entire purpose of your life is to gain weight and (if applicable) produce commercial products (e.g. eggs and milk). To highlight this issue, I would like to discuss the life of a typical domestic pig:
    - Pigs are left in dark rooms for nearly 24 hours a day .
    - Pigs live most of their lives on grids; this causes them to have foot injuries1.
    - Pigs spend most of their life in extremely confined spaces, causing them to stress and chew on the rails of their cages1.
    Animal cruelty in farms extends far beyond this; chickens too will never see the light of day, suffer from bone diseases and will lose many of their feathers ; and if a doe does not produce seven litters in a year they are killed (this means there is a replacement rate of 90%)1.
    It is clear to me that typical treatment of a domestic farm animal is appalling, if humans were subjected to these conditions it would be considered abuse. Would you agree that such treatment could not be considered ethical?
    Daniel: I do indeed agree that this is not ethical; however the problem here is that such treatment need not be the case; pigs and chickens could be farmed in open environments, while does could simply not be culled for a low production rate. The problems are there, but so are the solutions, we need not consider a practice unethical if it needn’t be unethical.
    Scott: Daniel, while I do admire your optimism, I do not think your approach is realistic. The amount of meat we consume requires such unethical treatment of livestock, meat prices would raise significantly if farmers needed to own more land. If pigs didn’t live on grids the conditions would be considered unsanitary, and the human population would have to significantly decrease its consumption of meat if we were to adopt these new conditions.
    Additionally, laws removing such practices would be nigh impossible to enforce, farming is one of Australia’s biggest industries and it would be extremely difficult to ‘catch’ all those who broke these laws. Your position Daniel is idealistic, but not realistic; so many problems need to be solved if we are to adopt more ethical practices. How can you justify such a view when it is so unlikely to occur?
    Daniel: Indeed Scott I understand your scepticism, but we must always be trying to solve our problems, regardless of how difficult it may seem.
    Scott: But surely it is not worth the time when we can simply not eat meat? There are many more reasons arguments against shouldn’t eat meat, eating of meat can have severe health issues, and the environmental consequences are disastrous! Would it not be easier to simply cease eating meat?

    Of course if you notice any errors with spelling, grammar etc. corrections would be appreciated!
    Jack

  11. #56
    Reader in Slood Dynamics Rincewind's Avatar
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    It is an interesting dialogue however I have a problem with Scott's position about the enforcing of more humane farming practices being both economically detrimental and difficult to enforce. His alternative (it appears) is vegetarianism. Now how does he propose to enforce that and what will be the economic impact of that regime.

    Assuming Scott is not talking about enforced vegetarianism then his solution will only work if a significant proportion of the world's population make that choice, which is exceedingly unlikely for a number of reasons. Since even if Australia was to become 100% veg then farming industry could in theory continue completely for export. Also if rather than vegetarianism, Scott convinced everyone to purchase only ethically grown farm products he would probably get a higher number of converts and improve the lot of at least some animals in Australia which are being farmed to cater for the ethically farmed domestic market.

    The most successful strategy in my opinion would be to lobby to enact laws to ban inhumane practices in the farming industry. This is a long game and would involve a number of small goals along the way. Of course educating people to choose ethically farmed animal products as well to help grow the domestic market these goods.
    So einfach wie möglich, aber nicht einfacher - Albert Einstein

  12. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rincewind
    It is an interesting dialogue however I have a problem with Scott's position about the enforcing of more humane farming practices being both economically detrimental and difficult to enforce. His alternative (it appears) is vegetarianism. Now how does he propose to enforce that and what will be the economic impact of that regime.

    Assuming Scott is not talking about enforced vegetarianism then his solution will only work if a significant proportion of the world's population make that choice, which is exceedingly unlikely for a number of reasons. Since even if Australia was to become 100% veg then farming industry could in theory continue completely for export. Also if rather than vegetarianism, Scott convinced everyone to purchase only ethically grown farm products he would probably get a higher number of converts and improve the lot of at least some animals in Australia which are being farmed to cater for the ethically farmed domestic market.

    The most successful strategy in my opinion would be to lobby to enact laws to ban inhumane practices in the farming industry. This is a long game and would involve a number of small goals along the way. Of course educating people to choose ethically farmed animal products as well to help grow the domestic market these goods.
    Thank you for the reply RW, I'd just like to clarify a few things. The point of the dialogue is to discuss whether or not it is possible for humans to eat meat meat without treating animals unethically, not whether or not it is realistic to enforce laws that would outlaw the eating of meat. I am aware that this makes the task significantly easier for Scott, but they were simply the requirements for the dialogue.

    My second thing that I'd like to clarify is that I am looking mainly for a rebuttal against Scott's final point, as otherwise the dialogue would simply be too biased against the meat eaters point of view.

  13. #58
    Reader in Slood Dynamics Rincewind's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jhughes
    My second thing that I'd like to clarify is that I am looking mainly for a rebuttal against Scott's final point, as otherwise the dialogue would simply be too biased against the meat eaters point of view.
    I deal with that in the other thread.
    So einfach wie möglich, aber nicht einfacher - Albert Einstein

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