Much fodder is made about how humans treat animals. You’ll hear arguments about how we humans are animals (agreed) as if that means that we should be treating them as friends. I would argue that because we are animals, we should be treating them better than they would treat us. Considering many animals in the wild
would simply kill us, use what they want, then leave the carcass behind for the next creature, our use of animals is far more ethical than their use of us.That being, we are living up to a higher standard.

Vegans don’t want to use any animal products for any purpose as they believe that it’s
not ethical. Milk, eggs, leather, fur, all the obvious targets. But what would
it really take to be a true Vegan, and what would that mean for modern society
and the environment? Like most topics in the world, it’s not as black and white
and as simple as saying Meat is Murder since 1985.

When I think about Chickens, I think of eggs and meat. I eat both. This morning I had
scrambled eggs, Sausage Patties made out of Textured Vegetable Protien (Morning
Star) and Hash Browns. It was a vegetarian meal as a matter of fact. But it’s
shallow and narrow to picture chickens as just food sources. Chicken eggs are
used to incubate pharmaceuticals. The Flu Vaccine is incubated in eggs which
would be a violation of Vegan ethics even though it may arguably prevent the
deaths of 187,500 to 375,000 (250,000 to 500,000 deaths per year with a 75%
effective rate) people a year. Link Sounds like a good argument to me. It’s so
wrong to use a chicken egg that up to 375,000 people a year should die. This is
not unlike the embryonic stem cell argument at all, is it?

More over in Chickens, their billions of pounds of feathers are being used to create
new clothes. The feathers trap air better than regular cotton and make them
particularly warm. This will save billions of gallons of water in cotton
production as well as tens of thousands of gallons in cotton production from
the farm to the factory with a renewable product. Potentially the feathers can
be made into plastics as well which will again lower oil production
requirements. I suppose this is the height of immorality.

How about Pigs? I’m going to give an entirely too short synopsis of this great 8
minute TED Talk about the many uses of pigs. There are 189 commercial uses for
pigs. Many of them are not even food related. Ever heard of a pig heart valve?
How many lives have been saved by pig heart valves being installed since 1975?
How many people are alive due to pig derived insulin for Diabetics? Train
brakes, Bullets, paint, sandpaper, paint brushes, soaps, shampoo, toothpaste,
breads, cellular concrete in roads, beer, wine, juice, etc. The fact is, you use pigs daily. It doesn’t matter if you are vegan or Muslim, you are surrounded by them. Would a Vegan suggest killing this pig for the valve and not eating or using it in any other way? Video

Cows have 81 uses that also surround you. Sheetrock, adhesives, glass, imitation eggs, etc. Imitation Eggs. That’s awesome. You try to actually become a vegan
only to find that you are eating cow products. You couldn’t even escape using
cows if you wanted to.

Animal use in and of itself is not an immoral thing. We are animals and many chose to
ignore this for reasons that I do not understand. By this fact alone, we are
not held to a higher standard that other animals. Nevertheless, we do act with the
intent of using the entirety of the animal that we slaughter. If you were
killed by a tiger, he isn’t going to turn your bones into glue, he’s going to
leave your bones behind with no intention of using them and the use of those
bones by others is incidental.

What would be immoral is to not eat the meat or eggs of the animal but need to
slaughter them simply for soap, or the sheen found in paint, or the sheet rock
it sits upon. When you suggest that it’s immoral to use animals for heart
valves, diabetic insulin, or the other 300 (made up number) uses, you are
frankly suggesting that either we change our way of life or potentially that
people should be dying in support of an opinion. The person making the claim
that animal users are immoral need to come up with solutions for each and every
one of the other problems. You are welcome to a vegan diet if you choose. You
are welcome to advocate it for health reasons. But it’s disingenuous to say no
meat, no leather and pat yourself on the back because you only have 298 more
problems to go or you’ve only made the animal less valuable and more susceptible
to maltreatment. Th
e problem requires much more than a simple heart string tug solution,
that is, if you actually care about animals.

Views: 597

Comment by Rocio Hernandez on November 8, 2010 at 1:15am
I'm not a vegan myself.
But the answer to many of your questions is: hemp!
I know you can make oil, milk, and clothes from hemp (But the clothes are not as comfortable as cotton clothes).

Beyond that I'd loved to hear what other people have to say.
Comment by Joshua Rosso on November 8, 2010 at 1:22am
Great post. And as a "vegan" i think it raises a lot a valid arguments. But if i may let me add some things from my point of view. Yes we're animals and yes we are undoubtably more moral in our killing strategy...but not necessarily that which exists prior to "the slaughterhouse" meaning with factory farming used to produce the majority of meat, we find the conditions in which are most profitable to produce these meats and products is absurd. Granted will it stop by just stopping your food consumption? No, like you perfectly explained it will continue for all of the nonfood products. I guess what i'm really trying to get at here with my arbitrary view on "vegan" it's an environmentally friendly commitment to REDUCE the means in which we treat animals.....and from my point of view i also believe evolution has left us in a place where sustainability is best achieved without many of these foods...but that's another topic. But i think of veganism like this: You can buy energy conserving lightbulbs..... are you haulting your use of electricity and stopping your impact on global warming? No....But you are lessening it.
Comment by V John Merc on November 8, 2010 at 2:26am
I'd love to be a vegetarian, but NOT vegan :/

I'm 3 weeks now not on meat. Just vegetables, a few eggs, and glasses of milk. After 5 weeks I can join the Vegetarian group here.
Comment by Lindsey on November 8, 2010 at 2:32am
I'm a vegetarian because eating something that used to be alive and do all the things living animals do (breathe, vomit, urinate, poop, etc.) creeps me out, not from any moral objection. Yes, I know its completely irrational, but I can't help it: finding that vein in my beef burito when I was seven totally traumatized me for life. I couldn't look at meat the same way again. But y'all can eat all the animal and animal bi-products you want, I really couldn't care less.
Comment by Sydni Moser on November 8, 2010 at 6:44am
Jesus, Anyone can join the Vegetarian Group if they are simply interesting in learning about it, want tasty recipes, discuss issues, wondering about health concerns, etc. So join up whenever you'd like, starting to post recipes for Thanksgiving without the poor turkey of course : )
Comment by Loop Johnny on November 8, 2010 at 8:31am
I'm not a vegan myself.
But you cannot overlook the healthy lifestyle that is a result of vegetarian diet. The only drawbacks are the discomfort you get when you abstain from eating a certain meal and the "not-so-tasty-and-fat" aspect of meat.
Comment by Atheist Exile on November 8, 2010 at 12:56pm
Great post, Gaytor,

Sometimes it seems that people just need a cause to rally behind. Vegans and vegetarians certainly do walk the talk, for the most part. Of course, they're not really vegans or vegetarians if they cheat. But non-hypocritical vegans/vegetarians seem admirable to me.

But if these same vegans/vegetarians tell me that I should not eat meat, then I would tell them to kiss my ass -- or eat my meat :-). YOU don't want to eat meat? Fine. I admire your conviction. It's good to abide by your beliefs. You want to lay a guilt trip on me because I eat meat? Don't even think about it.

It's kind of like religious Islam versus political Islam . . . religious vegan/vegetarian versus political vegan/vegetarian. You have your way, I have mine. Don't tell me my way has to be your way.
Comment by Gaytor on November 8, 2010 at 1:39pm
@ AE, at the same time, meat eaters can be fanatical too. Not by moral design, but due to health, caloric, sustenance, and cost factors, I eat nearly 60% vegetarian. Rarely do I eat red meat and at family gatherings, I stick out. You are cooking ribs you say, I'll bring some chicken for me and the bride. I just don't even enjoy it except for the odd steak or burger maybe a half dozen times a year. My rotund family often shakes their head and asks why as if I've never answered the question or they can't see why. I suppose I should ask them to go for a run with me so that we can discuss it. :D
Comment by Atheist Exile on November 8, 2010 at 1:59pm
Neal, YES, of course. Cheating is about intent . . . is it not? I'm talking about the surreptitious KFC orgy when you think nobody's watching :-)
Comment by Atheist Exile on November 8, 2010 at 2:11pm

According to Neal, that would make you a flexitarian. I think about the Western world, a hundred years ago . . . who would have ever thought about veganism? Vegan diets aren't you traditional human fare.

An often overlooked fact is that a HEALTHY vegetarian diet isn't sustainable in many (if not most) parts of the world. And vegan lifestyle? Forget about it. It's not even sustainable in the richest countries.

Reminds me of Inedia.

Here's what Wikipedia has to say about Inedia . . .

"(Latin: "fasting") is the ability to live without food. The word was first used to describe a fast-based lifestyle within Catholic tradition, which holds that certain saints were able to survive for extended periods of time without food or drink other than the Eucharist.

Breatharianism is a related concept, in which believers claim food and possibly water are not necessary, and that humans can be sustained solely by prana (the vital life force in Hinduism), or according to some, by the energy in sunlight (according to Ayurveda, sunlight is one of the main sources of prana). The terms breatharianism or inedia may also refer to this philosophy practised as a lifestyle in place of the usual diet.

While there is not peer verified scientific support for the claims, some promote the practices of breatharianism as a skill which can be learned through specific techniques.


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