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Apple Seeds vs Animals

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I just wanted to answer @Phil 's comparison between plants & animals, and his reasoning for dismissing the vegan stance on why it’s more ethical to choose non-animal products for nutrition, in the modern day and age, (I’ll clarify that it’s very brief & only regarding ethics).

First of all, the definition of veganism is, (I’ll give you the one from VeganSociety): "A way of living which seeks to exclude, as far as is possible and practicable, all forms of exploitation of, and cruelty to, animals for food, clothing or any other purpose."

Now, without going into extreme detail on the topic, the trait that vegans argue is the one for deciding which foods are more ethical/unethical to eat is sentience. In simple words, sentience is the capability to experience the world subjectively, and in the case of animals, they can, as well as feel pain, stress and will to live. In the case of plants, they’re not sentient and do not have a complex nervous system. Even then, one of the counter-arguments that some people bring up against vegans sometimes, is the fact that some plants generate different electrical impulses as a reaction to stimuli, in an attempt to dismiss the argument, however this is not sentience.

If you’ve read the definition above, now you’re aware that veganism is all about causing the least amount of pain & suffering when needless, and because in this world in order for you to sustain your body, something inevitably will die, (because it’s pretty much imposible to avoid it with the current technology), the conclusion is that the most ethical stance when it comes to this, is veganism. You know pesticides are also used in agriculture, which result in the death of other living creatures like insects, (other attempts as counter-arguments), however the logic is still sound. It is also arguably a better way on improving the environmental impact, however I believe the debate on that is still open.

I also wanted to clarify to you that (probably) most vegans believe in the right of self-defense, (obviously, but just in case), which means that if you’re attacked by an animal you have the right of protecting your life, something completely different from mass-exploitation & killing of sentient beings, so that you can go to the grocery store and buy their flesh for its taste. You’ll also agree, or let's hope, that slicing a carrot is more ethical than torturing and slicing a chicken’s throat while conscious, as a simple example.

So, to answer your specific comments, the first ones about the “farms” & “taking a life” should be covered by the above. Next, you go into “emotion vs critical thinking”, I think you’ve misinterpreted their argument from the start, clearly. Next, is the one where you say that vegans will have no answer for what you’ve said… and, yes they do. I don’t know who you’ve talked with about this or where do you get this idea of them “getting the feels”, (as you’ve said), but if you get into an actual serious debate with those arguments, you’ll have a very, very hard time. There is a great amount of information & conversations on the topic, I’ll suggest you to check those out before involving yourself in such topic, because other people have used variations of your ideas and far more complex ones, and it didn’t go as well as they thought.

[I also don't care what you or anyone eats, and won't involve myself with it, this is just an answer to your comments]

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This is all well understood, but the point I'd like to make is, the criteria that vegans seem to use is "sentience." But why exactly is it okay to take a life that isn't sentient, but it's not okay to take one that is?

A sentient life has a chance to defend itself and fight back. Non-sentient life forms cannot defend themselves. If we're talking in terms of morality (it's not right to take sentient life because it's AWARE that its life is being taken), I'd counter-argue that it's actually worse to take the life of something that cannot have even a dismal chance of escape or self-defense. Cutting down a field of live plants that can't get away, vs. hunting for food.

Of course, the mass production of animals exclusively for slaughter can also counter that argument, but the underlying question remains: who is making these rules as to what is and isn't okay to "kill" for other life to continue to exist? Seems like some kind of ethereal guidebook on morality exists somewhere in people's minds but actually doesn't have any basis in logic.

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2 hours ago, Phil said:

This is all well understood, but the point I'd like to make is, the criteria that vegans seem to use is "sentience." But why exactly is it okay to take a life that isn't sentient, but it's not okay to take one that is?

A sentient life has a chance to defend itself and fight back. Non-sentient life forms cannot defend themselves. If we're talking in terms of morality (it's not right to take sentient life because it's AWARE that its life is being taken), I'd counter-argue that it's actually worse to take the life of something that cannot have even a dismal chance of escape or self-defense. Cutting down a field of live plants that can't get away, vs. hunting for food.

Of course, the mass production of animals exclusively for slaughter can also counter that argument, but the underlying question remains: who is making these rules as to what is and isn't okay to "kill" for other life to continue to exist? Seems like some kind of ethereal guidebook on morality exists somewhere in people's minds but actually doesn't have any basis in logic.

Couldn't you ask that question about all morals though? There are no morals purely based in nature, its something humans come up with for a variety of reasons. My point being that you can find a way to justify anything if your logic boils down to "who decided it was wrong?".

Take cannibalism for example. Provided you avoid the brain and cook the meat, there's very little biological risk to cannibalism for modern humans. Maybe its our empathy that makes it wrong....but that falls apart when you realize certain cultures practiced cannibalism for thousands of years and there is no reason to believe they are less empathetic than us. Someone could actually make the argument that eating the dead is *morally* good because its less wasteful than a burial or cremation, but I don't think you or me are going to chomp down on a human burger after this. However our aversion to cannibalism is largely cultural rather than some kind of natural law. (see: exists in peoples minds)

That's why I don't like appeals to "its not based in logic!!". We're fundamentally illogical beings in the sense that we can make choices that are not inherently utilitarian....and in my opinion, that's a good thing. It allows us to examine the world around us and ponder the consequences of our actions. Animals operate on hard logic alone, not humans.

Edited by JeffBezosRightNut

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7 hours ago, Phil said:

This is all well understood, but the point I'd like to make is, the criteria that vegans seem to use is "sentience." But why exactly is it okay to take a life that isn't sentient, but it's not okay to take one that is?

A sentient life has a chance to defend itself and fight back. Non-sentient life forms cannot defend themselves. If we're talking in terms of morality (it's not right to take sentient life because it's AWARE that its life is being taken), I'd counter-argue that it's actually worse to take the life of something that cannot have even a dismal chance of escape or self-defense. Cutting down a field of live plants that can't get away, vs. hunting for food.

Of course, the mass production of animals exclusively for slaughter can also counter that argument, but the underlying question remains: who is making these rules as to what is and isn't okay to "kill" for other life to continue to exist? Seems like some kind of ethereal guidebook on morality exists somewhere in people's minds but actually doesn't have any basis in logic.

This is because sentience is the trait that seems to be logical when deciding what products to choose for eating, and this is not arbitrary, because sentience grants the creature of subjective experience. It has the capability of having a conscious interest in its own life, and in pretty much all cases in the context of factory farming, these animals have also organs that allow them to feel physical & psychological stress/suffering/pain, thought, emotions, and desires, like to live, therefore choosing to torture/kill these creatures when needless would be considered unethical, (you can go into moral relativism for a counter-argument, but it won’t end good).

Plants however, despite being a product of evolution like animals, (which means that they’re “equipped” as best as possible in order to survive and pass on its genetic code), do not have these traits, not one from the previously mentioned. In my first comment I also touched on the subject that plants do react to certain stimuli, but again, this is not sentience. In simpler words, the amount of suffering you cause by slicing the flesh of a sentient being is considerably greater than slicing a vegetable, which is negligent as they don't have complex nervous systems, (of course the argument extends itself to more than just killing).

Factory farmed animals have virtually no chance of defending themselves, I don’t know if you’ve seen how your average slaughter house looks like from inside, so I can give you one of the many examples: Cows being forcefully breed, then sent to these slaughterhouses to be fed for mass-production, then immobilized to have their thoats cut open. This is not an appeal to emotion, it’s a rough description on how it usually is, there is no chance for these animals to escape or defend themselves. And this is just a case with the cows, you should look into chicks going straight up to a giant blender and being minced up alive, then consider if they have a chance to fight back. You also have to take into consideration that plants are used as well to feed these animals in factory farming, but that’s other argument, tangential to the main one.

It is for these reasons that vegans choose to go for non-animal products in order to be as ethical as one can be in a civilised society when it comes to food choices, (but also clothing/other; E.g: Fur is not vegan), and when it's needless, (as you're not in the middle of the savannah struggling for survival & something to eat).

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the reason for the thread:

 

I better not comment on it. But it reminds me on those Corona takes.

Spoiler

What I say is that the reasoning is really, really dumb. Comparing plants to animals. For real? How do you even come to that conclusion?

 

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1 hour ago, babymngaming456 said:

I better not comment on it. But it reminds me on those Corona takes.

I saw it live but thanks for adding context for those who don't know.

I really wanted to elaborate on how plenty of plants have changed over time to defend themselves but not all of them and why pretty much every other person can differentiate between plant and animal but its not worth the effort. I honestly don't know if its better or worse than the Corona takes.

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