Regarding veganism

54 réponses [Dernière contribution]
onpon4
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 05/30/2012

I don't want to contribute anything further to the thread this came out of (because it's turned out to be a far more important issue that I can't help with), but I had the urge to respond to some comments by Legimet.

> We can survive entirely on a plant-based diet, and it causes less harm both to animals and to the environment to consume plants rather than animals.

Firstly, please note that veganism is opposed to the consumption of any animal products. This is not only meat. It also includes dairy, eggs, and anything else that comes from an animal. The consumption of eggs, in particular, does no harm whatsoever to the animals they come from; the chicken eggs we eat are unfertilized eggs. They would mere waste if we did not eat them. Also consider wool, which I would imagine many vegans probably fail to consider in their lifestyles, but it, too, is an animal product, and shearing sheep does not do any harm to them. I don't know what I would do without wool socks; I have Reynaud's disease and need to keep my toes very warm in the winter and even in the fall and spring. Cotton alone just isn't up to the task.

Secondly, plants are not completely innocent when it comes to the environment. Many "staple" crops have a tendency to deplete nutrients from the soil they're grown in. We have two ways of compensating for this: artificial fertilizers, which has to be mined and there is only a limited supply of, and feces, which most usually comes from farm animals such as cattle. Yes, farm animals produce methane. So do we. But I'm not aware of any research showing that animal methane production has increased, or that ceasing animal farming would have any real impact on climate change.

Third, the fact that we can survive on only plants does not imply that we should subsist on only animal products, or that we can all be healthy without animal products.

> If the demand goes down, the number of animals killed will go down. By going vegan, you can decrease the demand for meat thus decreasing the number of animals killed.

Modern farm animals cannot survive in the wild. They are bred for size and docility. If they are not raised to be slaughtered for meat, they simply will be abandoned, die, and go extinct, because they are not fit for survival.

Additionally, there is no basis to suggest that just because humans are not killing animals, less animals will be killed. Nature is not that simple. Ecosystems depend on a balance between plants, herbivores, and carnivores. If herbivores become too prolific, carnivores will also increase in numbers and kill more of them.

If that doesn't happen, e.g. because the species in question is an invasive species, then the number of plants killed (because plants are living things, too; vegans tend to forget that inconvenient fact) will shoot through the roof and plant species may even go extinct. A local example here in Michigan (and other parts of America) is the emerald ash borer, which is responsible for destroying ash tree populations wherever it goes. So this is a further point: it is not necessarily a good thing for less animals to die. It depends on the perspective you look at it from.

This is the perspective I look at it from: the human body did not evolve to eat only plants. It evolved to eat a diet containing a good amount of meat, some seeds, some nuts, some leafy vegetables, and the occasional fruit. Yes, it's possible to eat properly with plant substitutes. But it is hard, and it is unnecessary. It is unreasonable to expect everyone to eat right on a vegan diet, and there is nothing wrong with just eating a balenced diet of meat and vegetables with a little fruit. There are problems with the meat industry, such as the use of antibiotics and inhumane living conditions for the animals, but these problems can be worked out without ending all consumption of meat.

calher

I am a member!

Hors ligne
A rejoint: 06/19/2015

> The consumption of eggs, in particular, does no harm whatsoever to
> the animals they come from; the chicken eggs we eat are unfertilized
> eggs. They would mere waste if we did not eat them.

Unfertilized eggs are eaten to replenish lost calcium.

We have bred them to lay lots of eggs, not to be healthy. They lose
so much calcium that their legs snap under the weight of their bodies.

> Also consider wool, which I would imagine many vegans probably fail
> to consider in their lifestyles, but it, too, is an animal product,
> and shearing sheep does not do any harm to them.

I have not used wool before. I have no need to evaluate it. However,
I have seen footage to the contrary, and any industry that treats
animals as property and has production quotas is bound to harm the
subjects in the process.

> Secondly, plants are not completely innocent when it comes to the
> environment. Many "staple" crops have a tendency to deplete
> nutrients from the soil they're grown in. We have two ways of
> compensating for this: artificial fertilizers, which has to be mined
> and there is only a limited supply of, and feces, which most usually
> comes from farm animals such as cattle.

Sweden has compost toilets on the sides of highways. Japan has also
used humanure.

> Third, the fact that we can survive on only plants does not imply
> that we should subsist on only animal products, or that we can all
> be healthy without animal products.

International consensus on nutrition science says vegan diets are
suitable for all people at any stage of life.

> Modern farm animals cannot survive in the wild. They are bred for size
> and docility. If they are not raised to be slaughtered for meat, they
> simply will be abandoned, die, and go extinct, because they are not
> fit for survival.

We bred a whole race into lives of misery, where their bodies work
against them for their entire lives. It is our duty to stop doing
that.

In the same way we do not abandon dogs or release them into the wild,
so too shall we treat other domestic animals.

> Additionally, there is no basis to suggest that just because humans
> are not killing animals, less animals will be killed. Nature is not
> that simple. Ecosystems depend on a balance between plants,
> herbivores, and carnivores. If herbivores become too prolific,
> carnivores will also increase in numbers and kill more of them.

Anything humans do is imbalanced with nature. Omnivorism by necessity
kills more plants, which in turn accidentally kills more animals.
Veganism kills less plants, which kills less of the animals that are
accidentally killed.

> This is the perspective I look at it from: the human body did not
> evolve to eat only plants.

Appeal to nature.

> It evolved to eat a diet containing a good amount of meat, some
> seeds, some nuts, some leafy vegetables, and the occasional fruit.

Neanderthals and early humans grain with that. Cut the Paleo crap.

> Yes, it's possible to eat properly with plant substitutes. But it is
> hard, and it is unnecessary. It is unreasonable to expect everyone
> to eat right on a vegan diet,

It's not hard. Eat the universal meal: beans and rice.

> and there is nothing wrong with just eating a balenced diet of meat
> and vegetables with a little fruit.

That is not a balanced diet. Balanced diets include whole grains and
legumes. See any sane nutrition guide. Harvard, Cornell, NHS, USDA,
Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, and many other large nutritional
authorities stress the importance of beans and whole grains.

Cut the Paleo crap.

onpon4
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 05/30/2012

> any industry that treats
> animals as property and has production quotas is bound to harm the
> subjects in the process.

Dogs are basically treated as property, but because they're domestic animals, they cannot live good lives without humans. Dogs without human owners are forced to roam the streets looking for scraps to survive. It's a horrible thing for them to be condemned to.

I don't know much about sheep in particular, but I say this to point out that it's not ownership of animals that's the problem. It's industry. And any such problem (which you haven't indicated knowledge of, by the way, only speculation) can be solved via industrial regulation.

> International consensus on nutrition science says vegan diets are
> suitable for all people at any stage of life.
...
> Neanderthals and early humans grain with that. Cut the Paleo crap.
...
> That is not a balanced diet. Balanced diets include whole grains and
> legumes. See any sane nutrition guide. Harvard, Cornell, NHS, USDA,
> Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, and many other large nutritional
> authorities stress the importance of beans and whole grains.

There is no evidence behind the claims of these authority organizations that "whole grains" (which are all very high-carb, low-fiber, low-nutrient foods) are an essential or even good part of our diet. The "food pyramid" you were taught in school was more or less an industry buyout.

No, Neanderthals did not eat "whole grains" (cereal crops, such as wheat, barley, and corn). These crops were first consumed in the neolithic, long after the extinction of homo neanderthalis, not because of nutrition, but because of energy density (it allowed more people to be fed more efficiently). They have never in history been consumed by hunter-gatherer tribes because they can't be harvested the way we do today in the wild.

Consumption of cereal grains is acceptable in moderate quantities. Anything is acceptable in moderation. But our bodies are not adapted to eating only grass. You need other, more nutrient-dense vegetables, fruits, occasional nuts/seeds/legumes, and of course, meat.

As for your demand to "cut the paleo crap", I'm not a paleo dieter. There is nothing wrong with things being artificial or non-traditional per se. Some of the Atkins stuff which I eat is partially made with wheat products, and cheese (which I love) is certainly not "paleo" (dairy came about from farming too). There's also nothing wrong with junk food (which high-carb, low-fiber foods such as bread and pasta are) in moderation.

> It's not hard. Eat the universal meal: beans and rice.

That is not sufficient nutrition. The rice only provides excess carbs (rice is a very low-nutrient, low-fiber food), and you're missing all kinds of essential vitamins and minerals. It's also not a sufficient source of protein; there are several different proteins and beans only provide some of them.

Also, beans and rice is super bland. Who would want to eat that every single day?

Legimet
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 12/10/2013

"Firstly, please note that veganism is opposed to the consumption of any animal products. This is not only meat. It also includes dairy, eggs, and anything else that comes from an animal. The consumption of eggs, in particular, does no harm whatsoever to the animals they come from; the chicken eggs we eat are unfertilized eggs. They would mere waste if we did not eat them. Also consider wool, which I would imagine many vegans probably fail to consider in their lifestyles, but it, too, is an animal product, and shearing sheep does not do any harm to them. I don't know what I would do without wool socks; I have Reynaud's disease and need to keep my toes very warm in the winter and even in the fall and spring. Cotton alone just isn't up to the task."

Yes, I am aware that vegans don't consume animal products, since I myself am not a vegan. You are very mistaken about egg and wool production. I don't have time to write a long reply, but look up chick culling and mulesing. And also, these animals have been bred by us to produce amounts of [whatever we steal from them] that are very harmful to their bodies.

"many vegans probably fail to consider in their lifestyles"
No, I don't fail to consider this. I avoid wool, leather, etc.

"Dogs are basically treated as property, but because they're domestic animals, they cannot live good lives without humans. Dogs without human owners are forced to roam the streets looking for scraps to survive. It's a horrible thing for them to be condemned to."

Forgetting the ownership issue for a moment, why are dogs treated so well (relatively speaking), while pigs are tortured and abuse? What is the difference?

Do you think it would have been acceptable if slavery had continued, as long as the slaves were treated "humanely"? Or do you think it is fundamentally wrong to own other human beings? Just so you can see where we vegans are coming from.

"Consumption of cereal grains is acceptable in moderate quantities. Anything is acceptable in moderation. But our bodies are not adapted to eating only grass. You need other, more nutrient-dense vegetables, fruits, occasional nuts/seeds/legumes, and of course, meat."

No, you don't need meat. This is the consensus. If you want to argue against this consensus, you will need solid evidence backing your claims.

"That is not sufficient nutrition. The rice only provides excess carbs (rice is a very low-nutrient, low-fiber food), and you're missing all kinds of essential vitamins and minerals. It's also not a sufficient source of protein; there are several different proteins and beans only provide some of them."

That's why you add vegetables and spices, for example. Most Americans don't know how to cook good vegan food, which is probably why you think vegan food is bland. I don't know if you have ever been to India, for example, but a lot of Indian food is either vegan or easily veganizable. And in my experience, people find it very tasty.

onpon4
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 05/30/2012

> look up chick culling and mulesing.

Alright, Wikipedia says:

"Chick culling is the process of killing newly hatched poultry for which the industry has no use."

"Mulesing is the removal of strips of wool-bearing skin from around the breech (buttocks) of a sheep to prevent flystrike (myiasis)."

I understand why you're opposed to chick culling, but you have to understand that unless you're opening up a chicken adoption program, there's no real alternative.

As for mulesing, that sounds to me like a good thing. All the alternatives available are either cruel (i.e. just letting natural selection take its course), unrealistic (i.e. depending on crontrolling the blowfly population), or require active maintenance. I could get on board with requiring anaesthetic to be administered when the procedure is performed (unless that would make the procedure more dangerous), but I see no reasonable basis for opposing the practice entirely.

> why are dogs treated so well (relatively speaking), while pigs are tortured and abuse? What is the difference?

Pigs are tortured? That's news to me. I know factory farms keep animals in lousy conditions, but that is not by the very nature of animal farming, it's just an industry problem that could be solved with industrial regulation.

If you're referring to the slaughtering, well, we do kill (euthanize) our dogs, because killing a dog that's suffering from serious illness is kinder than keeping it alive so that it can keep suffering. The only difference is when and why we kill them. The fact that we kill pigs does not necessitate that they have a bad quality of life, let alone that they are "tortured and abuse (sic)".

> Do you think it would have been acceptable if slavery had continued, as long as the slaves were treated "humanely"?

No, because they're human. That's the difference.

> Just so you can see where we vegans are coming from.

I already know where you're coming from.

So tell me, please: why is it OK to kill root vegetables to eat them? Why is it OK to breed plants so that they mature ridiculously fast, and kill them every year after the harvest?

> No, you don't need meat. This is the consensus. If you want to argue against this consensus, you will need solid evidence backing your claims.

Two things:

1. This isn't a coherent response to what I said. I didn't say that you must eat meat to be healthy. I said that's the easiest way.
2. If you're going to use an appeal to authority, you have to at least name what authority you're talking about. The consensus of...? You and your vegan friends? The Sentinelese? The Kims?

> That's why you add vegetables and spices, for example.

So you admit that the claim that being healthy as a vegan only involves eating beans and rice is false?

> Most Americans don't know how to cook good vegan food, which is probably why you think vegan food is bland.

I didn't say that "vegan food is bland". I said that about "the universal meal: beans and rice".

Legimet
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 12/10/2013

"As for mulesing, that sounds to me like a good thing. All the alternatives available are either cruel (i.e. just letting natural selection take its course), unrealistic (i.e. depending on crontrolling the blowfly population), or require active maintenance. I could get on board with requiring anaesthetic to be administered when the procedure is performed (unless that would make the procedure more dangerous), but I see no reasonable basis for opposing the practice entirely."

We bred sheep to have way more wool than they can handle. The alternative would be to stop breeding these varieties of sheep and let them die out of old age.

"No, because they're human. That's the difference."

"No, because they're white. That's the difference." What is the difference between this reasoning and yours? Why is species a barrier for moral consideration? It is very arbitrary, just as it would be if you only gave moral consideration to white people, straight people, people of your religion, etc. Vegans draw the line at sentience, and animals are sentient (OK, not some animals like sponges, but you know what I mean).

"I understand why you're opposed to chick culling, but you have to understand that unless you're opening up a chicken adoption program, there's no real alternative."

The alternative is not breeding and killing animals. We don't have to eat eggs.

" 2. If you're going to use an appeal to authority, you have to at least name what authority you're talking about. The consensus of...? You and your vegan friends? The Sentinelese? The Kims?"

The Sentinelese? They eat meat, I don't know what you are talking about. The Kims? Who are those? Kim Kardashian? Kim Jong Un? All of them eat meat as far as I know. This is not a coherent response. Calher already pointed to numerous dietetic organizations saying that you can get all the nutrients you need by eating a plant-based diet. I would trust them any day over some random person on the Internet.

"So you admit that the claim that being healthy as a vegan only involves eating beans and rice is false?"

I never said eating only rice and beans is a balanced meal. Those two things, however, will provide enough protein. Just as a meat eater would, though, you will need nutrients from vegetables and stuff.

"So tell me, please: why is it OK to kill root vegetables to eat them? Why is it OK to breed plants so that they mature ridiculously fast, and kill them every year after the harvest?"

We draw the line at sentience. There is no evidence that vegetables are sentient. They can respond to stimuli, but they don't have a nervous system.

"Pigs are tortured? That's news to me. I know factory farms keep animals in lousy conditions, but that is not by the very nature of animal farming, it's just an industry problem that could be solved with industrial regulation."

Gestation crates, for example.

"The only difference is when and why we kill them"

My question is, why do we in the western world treat dogs like family and eat pigs? Many Americans are outraged at people in other countries eating dogs.

By the way, I hope we can keep this debate civil. I don't want to get into a flame war.

calher

I am a member!

Hors ligne
A rejoint: 06/19/2015

For the rocerd, I referred to the universal MEAL beans and rice, not plain beans and plain rice slapped on a plate. Nobody eats just plain beans and rice. If you tell people to eat beans and rice, they'll always add other stuff to it.

Legimet
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 12/10/2013

Yeah, I understood what you were saying. I will say that eating a balanced, healthy diet takes time and effort, whether you're a vegan or not. Which is why most people have horrible diets. But apparently people have a stronger reaction if you're a vegan on an unhealthy diet than if you're a meat eater on an unhealthy diet.

onpon4
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 05/30/2012

> that you can get all the nutrients you need by eating a plant-based diet.

That's not a claim I disputed.

> We draw the line at sentience.

Why?

> Gestation crates, for example.

That's not torture. That's one of those industrial practices I mentioned, and it can be fixed with industrial regulation (e.g. requiring a certain amount of space for each pig).

> why do we in the western world treat dogs like family and eat pigs?

Because we bred dogs to be service animals and pigs to be food.

Legimet
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 12/10/2013

I don't have any more time to respond to this today, but you did say that meat is a necessary component of a balanced diet:
"You *need* other, more nutrient-dense vegetables, fruits, occasional nuts/seeds/legumes, *and of course, meat.**

Confining pregnant pigs in a space where they can barely move isn't torture? I wonder what your definition of torture is.
torture - inflict severe pain on

I will address your other questions some other time.

onpon4
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 05/30/2012

> I wonder what your definition of torture is.

"the infliction of intense pain (as from burning, crushing, or wounding) to punish, coerce, or afford sadistic pleasure"

Source: https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/torture

fbit

I am a member!

Hors ligne
A rejoint: 07/07/2013

>Confining pregnant pigs in a space where they can barely
>move isn't torture? I wonder what your definition of torture
>is.

It is not torture, it is "enhanced husbandry."^1

^1 Coming soon to your nearest dictionary.

Joking aside, I find the industrial "manufacturing" of animals is very cruel and abhorrent, it really doesn't matter if you want to call it torture or not. I am sure future generations will look back on this practice in a very negative light. That said, I do eat industrially "manufactured" animals and their products.

Likewise, for example, the paper industry (including toilet paper) is responsible for vast amounts of destruction by turning previously forested land into monoculture plantations of eucaliptus and the like. This destroys all natural habitat as well as the soil and it dries up the water table. There are countless examples of terrible things humanity is doing. According to many scientists we have entered the sixth earth mass extinction. It is only a personal opinion, but if we focus on them all it is no longer possible to live life.

FindEssential
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 08/23/2017

Ok, I'll try to my best to respond to your statement as directly as possible:

Eggs, Wool, and a like:

Vegans see domestication of animals itself as an unnecessary historical remnant that in and of itself is both cruel and unnecessary. In a vegan world there would be no domesticated animals. In fact, there is a good deal of writing about how to treat animals humanly while allowing their population to drop to zero, it is called the sanctuary movement. Most vegans are not going to quibble with you over eggs or honey, or anything else for this reason. Its why you don't get a response you find satisfactory. In fact, this seems to be the point that you miss in most of your statements. Its certainly a common missed thread for sure.

I am not personally vegan, but rather a strict vegetarian, but as such my diet is indistinguishable from a vegans to most outside observation. Millions of people live long and healthy lives without meat the world over. Many more millions do so simply eating significantly less meat than especially those in the west. The reality is that due to our population growth the over all quality of meat available has dropped, as has its suitability as a nutritionally dense food. As more of the developing world is able to afford meat more often this problem will only get worse. It takes a lot of land to raise and feed meat producing animals, much more than just producing well rotated plants. This of course doesn't even touch on the large amount of animal products people eat that are essential garbage food with no positive nutritional value that is driving the obesity crises in several countries.

Can a meat eater just stop eating meat and go plant-based, but otherwise doing exactly what they were doing before with good outcomes? No, certainly not. There are many little things a well versed plant based person will do that people just trying it out may not know. I could probably write a book on those things to be honest.

onpon4
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 05/30/2012

> Vegans see domestication of animals itself as an unnecessary historical remnant that in and of itself is both cruel and unnecessary. In a vegan world there would be no domesticated animals.

I know that. It's total nonsense, though.

You have to compare the ethics of how to treat an animal to the nature of that animal. You could argue that wolves should never have been domesticated and turned into dogs all you want, but the fact of the matter is that they're domesticated already and their nature makes them happier and healthier with us now. Sure, they don't have "freedom", but freedom is a luxury in nature. Worker ants and worker bees don't have freedom, either. They are slaves to their queens and completely disposable.

So as far as domestic farm animals go, their natural life cycle (the one that works for them) is to be raised by humans, then slaughtered for their meat. Yes, it sounds cruel. But all animals die one way or another, and in nature, that death is often being attacked by a predator, brutally killed, and eaten. Or, it can involve being eaten alive. You just can't know. Considering that, I would argue that this predictable process of being raised on a farm and then killed quickly and painlessly is a blessing. They probably wouldn't have lived much longer on average in the wild, anyway.

> This of course doesn't even touch on the large amount of animal products people eat that are essential garbage food with no positive nutritional value that is driving the obesity crises in several countries.

The big driver of obesity is sugar. There is documented evidence that the sugar industry paid a lot of money to spread confusion about the harm to health sugar causes.

Take a look at the processed foods found at your local grocery store. Note the sugar content, and note that the amount of added sugar generally estimated to be acceptable in a healthy diet is about 100 calories, or roughly 25 grams. I guarantee you you will have a lot of difficulty finding any processed food, or any prepared food at all, without sugar added to it, often in insane amounts.

It's not the meat that's the problem. It's the sugar. Sugar, as you know, almost always comes from plants (the only exception is honey, which despite claims to the contrary is just as bad as all the rest).

> The reality is that due to our population growth the over all quality of meat available has dropped, as has its suitability as a nutritionally dense food. As more of the developing world is able to afford meat more often this problem will only get worse. It takes a lot of land to raise and feed meat producing animals, much more than just producing well rotated plants.

I'm all for feeding the hungry, but population growth isn't just going to magically stop if we stop eating meat. As long as the population keeps growing, no matter how efficient we are at growing food, we will end up at the point where we can no longer sustain that population.

The real problem you're alluding to is not a scarcity of food. It's overpopulation. Adding more food to circulation will not curb population growth. Only two things control population growth: birth rates, and death rates. When famines happen, that is nature raising the death rate, and it stabilizes the population. When resources become scarce and we start killing each other over them, that is also nature raising the death rate, and also stabilizes the population. The goal, then, is to stop these things from happening by not raising the death rate, but instead reducing the birth rate. That can be done regardless of how much food can be produced.

> There are many little things a well versed plant based person will do that people just trying it out may not know. I could probably write a book on those things to be honest.

And that's the point, isn't it? Not everyone has the time to be learning all this stuff.

Legimet
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 12/10/2013

"So as far as domestic farm animals go, their natural life cycle (the one that works for them) is to be raised by humans, then slaughtered for their meat. Yes, it sounds cruel. But all animals die one way or another, and in nature, that death is often being attacked by a predator, brutally killed, and eaten. Or, it can involve being eaten alive. You just can't know. Considering that, I would argue that this predictable process of being raised on a farm and then killed quickly and painlessly is a blessing. They probably wouldn't have lived much longer on average in the wild, anyway."

People used to make similar arguments about slavery. That white people were helping Africans by capturing and enslaving them. I'm sure those animals would prefer never being born than being born into the animal agriculture industry.

Imagine if aliens came from another planet and saw us, and decided to breed and eat us. They would say, we are fighting a lot of wars and killing each other, and it is much better for us to be raised on a farm and eaten.

"The big driver of obesity is sugar. There is documented evidence that the sugar industry paid a lot of money to spread confusion about the harm to health sugar causes."

I agree that sugar is unhealthy, but this is not really relevant to the topic.

"And that's the point, isn't it? Not everyone has the time to be learning all this stuff."
Most people should be taking the time to learn about nutrition anyway, whether vegan or not. The Standard American Diet is terrible.

onpon4
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 05/30/2012

> People used to make similar arguments about slavery.

Black people were not bred by white people, and the only reason slavery (per se) is wrong is because they're human.

> I'm sure those animals would prefer never being born than being born into the animal agriculture industry.

You don't know how these animals feel. You're just offering some conjecture, which is a really weak basis to be "sure" of something.

> Imagine if aliens came from another planet and saw us, and decided to breed and eat us.

Then we would probably fight against them. And if we won, we would probably commit genocide against them.

> They would say, we are fighting a lot of wars and killing each other, and it is much better for us to be raised on a farm and eaten.

Humans never needed a justification for domestication of animals such as that. We have always domesticated animals because we wanted to (or, in some cases, because they wanted us to; see domestic cats). So in the hypothetical scenario you describe, these aliens would not offer up excuses, they would just do it because we are not their species and they find us to be tasty.

But we would not be like domestic cattle. We would be like the wild aurochs.

Legimet
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 12/10/2013

"Black people were not bred by white people, and the only reason slavery (per se) is wrong is because they're human."

A racist would say it's OK because they're black, and it is wrong to enslave white people because they're white. This isn't very good reasoning.

"You don't know how these animals feel. You're just offering some conjecture, which is a really weak basis to be "sure" of something."
OK sure, the animals enjoy being killed. I too would enjoy being killed and eaten. Please come and kill and eat me /s

"Humans never needed a justification for domestication of animals such as that. We have always domesticated animals because we wanted to (or, in some cases, because they wanted us to; see domestic cats). So in the hypothetical scenario you describe, these aliens would not offer up excuses, they would just do it because we are not their species and they find us to be tasty."

Wanting to do something is not a good reason for doing it. We are capable of moral reasoning. People wanted to enslave other humans, did that make it OK?

onpon4
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 05/30/2012

> OK sure, the animals enjoy being killed.

There's more to it than just being killed. There's also protection from predators, diseases, and suffering. You can't just boil it down to "killed" and "not killed".

Quick question (unrelated to the previous paragraph): are you opposed to animal testing as well? Just asking because inevitably, you have benefited greatly from this practice. If you are opposed to animal testing, would you propose a ban on clinical studies that require living models, or performing larger numbers of tests on humans instead? Alternatively, if you are not opposed, how do you justify this position as a vegan?

Legimet
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 12/10/2013

"There's more to it than just being killed. There's also protection from predators, diseases, and suffering. You can't just boil it down to "killed" and "not killed"."

The alternative would be for the animals never to be bred into existence in the first place. In this case, there are no predators, disease, and suffering for the animal to worry about (and indeed, a nonexistent animal can't worry about anything).

"Quick question (unrelated to the previous paragraph): are you opposed to animal testing as well? Just asking because inevitably, you have benefited greatly from this practice. If you are opposed to animal testing, would you propose a ban on clinical studies that require living models, or performing larger numbers of tests on humans instead? Alternatively, if you are not opposed, how do you justify this position as a vegan?"

Yes, I am opposed to animal testing. However, I don't think it's really feasible at the moment to end animal testing for pharmaceuticals, because the alternatives aren't yet good enough unfortunately. I do think it should be banned for cosmetics, and aggressive research efforts should be put into finding alternatives that can completely replace animal testing. On the other hand, when it comes to food, we have perfectly good alternatives to animal products.

onpon4
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 05/30/2012

> The alternative would be for the animals never to be bred into existence in the first place.

So, then, are you proposing that life is bad and should end entirely? That is the only logical conclusion I can draw from this statement, as I was arguing that the life of a domestic farm animal can easily be better than the life of a wild animal.

> I do think it should be banned for cosmetics, and aggressive research efforts should be put into finding alternatives that can completely replace animal testing.

For cosmetics, do you propose banning all cosmetics, testing all cosmetics on humans exclusively, or allowing companies to sell untested cosmetics to consumers?

Legimet
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 12/10/2013

"So, then, are you proposing that life is bad and should end entirely? That is the only logical conclusion I can draw from this statement, as I was arguing that the life of a domestic farm animal can easily be better than the life of a wild animal."

It is intellectually dishonest to say that I implied that "life is bad". If we didn't breed domestic animals they wouldn't suddenly become wild animals. The choice is between breeding an animal, and that animal never having existed. Breeding domestic animals doesn't improve the lives of wild animals.

To use another analogy, your logic would imply that since the life of a child in a developed country is better than the life of a child in a third-world country, we should try to have lots of children in a developed country. This doesn't make any sense, having children in a developed country is not helping the children in the third-world country.

"For cosmetics, do you propose banning all cosmetics, testing all cosmetics on humans exclusively, or allowing companies to sell untested cosmetics to consumers?"
I propose banning animal testing for cosmetics. This has already been implemented in the EU, India, and Israel.

onpon4
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 05/30/2012

> It is intellectually dishonest to say that I implied that "life is bad".

I was comparing two things:

1. Wild life (e.g. of an aurochs)
2. Domestic life ending in slaughter (e.g. of cattle)

Your response was to say that the alternative is for cattle to not exist.

> Breeding domestic animals doesn't improve the lives of wild animals.

That's not what I'm talking about. Consider the following scenarios:

1. Animal A is a wild animal which can potentially live for up to two years, but typically dies between the ages of 4-8 months from predators, starvation, or disease.
2. Animal B is a domestic animal which is raised for one year, kept safe from predators and disease and well-fed throughout its entire life, and then slaughtered for its meat at the age of one year.

You are saying that animal A is better off, correct?

I'm saying that animal B is better off.

> I propose banning animal testing for cosmetics.

That wasn't the question. Which alternative do you support? Do you propose banning all cosmetics, testing all cosmetics on humans exclusively, or allowing companies to sell untested cosmetics to consumers?

jorgesumle
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 06/01/2016

> You are saying that animal A is better off, correct?

It's better to be free than in a prison, even if you live a shorter live. You are not given junk food, overcrowded, separated from your family, etc. at the mercy of a species that has made extinct lots of animals, and still thinks it has the legitimacy to destroy its habitat.

> well-fed

I recommend that you watch the film Earthlings (avideo https://youtu.be/BrlBSuuy50Y), you'll see what well-fed means. You can also read some articles and comments from https://raddle.me/f/Vegan

> That wasn't the question. Which alternative do you support? Do you propose banning all cosmetics, testing all cosmetics on humans exclusively, or allowing companies to sell untested cosmetics to consumers?

Humans have used cosmetics for a very long time... Why do you think testing on humans is bad? Maybe you are Speciesist; vegans don't like speciesism. I understand you, but I don't agree with you.

onpon4
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 05/30/2012

> Why do you think testing on humans is bad?

Because if we have not confirmed that the substance doesn't literally burn skin or do other nasty things, it harms people needlessly.

> Maybe you are Speciesist

Of course I am. Different species do have different value. A cockroach is not worth as much as a horse, and a horse is not worth as much as a human.

So yes, the suffering and death of a laboratory mouse is better than the suffering of a human.

Legimet
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 12/10/2013

I don't know why you're so hung up on this point. In the US at least, cosmetics aren't required to be tested on animals, human or non-human. And I am fine with that. There are other regulations, anyway.

And a ban on testing cosmetics on animals has already been implemented in the EU, Israel, and India. They don't seem to have any problems with it.

"Different species do have different value."
You state that as if it's an objective fact. That philosophers continue to argue over suggests that it isn't.

onpon4
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 05/30/2012

Alright, then. So here's my follow-up question: why is it okay for cosmetics to be untested, but not okay for medication to be untested? After all, you did concede that animal testing for medication is a necessary evil until alternatives can be developed.

fbit

I am a member!

Hors ligne
A rejoint: 07/07/2013

>Different species do have different value.

The suffering we inflict on other species is deemed acceptable because they are less valuable?

"Man is not the pedestalled creature pictured by his imagination - a being glittering with prerogatives, and towering apart from and above all other beings. He is a pain-shunning, pleasure-seeking, death-dreading organism, differing in particulars, but not in kind, from the pain-shunning, pleasure-seeking, death-dreading organisms below and around him."
- Moore, J. Howard

>So yes, the suffering and death of a laboratory mouse is
>better than the suffering of a human.

This is a disingenuous response, as he was specifically talking about *cosmetics*, not medical research.

In any case, even if it was about medical research, your sentence is incomplete, the question should be:

Is the purposeful suffering and death of laboratory mice (and other sentient beings) at the hands of researchers justified to potentially discover cures for humans to use?

We are not speaking of a human and another creature, both about to start suffering, and having to choose to save one or the other. We are talking about the premeditated, systematic, abuse and torture of some animals. In the best case scenario, this is done to help to find cures for humans to the suffering and torture we submit them to in the first place, in the worst case scenario (I would think an overhuelming proportion) this is done because we have grown up being taught that this is justified.

Taken to the extreme, imagine if we suddenly discovered that through a procedure that tortures mice (or dogs, or monkeys, or any other animal) to death we can extract a substance that is capable of curing all diseases. Should we then proceed to systematically torture to death all of these living beings for the benefit of sparing humanity of suffering or even death?

My answer would be no, and I think this is closer to the real essence of the ethical conundrum. The way animals are tortured and killed in the name of science is, at least in a majority of cases, abhorrent. Think of all the animals that are tortured and killed in basic high school and university science labs on a daily basis, for absolutely no purpose. This, in my opinion, is proof that the practice itself is a leftover from a different era and that we should be, as informed members of our societies, much more demanding regarding the rights of animals.

There are of course, other cases where it is not so clear cut, but which still give me the chills. Should we inject mice with pesticides to research the health effects of pesticide use on humans? Think about it. We created the pesticides to kill living beings who like to feed on the same things we like to feed, and then we carry out research to figure out whether (as an example) the spike in Parkinsons is correlated to the use of particular pesticides that we subject ourselves and other living beings purposefully to). A different example, of which the cause is at least not clearly human made. Lab mice are injected with melanoma cancer cells so that they develop tumors, so that we can test different compounds on them and see if they have anti-cancer properties, so that we can help humans not suffer from the same effects of the terrible disease we are inflicting on animals.

Every time I read through in vivo medical research I wince and wonder at the wretchedness of it all. To these animals, if they could express themselves in ways that we can understand, all of these scientists must not be dissimilar to how we would perceive of somebody like Josef Mengele. Unfortunately for them, they have so far been unable to make a compassionate enough appeal.

In the case of cosmetics (for the sole purpose of aesthetics) I don't even think it's worth debating. If people want to put shiny shit close to their eyes to try to look more beautiful, they should do the testing on themselves.

---------

I have had thoughts about vegetarianism for a long time. I was at one point vegetarian for a year or so. After reading through this thread, the desire to be vegetarian has been rekindled. So, thanks to all of you for this. To borrow the words of Dr. Albert Schweitzer, "Think occasionally of the suffering of which you spare yourself the sight."

onpon4
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 05/30/2012

> "Man is not the pedestalled creature pictured by his imagination - a being glittering with prerogatives, and towering apart from and above all other beings. He is a pain-shunning, pleasure-seeking, death-dreading organism, differing in particulars, but not in kind, from the pain-shunning, pleasure-seeking, death-dreading organisms below and around him."

Yes, well, the value I'm talking about - valuing humans above other animals - is one of the factors that has aided our success as a species. There doesn't have to be a fundamental truth behind it. Values are subjective.

Remember the alien scenario? Those aliens would value us less than themselves, and they would be right to do so. We would value the aliens less than ourselves, and we would be right to do so. If pigs are intelligent enough to value other pigs more than humans, they are right to do so. Et cetera.

> he was specifically talking about *cosmetics*, not medical research.

Are you implying that ingredients in cosmetics cannot cause suffering? Hundreds of years of people using lead in their makeup would disagree with you.

> Is the purposeful suffering and death of laboratory mice (and other sentient beings) at the hands of researchers justified to potentially discover cures for humans to use?

Yes.

> We are talking about the premeditated, systematic, abuse and torture of some animals.

And it can save human lives.

> Taken to the extreme, imagine if we suddenly discovered that through a procedure that tortures mice (or dogs, or monkeys, or any other animal) to death we can extract a substance that is capable of curing all diseases. Should we then proceed to systematically torture to death all of these living beings for the benefit of sparing humanity of suffering or even death?

That would be an incredible discovery, and I think every scientist in the world would be hard at work trying to find a way to produce the same substance synthetically. It would be an instant path to a Nobel Prize, I think.

> Think of all the animals that are tortured and killed in basic high school and university science labs on a daily basis, for absolutely no purpose.

Are you talking about dissecting frogs? That's the only example I can think of that you might see in a high school, though we didn't do that at my high school.

Dissection is done postmortem. It is not "torture". So if you are referring to some other activity, can you please tell me what it is?

> Should we inject mice with pesticides to research the health effects of pesticide use on humans? Think about it. We created the pesticides to kill living beings who like to feed on the same things we like to feed, and then we carry out research to figure out whether (as an example) the spike in Parkinsons is correlated to the use of particular pesticides that we subject ourselves and other living beings purposefully to).

Sounds good to me. Or do you want to use pesticides that harm humans as much as they harm insects?

> Lab mice are injected with melanoma cancer cells so that they develop tumors, so that we can test different compounds on them and see if they have anti-cancer properties

That sounds good to me.

> To these animals, if they could express themselves in ways that we can understand, all of these scientists must not be dissimilar to how we would perceive of somebody like Josef Mengele.

Mice are not as intelligent as you grant them to be.

> If people want to put shiny shit close to their eyes to try to look more beautiful, they should do the testing on themselves.

I disagree, and I find abhorrent your insistence that women who like to wear makeup, and actors who have to wear makeup to do their jobs, should just be given untested, possibly dangerous products and left to deal with the consequences, because you don't want to hurt a few laboratory mice.

Legimet
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 12/10/2013

So this is the crux of the issue. You think that it is OK to do anything if it benefits yourself, while I generally try to consider the impacts on others, however "different" or far-removed they are from myself. We just have fundamentally different values, I guess.

onpon4
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 05/30/2012

Not myself, humanity. That's an important distinction. Selfishness has no place in humans; we survive by forming cooperative groups with other humans. However, selflessness does not extend to other species. I want what's best for humans regardless of how it impacts other living organisms.

Legimet
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 12/10/2013

This is the same attitude that fuels tribalism. Replace "my species" with "my race" and it is the same argument that a racist would make.

onpon4
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A rejoint: 05/30/2012

We can interbreed with other humans with different skin colors. We cannot interbreed with cattle. We are different species.

Tell me something: how do you feel about protecting lions? Lions hunt and kill other animals. By protecting lions, are we not ensuring the painful death of the animals the lions kill?

strypey
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 05/14/2015

>> We can interbreed with other humans with different skin colors. We cannot interbreed with cattle. We are different species. <<

No one is disputing this. What we are disputing is whether a person should be exempt from moral concern because they are a member of a species other than human. Your argument seems to boil down to; they're not like us so it's ok. This is the core argument of racists, sexists, and all bigots.

>> Tell me something: how do you feel about protecting lions? Lions hunt and kill other animals. By protecting lions, are we not ensuring the painful death of the animals the lions kill? <<

Lions don't have any choice. For one thing, they are carnivores, not omnivores. Their physiology cannot cope with any diet but meat. Also, as far as we can tell, they do not have the capability to think about the consequences of their actions on others, and choose a different diet. Your argument seems to be that because it's ok for lions to kill and eat other creatures, it's also ok for humans. Some non-humans routinely rape other members of their species. Does that mean that's ok for humans to do to?

onpon4
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 05/30/2012

> Lions don't have any choice.

But we do. We could allow carnivores to go extinct, transport herbivores to places where they are invasive species (and therefore have no predators), etc. By protecting lions, you are directly contributing to the death of their prey. Carnivores eat large numbers of their prey, so the death of one carnivore will save dozens, if not hundreds of herbivore lives. Why are you not in favor of allowing this to happen, if you find it acceptable to allow the killing to happen?

Of course, if you know anything about ecosystems, then you know that predation is essential to the health of the ecosystem. Without predators, plants die, food runs out, and the herbivores eventually die off as well, but not before making several plant species go extinct. So I'm not in favor of disrupting this essential life cycle for half-baked morality concerns about animals dying or suffering. But you should be. It's the only way I can see for you to be logically consistent.

fbit

I am a member!

Hors ligne
A rejoint: 07/07/2013

I agree. Fundamentally different values. I think onpon4 and I can agree to disagree on this issue.

onpon4
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 05/30/2012

I want to clarify just one thing:

I do not refuse compassion to non-human animals. In fact, I've said many times in the past how much I love certain animals, like spiders, cats, dogs, house centipedes, wasps, dragonflies, bats, snakes, etc. And when I ride my bike on the road, it pains me to see the corpses of raccoons, frogs, birds, chipmunks, deer, and even skunks that have been killed by cars running over them (which is very common, especially birds and raccoons). But there's a reason we don't hold news stories about these animals that get killed: they're not people. They are not as important as people. It's better for them to die than for a person to die. That's why a major rule of driving is: never risk a collision to avoid a small animal. If you have to choose between that risk and just running straight over the animal, choose the latter.

Also, I am not in favor of needless suffering of laboratory mice. There has to be a good reason for it. An old friend of my mom used to have a pet rat, and he was very sweet and adorable. I just might get a pet rat one day, and no, I won't be performing tests on any future pet rat I may have; I'm not a monster. However, I recognize that animal testing for safety is far better than human testing for safety, and some sort of safety test is needed for novel substances. Therefore, testing on laboratory mice (or other small mammals) is the moral thing to do, until it has been properly established that they don't cause serious harm.

fbit

I am a member!

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A rejoint: 07/07/2013

>Yes, well, the value I'm talking about - valuing humans above other animals - is one of the factors that has aided our success as a species.

Perhaps what you see as our success I see as our downfall. The shortsightedness to squander non-renewable resources and treat the world as our property will come back to haunt future generations, in my opinion.

>Are you implying that ingredients in cosmetics cannot cause suffering? Hundreds of years of people using lead in their makeup would disagree with you.

I'm implying the desire to look more beautiful does not justify torturing and killing animals, whether or not other more important issues do.

>Are you talking about dissecting frogs? That's the only example I can think of that you might see in a high school, though we didn't do that at my high school.

Frogs in highschool, lab mice and possibly other animals in university. Frogs are dissected while alive to watch the heart beating, for example. The heart can be removed and made to beat, though I forget the exact procedure. Example: learning about the anatomy of the brain by opening the skull of an anesthesized lab rat and killing certain areas of the brain, stitching the head up and waiting for the rat to wake up to see the response in the rat. I'm sure your search engine can be more helpful than I can be for examples. This particular one I was made to do in a lab in university.

>Sounds good to me. Or do you want to use pesticides that harm humans as much as they harm insects?

I propose we should look for ways to be less destructive to the world and the other life forms in it. Regardless of ethical issues, if we do not, we will pay the consequences of our short sightedness.

>That sounds good to me.

Nothing to say if you have no empathy for the suffering of other sentient beings.

>Mice are not as intelligent as you grant them to be.
Animals don't need to be very intelligent to suffer. Mice have the capacity to suffer, to experience pain and fear.

>I disagree, and I find abhorrent your insistence that women who like to wear makeup, and actors who have to wear makeup to do their jobs, should just be given untested, possibly dangerous products and left to deal with the consequences, because you don't want to hurt a few laboratory mice.

I suppose we have incompatible values. What I find abhorrent you are happy about. Why would anyone want to hurt other animals for their own perceived beauty and how can that be considered ethical?

Legimet
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 12/10/2013

I agree. I find it abhorrent to test something unnecessary like cosmetics on animals. And I suppose that my view on this particular issue isn't limited to vegans, considering several countries, and the EU, have banned animal testing on cosmetics for animal welfare reasons.

onpon4
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 05/30/2012

> the desire to look more beautiful does not justify torturing and killing animals

You are completely avoiding the real issue: that the test is for safety, not "the desire to look more beautiful". The "torture", as you call it (which is an exaggeration that you insist on), is to make sure the substance doesn't cause harmful effects.

If it didn't have harmful effects, it wouldn't be "torture" for the mice it is tested on. So if they are harmed, the purpose of testing is to stop people from using it.

When you ban animal testing for cosmetics, if any new substance is found to be useful for cosmetics, it can go into the market untested. Then, people who want to use cosmetics can be punished for daring to like cosmetics, because it turns out that this substance actually causes skin cancer. This is a horrendous outcome that could have been avoided if tests of safety for the substance had just been performed on mice before it was allowed to enter the market. So tell me: do you want to harm people for the crime of wanting to wear cosmetics? Because that is what you implicitly support by supporting the state of affairs where cosmetics can go into the market untested, or even worse, where cosmetics are not even allowed to be tested properly.

This might not even by hypothetical. Talc, which is known to cause ovarian and lung cancer, is used in all kinds of of cosmetics. I've noticed that it's even used in a lot of women's deodorant; I've switched to a different brand because it was recently introduced to the brand I had used before. We really don't know what kind of effect this use of talc is having on innocent women's health; perhaps it's safe, but perhaps it isn't. Wouldn't it be nice for companies to have to show the safety of this application with tests on animals rather than putting innocent women at risk? I certainly think so. If the cosmetics and other products using talc are shown to be safe on mice, the mice will be fine and we can go on allowing them to be used. But if the mice turn out to develop cancer, while they won't be fine, it will stop millions of humans from using them and suffering the consequences.

But you see this as, "mice may suffer from these tests, so we shouldn't do them". In other words, you presuppose that the mice will suffer from adverse outcomes, and yet also say that humans should be allowed to be subject to them. Because they want to use cosmetics.

Don't you see any problem with that?

> Example: learning about the anatomy of the brain by opening the skull of an anesthesized lab rat and killing certain areas of the brain, stitching the head up and waiting for the rat to wake up to see the response in the rat.

"Anesthesized"? As in, on painkillers? So, it's done in a way that avoids causing suffering?

I'm not in favor of these kinds of experiments in high school, but in certain college classes, they might be essential.

strypey
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 05/14/2015

>> You are completely avoiding the real issue: that the test is for safety. <<

Then non-humans are a poor choice of test subject. Non-humans have significantly different physiology to humans, and can respond very differently to the same chemicals. Chocolate can kill dogs. Aspirin poisons cats. Remember thalidomide? Extensively tested on animals, presumed to be safe. The rest is history. Testing human products on non-humans is scientifically invalid, and adds both unnecessary suffering and unnecessary expense to the process of product development.

The only effective way to test the safety of new products is to trial them on a small number of human *volunteers*, in very small quantities, beginning with patch testing on skin. If there is no painful reaction, then you try placing it on the tongue and then spitting it out, and then holding it in the mouth for longer. If no harmful reactions are observed, ingestions tests can proceed, again in very small amounts, with careful monitoring, and a stomach pump standing by.

Product testing (whether cosmetic or medical) only ever lasts a few months or at most a few years, and is useless for determining whether the product causes or exacerbates chronic illnesses like cancer or Parkinsons. The only way to do that is long-term monitoring of human users, with sufficiently large and random sample groups. A lot more human suffering would be avoided if the money spent doing pointless LD50 poisoning tests on rats and rabbits was spent on these kinds of long-term studies, and many years worth of such studies could be funded with the money spent on 1 year of vivisection.

>> you presuppose that the mice will suffer from adverse outcomes, and yet also say that humans should be allowed to be subject to them. Because they want to use cosmetics. <<

There are adults in special care facilities who have a mental age of about 2. Since they are and will always be less sentient than an adult human, and probably less so than an adult mouse, it would be ok to safety test medicines on these people, would it not? If not, why not?

>> "Anesthesized"? As in, on painkillers? So, it's done in a way that avoids causing suffering? <<

I presume this part of the discussion is referring to the "pure research" that involves acts of totally unnecessary torture like opening up the chests of live monkeys while they watch in terror (anaesthetized or not), or letting cats wander around with devices directly wired into their brains. For examples, see the documentary 'Earthlings', or: https://emptyallcages.com/tag/monkeys/

Nothing in any Hollywood horror movie compares to the real world horror of what some humans have done to non-humans in the name of "science". If we are ever discovered by a species that is as technologically developed and powerful compared to us as we are to those moneys, all I can say is that I hope they are also more ethically advanced than us to the same degree.

All the vegans I know are opposed to the use of non-humans in any product testing and medical experiments, for reasons explained here:
http://www.nzavs.org.nz/

In recent decades, confinement and experimentation on other great ape species has been banned in many countries, as they are too much like us, their sentience and ability to suffer loneliness, fear, and pain are too obvious. I can see this ban eventually being extended to all mammals, then to all creatures with a discernible ability to suffer. Just because we can use non-humans at our convenience, it doesn't mean it's right. Power is not, in itself, justification for its use.

onpon4
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 05/30/2012

> Then non-humans are a poor choice of test subject.

This is untrue; mice and rats are chosen specifically because their bodies actually react very similarly to ours (because we are both mammals), yet they have a much shorter life cycle (making tests much faster). There are exceptions, but researchers can (and do) take those exceptions into account.

This is you dodging the question by spreading FUD about the efficacy of animal testing.

> Product testing (whether cosmetic or medical) only ever lasts a few months or at most a few years, and is useless for determining whether the product causes or exacerbates chronic illnesses like cancer or Parkinsons.

It is not, because mice have very short life-spans. Laboratory mice live for a few years at most, so those "at most a few years" tests you mention are essentially the equivalent of testing a human from birth to old age, and it takes a tiny fraction of the time.

> There are adults in special care facilities who have a mental age of about 2. Since they are and will always be less sentient than an adult human, and probably less so than an adult mouse, it would be ok to safety test medicines on these people, would it not? If not, why not?

No, because it has nothing to do with sentience. It has to do with one thing only: is the creature human? If not, then they're not people and the same moral standards do not apply. Don't confuse my position with the vegan position.

calher

I am a member!

Hors ligne
A rejoint: 06/19/2015

[blockquote]Take a look at the processed foods found at your local grocery store. Note the sugar content, and note that the amount of added sugar generally estimated to be acceptable in a healthy diet is about 100 calories, or roughly 25 grams. I guarantee you you will have a lot of difficulty finding any processed food, or any prepared food at all, without sugar added to it, often in insane amounts.[/blockquote]

I also guarantee that the majority of those products also contain vegetable oil.

Take a look at the "gainer" community. What do they say is the "best formula" for gaining? It's eating lots of sugar, and only lots of sugar, right?

Take a look at sumo wrestlers. How does their diet compare to rural Japanese folk? They must be eating more rice than the common Japanese, right?

Take a look for yourself.

Legimet
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 12/10/2013

I think this nutrition discussion is off topic, but anyway I wanted to say, keep up the veganism. :)

onpon4
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 05/30/2012

> I also guarantee that the majority of those products also contain vegetable oil.

Is that an admission that vegetable oil is bad for you (which it sometimes is), or are you trying to claim that sugar is not bad for you? I wasn't mentioning the prevalence of sugar to prove that it's bad for you. That sugar is bad for you has been thoroughly proven already.

> They must be eating more rice than the common Japanese, right?

As a matter of fact, they are.

"To complement their mighty meal, sumo wrestlers eat around 5–10 bowls of rice and copious amounts of beer, required for empty calories. A healthy rikishi (力士, sumo wrestler) may down as many as 6 pints during the midday meal."

Source: https://www.lingualift.com/blog/what-sumo-eat-wrestlers-diet/

calher

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A rejoint: 06/19/2015

I'm saying that you need to pay attention to oil as much as you do sugar. People do well to get rid of the sugar in their diet, but they fail to replace the oil with nutritious fats.

calher

I am a member!

Hors ligne
A rejoint: 06/19/2015

Most of that meal is fish, and fish never has that large a ratio on the plate of the common citizen.

calher

I am a member!

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A rejoint: 06/19/2015

(They did well to follow the Gainer advice of having lots of fat in the form of fish and simple sugar in the form of beer.)

strypey
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 05/14/2015

onPon, I admire your chutzpah in taking on this debate, and I recognise that you are being somewhat dogpiled here. I will do my best to keep my contributions civil and to the point.

FindEssential:
>> It takes a lot of land to raise and feed meat producing animals, much more than just producing well rotated plants. <<

onPon:
>> I'm all for feeding the hungry, but population growth isn't just going to magically stop if we stop eating meat. <<

True, but also a strawman, as that wasn't what FindEssential claimed. In order to raise non-human animals for meat, you have to feed them plants. It's estimated that you have to feed a non-human herbivore about 10kg of plant protein for every 1kg of meat that can be eaten by killing them:
http://iopscience.iop.org/article/10.1088/1748-9326/11/10/105002

So you could provide 10 times the amount of human food from the same land, if you grew plant food for humans on it instead of using it to grow feed for creatures being farmed for meat. In other words, farming animals to eat them as food is basically a way of turning food into less food.

BTW Whether you feed them directly to humans or reduce their food value by running them through non-humans and eating them, the plants are going to die either way. So raising strawman vegetable rights arguments (as you have in other comments) is simply a distraction, although one that I think has been answered well by other commenters.

I'd also like to comment on the nutrition issue. Meat provides exactly two nutrients; protein and iron. While it's true that no one plant food provides every kind of protein in the high amounts meat does, that's a good thing. Too much protein has been linked to a number of health problems. All plant are rich in proteins, and it's easy to get a full range of the proteins a human body needs from eating a normal range of plants foods (where do you think herbivores get it from, the sun?). More about this here:
https://michaelbluejay.com/veg/protein.html

The same is true of iron. Iron is more easily absorbed by the body in small, regular amounts (not steaks or supplements). Vegans and vegetarians do tend to have lower stores of iron in our bodies, but we do not have lower rates of anaemia. Also, there's evidence that bodily iron storage at the lower end of normal is healthier than at the higher end; improved insulin function and lower rates of heart disease and cancer. See:
https://www.nomeatathlete.com/iron-for-vegetarians/

BTW Meat is also generally thought to contain vitamin B12, but in practice probably only organically-produced meat. B12 is secretions from symbiotic bacteria that get destroyed by the chemicals and process used in industrial meat farming (eg routine feeding of farm animals with antibiotics). B12 is often considered to be a problem for vegetarians and particularly vegans, but there are plant sources, and as with anaemia, meat eaters have problems with B12 deficiency at the same rates as non-meat-eaters.

So not only can a plant-based diet easily supply the two nutrients that meat reliably supplies, but humans cannot live on meat, or even a high-meat diet, and be healthy. We also require carbohydrates for energy (proteins and fats can be broken down for this but it's like feeding a normal petrol engine 2-stroke), and a range of non-iron minerals and vitamins, all of which are only found in plant foods. We also require EFAs like Omega 2 which can be found in very few animal foods (eg some fish) but can be more easily obtained from plant foods like beans, leafy greens, squash, berries, sea vegetables etc:
https://plenteousveg.com/vegan-sources-omega-3/

There is significant evidence that like our cousins the chimps and bonobos, our earliest ancestors eat mostly plants (roots, shoots, leaves, fruits, and seeds), occasionally supplemented by insects or small animals, yes, but only during lean times. It's also possible that like our other cousin the gorilla, they were completely vegetarian. If you compare humans and other apes with carnivores and herbivores, our physiology is *much* more similar to the latter.

However, anything said about human prehistory is 1) highly contested and based on minimal evidence that can be interpreted various ways and 2) beside the point. Regardless of what our ancestors did or didn't eat, nutrition science makes it clear that modern humans are omnivores, and can live long healthy lives without eating animal products of any kind. Paleo-style arguments about determining what we should eat based on just-so stories about early humans are simply irrelevant.

onpon4
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 05/30/2012

> So you could provide 10 times the amount of human food from the same land, if you grew plant food for humans on it instead of using it to grow feed for creatures being farmed for meat.

You're dodging my primary contention: if you increase the food supply, population will increase to compensate. It will not help overpopulation, it will only increase the population of humans. I don't consider increasing the population of humans to be a moral good; the number of humans does not matter. What matters is the quality of life for the humans that do exist.

> Meat provides exactly two nutrients; protein and iron.

That's an over-simplified picture that tells me you buy the crap the USDA puts out.

"Protein" is not just one kind of nutrition source. There are several kinds of proteins you need, and meat is the most complete source of them.

Meat has all sorts of nutrients in it. It's not a static value; different meats have different levels of nutrients. It's not just iron, and it's not always iron. For example, take a look at the nutrition information for beef:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beef#Nutrition_and_health

And finally, you're ignoring another very important nutrient, fat. The USDA and other government organizations have been spreading the myth that fat is bad for you for decades. Fat is an essential nutrient. Your body needs it for all sorts of things, including brain development when you are a child. There is also no good evidence that fat has any negative health effects for anybody, and no good evidence that unsaturated fats are better for you than saturated fats. Yet there is evidence that excess Omega-6 fatty acid consumption, which exists in very high quantities in many vegetable oils, causes bad health outcomes:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Omega-6#Suggested_negative_health_effects

The point I'm trying to make is, you can't just simplify this to "this nutrient that the USDA measures exists in this plant too, so this plant can replace this piece of meat". It's much more complex than that, and it's not fully understood. But as far as proteins and fats go, meat is a very reliable food source that has been used for millennia.

> humans cannot live on meat, or even a high-meat diet, and be healthy.

Just a note: the traditional Inuit diet consisted entirely of meat. They are a special case (they have some unusual ocean-based sources), but it bears mentioning.

As for high-meat diets, people have been eating high-meat diets for our entire history. It was only the advent of farming in the neolithic that allowed us to eat large numbers of plant foods to begin with. Unless you're an Inuit eating a traditional Inuit diet, yes, you need some plants. But people's perception of this is greatly exaggerated, and the plants you need are things like leafy greens, root vegetables, legumes, and beans, not cereal grain crops.

> We also require carbohydrates for energy

Yes, but the amount we actually need is very small. The USDA recommends eating something like half of our energy in the form of carbs, which is quite excessive. Over 80% of your energy needs can be met with ketosis, the process of burning fat stores, and our bodies are designed to do that on a regular basis. It's the constant excess intake of unnecessary carbs that forces our bodies to store a lot of what we eat as fat, never burn any fat, and increase the size of our collective waistlines.

> There is significant evidence that like our cousins the chimps and bonobos, our earliest ancestors eat mostly plants

That doesn't matter; they're not us, and our species have different diets.

> Regardless of what our ancestors did or didn't eat, nutrition science makes it clear that modern humans are omnivores, and can live long healthy lives without eating animal products of any kind.

"Can" does not imply that it's easy or that it's a reasonable expectation.

FindEssential
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 08/23/2017

Thanks Strypey, though I am sure your well reasoned response is wasted on the OP. When I saw in their original reply to me that they had twisted my statements around to make a non-point and then kept moving the goal post to fit their worldview with others I decided this thread was a waste of my time. Of course I usually decide such threads where one person seems to think they are entitled to be personally sold on something completely for it to be valid as rather trollish.

My efforts are better spent interacting with more intellectually honest people and I am sure yours are too Strypey. I just wanted to aknowledge your strong attempt to provide public source material, even if the OP isn't going to appreciate it.

onpon4
Hors ligne
A rejoint: 05/30/2012

You do see that I replied to this post you're praising, right? This is just one of my many posts that my detractors have not been able to refute.

I'm not aware of any time I moved the goal post. The goal post is exactly where it was at the start: whether or not reducing the number of animal deaths is a moral good. I have given several arguments for why reducing animal deaths is not necessarily a moral good (it depends on the circumstances), and I have pointed out that reducing the number of animal deaths is not as simple as ending domestication (hence my discussion elsewhere in this thread about the irony of protecting lions from extinction).

> My efforts are better spent interacting with more intellectually honest people

I'm sure that probably really means "people who already agree with me". Which is fine, but I do wish you would admit that my disagreement with your values is why you consider me a "waste of [your] time", instead of implicitly accusing me of dishonesty.