Vegans and Vegetarianism and the Animal Rights Issue

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SpyderEdgeForever
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Vegans and Vegetarianism and the Animal Rights Issue

Postby SpyderEdgeForever » Fri Jan 18, 2013 11:01 am

I know this issue can become very controversial but I would like honest discussion on it. What are your thoughts everyone?

My stance is this: I have no problem with someone choosing to eat only a plant based diet and not eat meat or animal products, that is their right and their choice. Myself, I eat meat and animal foods as well as plant foods, and I believe in animal welfare: Don't abuse animals and do not use cruelty or excessive harm, yet, we have a right to make use of them for meat, dairy, and other products.

But I see and hear the claims put forth by the animal rights crowd, and the extreme vegans, who make it a political and almost religious fervor to attack and put down those who eat meat and wear leather.

A vegan animal rightist told me I am an "evil cruel abusive monster" because I ate a chicken sandwich. He said this is murder, that meat is murder, and he seemed totally serious.

Have any of you here run across these people?

I point out to them that even the most vegan person in some way consumes products that in some form benefit from animal use and animal death, such as fertilizers and pesticides.

What also bothers me are those who are against hunting and fishing and related activities. It is the hunters and fishermen and other sportsmen and sportswomen who do more to help and conserve nature than the animal rights vegan crowd. Am I right about this everyone?


As an example, I read about these animal rights "activists" who dressed in bright colors and carried loud noisemakers, and they followed after deer and bear hunters to harass them and to make noise and interfer with their legal hunting season. Can you imagine that?

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Postby r small » Fri Jan 18, 2013 2:40 pm

True believers of any stripe are usually a PITA. But if someone can maintain a vegan lifestyle without being a nuisance I respect that. Takes alot of discipline and commitment to be a vegan. I know I couldn't do it. I keep to a minimum the amount of meat that I eat but about once a week I have to have me some charred animal flesh.

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Postby Evil D » Fri Jan 18, 2013 3:15 pm

I will support anyone fighting for animal rights, as far as treating them better before they're slaughtered. Better living conditions, etc. However, I fully believe that humans are top of the food chain and have every right to eat any animal on Earth. I don't support mass slaughter and near extinction of animals, and I don't support things like shark fin soup where the shark is left to die after getting its fins cut off. I believe if you're going to kill an animal for food you need to process the entire animal and use everything you can for food and not let it go to waste. The food processing industry is an evil thing, but it's a necessary evil thing. I would love it if we could all go out and hunt and provide for ourselves, but lifestyles just don't allow it, not to mention we would quickly extinguish deer populations if the however many billion people in America all started hunting at the same time.
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Postby FroOchie » Fri Jan 18, 2013 4:51 pm

My thinking is simple... why is it only Humans get picked on for eating meat? I don't see PETA going after Lions for killing Zebra's for food. Anyone thats ever seen that on Discovery knows the horror in such a a heinous act of murder. I don't care what people eat but when they start to care what I eat I start having a problem.
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Postby Evil D » Fri Jan 18, 2013 4:54 pm

FroOchie wrote:My thinking is simple... why is it only Humans get picked on for eating meat? I don't see PETA going after Lions for killing Zebra's for food. Anyone thats ever seen that on Discovery knows the horror in such a a heinous act of murder. I don't care what people eat but when they start to care what I eat I start having a problem.
They would argue that we have the power of reason on our side and can think beyond what a lion can. Lions can't make tofurkey and live off pasta lol.
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Postby The Deacon » Fri Jan 18, 2013 5:04 pm

I believe in treating animals decently, and killing those raised or hunted for food as quickly and painlessly as possible. I do not believe in "animal rights" simply because of the extremist groups that use that term and the meanings they have given it. If someone wishes not to eat meat, that's their business. If someone calls me a murderer for enjoying a steak or a BLT, I'll laugh in their face.
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Postby SolidState » Fri Jan 18, 2013 7:30 pm

I live in Eugene and Portland Oregon - home of vegans. I get a ton of crap about eating meat and enjoying hunting from vegans. I ask them why they drive up the prices of staple grains for impoverished world populations (see quinoa) so much that people can't afford not to eat meat if they're so hardcore about it.

I think there are some serious issues with our farming subsidy and industry in terms of animal products. Factory farming is a big issue, and it brings a lot of negatives for very few positives. It is not a good trade. I'm against cheap, factory-farmed chicken pork and beef because they bring antibiotic resistant bacteria and e-coli with them. I'm all for free-range and grass-fed meats. Nothing grills up like a painted hills steak.

I don't think meat should be as cheap and readily available as it is in this country. We pay a lot of taxes for that, and the "dollar menu" items rarely cost a dollar when subsidy and long-term health issues are factored in. I also believe that people should have to participate in a slaughter of each individual species of animal that they want to eat in order to attain a license to eat said animal. Our food culture would change substantially.
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Postby DeathBySnooSnoo » Fri Jan 18, 2013 8:05 pm

How can you tell if someone is a vegan?

Don't worry, they will tell you! Ha Ha Ha

Seriously now.

This is my take. Animals should be well treated and allowed to live as close as possible to how they would if wild. Now in this day and age that might be rather limited...but it should be what the produces strive for.

I also believe that we North Americans and Europeans (amongst others I'm sure) eat far far more meat than our bodies need. The biological truth is that our bodies would be plenty happy and sustained with about 4-6oz of beef (or the equivalent protein amount of any other meat) 2-3 times a week, if we were eating a good amount of nuts, seeds and legumes.

But we have become accustomed to eating large portions of meat several times a day, along with a very very high volume of grains. This is not the way people were made to eat. Grains are in fact completely not a part of what humans should be eating.

If we all lowered our meat consumption by 25%. lowered our grain consumption by 50% and increased our vegetable(and fruit to some degree) and seed and nut consumption we would all be much much healthier.
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Postby Sequimite » Fri Jan 18, 2013 8:31 pm

Wow, I think a agree with everybody. My nephew and his wife are Vegans and I've had some very open discussions with them about it. To each his own.

Does remind me of a funny story. When I moved here in 2008 I checked out a bunch of different discussion groups. In one the discussion leader, an elderly woman, asked how many in the room were vegetarians. After raising her own hand and surveying the others who had raised their hands she noticed with a start that her husband hadn't raised his. "You're a vegetarian" she told him. "Yeah, but I don't have a choice", he replied.
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Postby Minibear453 » Fri Jan 18, 2013 8:48 pm

I eat meat. A lot of other animals do too. I figure, if they can eat meat, I can too. And while I'm against animal cruelty and a quick and painless death for the meat we eat, I also consider that in nature, wolves will chase a deer, and just start tearing at it and eating it while it tries to run away. And it usually takes the deer awhile to die. Compared to that, the way we process our meat is a lot more humane. Of course, being more humane is better, but to me, everyone's got to die, and one day, it'll be my turn to die. The thing I'm really against is all those cramped cages and such. At least have a nice life first right?
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Postby w3tnz » Fri Jan 18, 2013 9:08 pm

I think I would echo the sentiments of most here, I'm a bit of an animal lover but I love to eat them too. I would agree that the majority of processing would be more humane than a wild (predatory) death but I always buy free range when I can, it is more expensive but I like to know my meal has lived a happy life.
As for vegans that is their choice, but I would not let them impose their beliefs on me, I can make my own mind up. The jewish have Kosher food, muslims have Halal, I don't live by either but agree with most of the principles in a practical sense, that the animal has lived a good live and has been slaughtered humanely.
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Postby bdblue » Sat Jan 19, 2013 12:43 am

If you believe in God and the bible then you cannot say that we are intended to be vegans, but anyone that chooses to be a vegan is certainly free to do so.

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Postby SolidState » Sat Jan 19, 2013 2:33 am

bdblue wrote:If you believe in God and the bible then you cannot say that we are intended to be vegans, but anyone that chooses to be a vegan is certainly free to do so.
Depends which god or gods you believe in. FYI, there are far more people who believe in gods that advocate vegetarianism than christians.
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Postby Monocrom » Sat Jan 19, 2013 3:04 am

SolidState wrote:Depends which god or gods you believe in. FYI, there are far more people who believe in gods that advocate vegetarianism than christians.
Call it God, evolution, Mother Nature, or pick your favorite Deity, make one up; whatever.

Notice those teeth that everyone has up front? Both top and bottom. Yeah, those teeth are specifically designed for tearing meat off bone. They're not designed to help folks chew vegetables into smaller and smaller pieces. Humans are omnivores by design. Intended to chow down on both meat and vegetables. Not one or the other.
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Postby SolidState » Sat Jan 19, 2013 3:25 am

Monocrom wrote:Call it God, evolution, Mother Nature, or pick your favorite Deity, make one up; whatever.

Notice those teeth that everyone has up front? Both top and bottom. Yeah, those teeth are specifically designed for tearing meat off bone. They're not designed to help folks chew vegetables into smaller and smaller pieces. Humans are omnivores by design. Intended to chow down on both meat and vegetables. Not one or the other.
Agreed through and through. I don't think we'd have brains the size we do without our ancestors utilizing meat as a source of proteins and fatty acids. I just think it's a really weak argument to point to a lesser-followed god as a reason to eat meat. Hindus outnumber christians and don't eat meat because their gods say not to.
Modern Chinese are atheists, outnumber christians by a long shot, and the only thing on four legs they don't eat is the table.
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Postby The Deacon » Sat Jan 19, 2013 5:17 am

SolidState wrote:Depends which god or gods you believe in. FYI, there are far more people who believe in gods that advocate vegetarianism than christians.
Not trying to turn this into a religious discussion, but the idea that "God gave man dominion over the animals" first appears in Genesis, and the idea that it was acceptable for humans to eat at least some animals was expanded upon elsewhere in the next four books of the Bible. So it's not specifically Christian, it's common to all the religions that believe in "that God" and use those five books as part of their belief system. And, even if that group is not the majority on earth, the post you quoted never claimed it to be.
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Postby kbuzbee » Sat Jan 19, 2013 6:28 am

SpyderEdgeForever wrote:Have any of you here run across these people?
No, but I don't get out much. ;)

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Postby SolidState » Sat Jan 19, 2013 2:50 pm

The Deacon wrote:And, even if that group is not the majority on earth, the post you quoted never claimed it to be.
Not the point Deacon, that's not the point at all.

This doesn't need to be a religious discussion, and my post was illustrating the fact that the religious argument based upon the beliefs of a relatively small number of people when taken into context isn't the strongest argument against vegetarianism / veganism because a HUGE number of people who believe in "God" have religious reasons not to eat meat. God is a blanket term for a deity.

My post was referring to the blatant religious insult to much of this world of not specifying a specific god in clausal statements such as "if you believe in god... then x, y, z." Many people have a non-Jesus / Yahweh god, and it is an insult to those communities to make that kind of blanket statement. It would be similarly insulting to Christians for a Hindu to say "If you believe in God you would never eat meat." As a guaranteed religious outsider in this particular community, I can state that the underlying allusions of the post that I offered my input on are less than ideal to a great number of people outside the quoted religion (and will bet you a :spyder: that it's Christianity). Many times, global context is lost on practitioners of Abrahamian religion due to the underlying psychology of dualistic monotheism, and it should be mentioned that statements such as "If you believe in God or the bible" are terribly condescending to those who believe in Vishnu, Shiva, Ganesha, or the Dalai Lama as their chief deity because the statement inherently implies the illegitimacy of others' deities. Many, if not most people believe in other God equivalently to Abrahamians, they just do it differently because they have different supporting texts. Heck, if the poster had stated Yahweh, or better: Jesus, it wouldn't be condescending at all to followers of other gods because Yahweh and Jesus are specific to which god he's talking about. God is a term for Yahweh, Ganesha, Vishnu, Ahura Mazda, Zeus, Poseidon, etc. ad nauseum.

Since it was already brought up, and then I got trotted out for calling someone on it, let's now go to the old testament (since you felt it necessary to quote Genesis), where we find that in Leviticus 11, Yahweh orders Abrahamian religions (Christians, Jews and Muslims) not to eat a great deal of the products that make up the diet of our culture such as: ham, bacon, cheeseburgers(Deuteronomy 14:21), sausage/pepperoni pizza, shrimp, lobster, rabbit, hare, catfish, oysters, snakes, and crab. Sure, Yahweh gave abrahamians dominion, but there's a really long list of which critters should not be eaten, and a similarly long list of allowed methods of preparation.

Anyway, I don't think that any of that has anything to do with veganism because nowhere in that religious text does it compel followers to eat animals unless you count transubstantiated bread and wine as meat and blood. It simply offers the option - which bdblue did state and I would like to give him expressed credit for.
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Postby The Mastiff » Sun Jan 20, 2013 6:21 am

I also believe that people should have to participate in a slaughter of each individual species of animal that they want to eat in order to attain a license to eat said animal. Our food culture would change substantially.
Have to get a license to eat whatever animal you want to eat huh?

Respecting others choices and freedoms doesn't come naturally to you does it? Please no " Cost to society" lectures. :) .

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Postby Sequimite » Sun Jan 20, 2013 6:47 am

To bad we can't get into a full blown discussion of Genesis. It's a fascinating topic.
Our reason is quite satisfied, in 999 cases out of every 1000 of us, if we can find a few arguments that will do to recite in case our credulity is criticized by someone else. Our faith is faith in someone else's faith, and in the greatest matters this is most the case.
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