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  •  What gives you the right (2+ / 0-)
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    Eikyu Saha, ontheleftcoast

    to kill and eat plants?

    Sounds like a silly question, doesn't it? You probably don't consider plants particularly morally-relevant. They're relevant enough that you probably wouldn't want to cause extinctions of entire species, and there are some individual plants (probably mostly things like old growth trees) that you wouldn't want to kill, but most individual food plants aren't terribly important in a moral sense.

    In other words, you don't believe that all living things have equal moral relevance - you view it as a spectrum, and you draw a particular line below which it's permissible to kill things for food.

    Meat-eaters just draw that line in a different place.

    "Let’s just move on, treat everybody with firmness, fairness, dignity, compassion and respect. Let’s be Marines." - Sgt. Maj Michael Barrett on DADT repeal

    by kyril on Wed Nov 21, 2012 at 08:27:07 PM PST

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    •  I have to eat something to live. (1+ / 0-)
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      Pandora

      For people with no viable alternative options, being carnivorous is ethically acceptable.  For those that do, it's not.  Living things with vertebrate nervous systems have many of the same perceptual / emotional systems as we do, even if it's less complex - you wouldn't say it's okay to kill a human with brain damage that leaves them in the behavioral state of an animal, would you?  Plants don't have these systems.    

      "They fear this man. They know he will see farther than they, and he will bind them with ancient logics." -The stoner guy in The Cabin in the Woods

      by Troubadour on Wed Nov 21, 2012 at 08:37:35 PM PST

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      •  Plants have other systems (0+ / 0-)

        which serve much the same purpose.

        "Let’s just move on, treat everybody with firmness, fairness, dignity, compassion and respect. Let’s be Marines." - Sgt. Maj Michael Barrett on DADT repeal

        by kyril on Wed Nov 21, 2012 at 08:54:10 PM PST

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        •  No they don't. (0+ / 0-)

          I have a comprehensive biology textbook on my shelf that weighs more than my computer describing every facet of plant biology that a non-professional could possibly understand, and there's nothing remotely analogous to the vertebrate nervous system among plants.  But, of course, I would defer to any biologist who says otherwise since I'm a layman.

          But even ignoring that for the moment, once again, humans have to eat to live and be healthy.  So it's acceptable for people who have no viable alternatives to eat meat; and it's acceptable for me to eat plants, since that is the morally best option (not to mention ecologically best option).

          "They fear this man. They know he will see farther than they, and he will bind them with ancient logics." -The stoner guy in The Cabin in the Woods

          by Troubadour on Wed Nov 21, 2012 at 11:21:42 PM PST

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          •  You've backed yourself into a corner (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            kyril

            You don't have to consume any living thing to survive. You could eat the excretions, they create -- say milk or honey or syrup. You could "farm" bacteria like E. coli to produce amino acids and other compounds. If you really wanted to do it you could eat food that required nothing, not plant nor animal, would die. Face it, we kill plants because it's convenient. But technology is probably going to save our bacon (and quite literally). We're going to have to start growing food outside of the traditional sense. In sci-fi there are concepts of things called "cornucopic vats". Basically you pump in raw materials, C - H - O - N and energy (and some trace elements) and out comes food. It'll be like tofu only with less flavor. With billions of mouths to feed and global warming playing havoc on the food chain it's going to be dining from vats or starving in less than a century. Then nobody will be a carnivore or even a herbivore. Well all be tofuvores.

            To me progress is not so much a goal as it is a process and I believe it will not follow a straight course. Remember, the drops of water that form the river may not take the shortest path but they will still reach the ocean.

            by ontheleftcoast on Thu Nov 22, 2012 at 12:54:46 AM PST

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            •  I'm unaware of any viable alternative (0+ / 0-)

              to eating plants and their products.  Viable alternative - i.e., one that doesn't take more energy away from me in the execution of a complex program than it provides in nutrition.  I fully believe science will some day construct food molecule by molecule, and not require the death of anything more advanced than rocks, but that day is not yet here.

              "They fear this man. They know he will see farther than they, and he will bind them with ancient logics." -The stoner guy in The Cabin in the Woods

              by Troubadour on Thu Nov 22, 2012 at 01:01:01 AM PST

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      •  Actually, it would depend (0+ / 0-)

        I might, depending on the previously expressed wishes of the person in question.  There's the question -- I suggest that you're ignoring the ability to foresee consequences, and even to recognize "self" that all food animals lack -- that ability is limited to some chimpanzees, dolphins, some whales, and, of course, humans.

        •  The past doesn't own the future. (0+ / 0-)

          If someone expresses a wish that someone should kill them if they ever leave their church, that doesn't mean it should be done if that event happens.  Vegetative states are one thing - in that case, the closest thing to sentient will is their past expressions - but animal states are just will devoid of logic, and logic is not a requirement for rights (otherwise little children wouldn't have any).

          "They fear this man. They know he will see farther than they, and he will bind them with ancient logics." -The stoner guy in The Cabin in the Woods

          by Troubadour on Wed Nov 21, 2012 at 11:26:20 PM PST

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