There once was a sham of a contest, hosted by the New York Times, under the pretense of drawing out the logical and sensible among us who <GASP!> eat meat.
A terrific response to this contest was written by Travis Arp, a Ph.D. student at Colorado State University studying Meat Science.
Like a number of bloggers and facebook friends, I too considered entering a submission to the contest, which sought to answer the question: “Why is it ethical to eat meat?” After some thought, I opted against the submission simply because I saw it as a colossal waste of time. In short, I considered the bias of the judges involved and the limited and arguably tone-deaf nature of the audience of the magazine.
It would have been a fun exercise, I initially though. After all, I did study philosophy in college while majoring in communications and the challenge of posing an ethical argument to eating meat sounded fun, particularly as one who likes to eat meat.
But then there were the rules: “This is a very specific contest. Don’t tell us why you like meat, why organic trumps local or why your food is yours to choose. Just tell us why it’s ethical to eat meat.”
So, did that mean I couldn’t draw in reference to God and His creation of animals and vegetables for our consumption and nutrition? After all, according to many self-important philosophers, you can’t very well invoke God in the debate since he arguably doesn’t exist, or if he does he’s ambivalent to mankind.
Nevertheless I gave in and gave up to the idea of entering the contest. And apparently so did many others, who likewise figured it was a waste of their time to try to convince people who have no desire for legitimate debate.
The absurdity of the question begs such a response. “Why is it ethical to eat meat?” Really?! That’s a question we should really be pondering amongst ourselves? Turn it around: Why is it ethical to eat vegetables? After all, we’re taking the food source of a whole host of animals in order to meet our self-righteous desire for to eat plants?
It’s not difficult to discern where these kinds of questions and arguments come from. The liberal, self-important mind is a strange animal unto itself. People who think they know better than everyone else for no other reason than their own self righteousness is, in and of itself, ridiculous!
But, here we go again, playing defense to a premise that meat is bad, animal agriculture is evil and farmers are a bunch of hay-seed hicks who haven’t evolved like the rest of the self-righteous elite. The notion that somehow the 1% who toil to provide wholesome, safe, delicious food for everyone else, including themselves, are inherently immoral should serve as nothing more than the punchline to a ridiculous joke!
- Is it ethical to eat meat? (actthree.net)
- Rabbi Edward Bernstein: Teaching Our Children The Ethics Of Eating Meat (huffingtonpost.com)
- The Ethics of Eating Meat (aakissmygrass.wordpress.com)
- Scientists are growing meat in petri dishes (philosophyafterdark.wordpress.com)
- Is Eating Meat Ethical? (mfwblog.com)
- A simple argument for vegetarianism (thinkingreed.wordpress.com)
- ‘Our Hen House’ Contest: Why It’s Unethical to Eat Meat (opinionessoftheworld.com)
- The ethics of meat eating (theconscientiousomnivore.wordpress.com)
- Meatless Monday and Social Responsibility (businessethicsblog.com)
- Is meat bad for you? (livingbeyondorganicmom.wordpress.com)
- It’s official: China now eats twice the meat we do (grist.org)