Politics, open government, and safe streets. And the constant incursion of cycling.

Eat Meat? Then Why Are You Bothered By Cruelty to Animals?

Hal Herzong’s Some We Love, Some We Hate, Some We Eat touches on a subject I’ve long found confounding.


Saturday Morning Music: September Edition


Why Is Pakistan Left Begging For Help?


  1. Joy

    Really? You don’t get that there could be a distinction between how one treats and cares for an alive animal, or how one causes its death, and whether one chooses to eat them? If you think all killing of all animals is abuse, then I guess I see not making that distinction. But then I wonder where you draw the line – enslaving them for egg production is okay, killing them for meat consumption is not, killing the cockroach is okay, killing the lamb is not.

    I mean, I am very aware at how awful the large-scale animal protein production process is. And I was a vegetarian (although I ate fish) for 8 years, but it was for ecological reasons, not because I think eating animals is wrong.

  2. MB

    Really. If someone is eating meat (or consuming dairy), they’re sanctioning a level of cruelty that most folks would flip out about, on an individual level. Witness the rage that went around in response to the video of the girl chucking the puppies into the river. Stuff like that happens on a enormous scale, every day, to support the eating habits of 98% of those who were saying how awful it was. That’s what doesn’t make a lick of sense, to me.

  3. MB

    P.S. – Vegetarians don’t eat fish. (please imagine bug-eyed look to go along with that)

  4. Joy

    That’s why I qualified it – I did eat fish, as a concious choice about the ecological issues involved (at the time) in the production of various protein sources. I agree with you that if they knew about big animal farm practices people would flip out – and I think people should know that. Then again, most people don’t think that chickens and full grown cows are as cute as puppies, and (although I don’t know the research involved) those mammalian cuteness buttons are hardwired so that we don’t end up throwing our own babies out of the cave in the middle of the night when they are up crying for hours.

    But that is different than a blanket statement about killing animals being cruel. Not that I always choose the grass fed, free pastured cows down the street for meat, and I’ll totally admit to the superiority of someone who doesn’t fudge those lines.

  5. MB

    I don’t think I need to reach a blanket claim about killing animals being cruel. Rather, I’m saying that the standard practices involved in almost all meat product reach levels that would outrage people in any other setting. If that outrage is overcome by desire for a tasty burger? It’s false outrage.

  6. tx2vadem

    Well, how many people think about the way their food is produced when they are grocery shopping or dining out? I doubt a lot of people check the health inspection reports of restaurants before they dine there either. Plus, people are far removed from the consequences of their consumption. It is the same with Climate Change.

    Is that false outrage? I don’t know. The outrage could be genuine and they could have just developed some way of dealing with the cognitive dissonance.

  7. MB

    Well, how many people think about the way their food is produced when they are grocery shopping or dining out?

    Not enough, but more than before, I expect. But given the violence with which disgust at animal cruelty is expressed, I’d expect it to be more.

    You are, of course, heading down the right path with the issues of being removed from consequences and a defense of cognitive dissonance, but again, I remain surprised that people can talk about what a monster Michael Vick is while munching on a cheeseburger at McDonald’s.

  8. Warren

    That’s why I prefer to kill them myself. A 150gr. .30-06 round, invoking an immediately fatal case of double pneumonia, is a quicker death than any deer will ever get naturally.

  9. MB

    Unless, of course, you don’t get that shot. Then it’s a whole day of bleeding out and tracking. Sucks for everyone.

  10. Warren

    If I don’t have that shot, I don’t take the shot. Only one’s ever gone more than 10 yards from where he was hit.

    Bow-hunting is even better. I saw one jump at the twang of the string, look around for what made the sound, then go back to eating. A minute later, he just fell over. He never even knew he’d been shot.

  11. Warren

    (Oh, the one who went more than 10 yds went about 25 — he was stone blind from being bled out, and ran smack into an oak tree.

Powered by WordPress & Theme by Anders Norén