Another Argument Against Vegetarianism - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 02-07-2008, 05:33 AM
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Yeah, I'm back - with yet another quote from one of my friends...

"I am not a vegetarian and i personally believe that it goes completely against nature to be one. If you look at nature how many animals out there are eating other animals? A lot of them do. It is just the circle of life one animal eating another. In nature it isn't seen as cruel or unusual when a lion eats a zebra so why is it so wrong when a human eats a chicken or pig? We as humans are also animals just further evolved ones with a higher capacity for intellect then other animals."

Thoughts & comments welcomed.
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#2 Old 02-07-2008, 05:45 AM
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Your friend said it herself. We're further evolved, therefore we can make an educated choice. Also we do not need to eat meat to survive and as far as I am aware some other animals do. We are also not living out in the wild having to survive on whatever we can get our hands on. We have every food we could ever want available to us all year round! We have choice.
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#3 Old 02-07-2008, 06:27 AM
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There's a huge difference between a lion eating a zebra and a human eating a chicken. Lions are carnivores and do actually need meat to survive. Humans are omnivores, but actually are biologically much closer to herbivores that carnivores, so we can pretty much survive on a vegetarian diet. Secondly a lion can catch a zebra with his bare hands (or paws, claws whatever), once your friend can do that rather than eat animals that have been raised in factory farm conditions and then slaughtered with no chance whatsover of defending themselves or running away then I might grudgingly accept the fact that there is no difference between humans and lions eating other animals.

The whole "it's against nature" argument is flawed anyway. Nobody who I've heard using this argument can actually define what they mean by "natural." Most make some vague reference to other animals or "primitive" societies, which would also rule out a million other things such as personal hygiene, motorized transport, computers, any form of clothing beyond animal hides etc.
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#4 Old 02-07-2008, 06:49 AM
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To your friend, I would have said, " Don't be a vegetarian then, and respect me as a person enough to not criticize me for my beliefs and diet." That is of course, unless you brought it up to them.
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#5 Old 02-07-2008, 06:49 AM
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Also in the wild, the playing field is level. I have never seen or heard of a lion eating a zebra after he killed it with a high powered rifle. I think humans have every right to eat animals.... provided they catch it and kill it with their bare hands, no bow & arrow, no rifles, no nets, etc. I would speculate on the winner of a lion vs. man contest but I think that question has been answered many times over. Since I can kill and eat plants with my bare hands, that's what I eat.
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#6 Old 02-07-2008, 07:20 AM
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Screw the “it’s natural” debate....

Let's stop for a second and think about from a general perspective what a cow would bring to our westernized lifestyles if we were to just let them roam free, "grazing"..... Absoloutly nothing (if you discount their crap).

Without harvesting any of the qualities cow's posses- meat (beef cattle), milk (dairy cattle), and hides we would just be leading ourselves into a false sense of accomplisment. These are afterall just simple creatures, treating or even comparing other living organisms on earth to Homo sapiens really is plain idiocy.

Humans have a highly developed brain capable of abstract reasoning, language, and introspection. This mental capability, combined with an erect body carriage that frees their upper limbs for manipulating objects, has allowed humans to make far greater use of tools than any other species. Take note of the following extract below-

Diary of a cow-

What follows is a diary of a cow on a cattle ranch. The diary documents every day the cow lived, but since many of the days contain similair activities, only relevant excerpts are shown here:

June 5, 1989:

I stood around in a field today.

April 12, 1993:

I chewed the grass to deep and accidentally swallowed a rock. I sure am a dumb animal.

April 25, 1998:

It rained this afternoon while we were out in the field. There was a small tin roof covering a portion of the field, but we’re too ****ing stupid to eat under its cover. Instead, we opted to stand in pouring rain and emit loud moos every time we heard thunder beacause loud natural sounds that we’ve heard all our lives still frighten us.

July 9, 2003:

It’s my birthday today. A couple of guys from the field chipped in and got me dirt.

December 22, 2005:

I sure wish i could be eaten.

There you have to folks.....
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#7 Old 02-07-2008, 07:26 AM
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The "animals do it so why shouldn't we" defense is stupid. Animals clean their butt with their tongue. No thanks.

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#8 Old 02-07-2008, 10:10 AM
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1. If you have the capability to understand the consequences of eating other animals[ we understand that other animals are sentient and that eating them ends their lives and can make them suffer] and the capability to live perfectly healthily without eating them - then you have to make a decision to eat, or not to eat meat, and personally I think the compassionate choice is the best one.

Should you not understand the consequences of your actions, or should you be unable to survive without meat - you don't have that choice, so you don't have to make it.

2. If we're gonna follow the example of other animals: How many other animals FARM? They hunt, they don't farm. How much of the meat your friend eats did she hunt [and I don't see many other animals using guns and the likes either] and how much came from a farm somewhere...?

3. What's "natural" anyway? Is our lifestyle natural? We don't live like other animals, but we live the way we've evolved to live. If natural means like other animals - I don't want to be natural. If natural is the way we evolved to live... everything we do is natural. This natural word always confuses me...

Wordnet defines "existing in or produced by nature; not artificial or imitation".

Who knows? But what I do know is that "it's natural" isn't a good reason for me to do something. It's natural for my rabbit to eat it's own feaces... but on that I'll pass.

That's my thoughts anyway
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#9 Old 02-07-2008, 11:30 AM
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Ask your friend this... when you're hungry, does a live animal in a field look appealing? Could you kill it yourself, tear it apart with your teeth and eat it raw?

The other animals your friend mentioned do that, so their argument is a little weak.
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#10 Old 02-07-2008, 12:33 PM
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VibrantSunrise, Carnivores are herbivores too! I'll tell you why. When a lion kills a zebra, he eats the guts first. The reason is cause the lion has no enzyme to digest greens, when eating the guts the lion is eating digested greens. We all need veggies, it makes all of us omnivores!

When a human kills something, we don't eat the guts first or ever. Tell your friend to kill a dog and eat it on the spot.
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#11 Old 02-07-2008, 02:03 PM
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I do get that a lot, but then I did some research and found out this...

I hope it helps, wish you the best
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#12 Old 02-07-2008, 02:20 PM
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If someone is going to compare a human to other animals, I think it makes more sense to compare us to an animal which is more like us biologically than a cat is. What do primates eat? I know some of them eat fish, and chimps will hunt for meat, but for the most part their diet is fruits, seeds, nuts, etc. That doesn't suggest on it's own that we should be vegetarian (you have to add in the "higher capacity for intellect" bit for that), but it does give a stronger comparison across species.
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#13 Old 02-07-2008, 05:50 PM
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I am not completely against a human eating an animal, but I am more against the exploitation of animals themselves. Therefore if your friend were to eat organic meats, or to hunt what it is that they eat, then I think I would have more respect for the situation.

Also like one of the initial responders said, I hope that we have evolved far enough that we can make concious desicions on what are right and wrong foods to eat. We don't need to treat animals like crap just to get ourselves fed.

God loved birds, he created trees.
Man loved birds, he created cages.
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#14 Old 02-07-2008, 06:48 PM
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Yeah...ugh...NO. Thats the oldest excuse in the book. "since animals are cute and they do it, I think we should too because they do it"....doesn't work for me.
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#15 Old 02-07-2008, 07:53 PM
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As everyone has said, comparative anatomy and behavior is ridiculous. An educated person who has had any basic classes on arguing will not state, "Polar bears eat seals so apes should eat gazelle." That assertion is meaningless and proves nothing. If you want to compare us to something, compare us to apes and chimps: they are 97% vegan, 3% insect eaters. We're closest to them, of all animals, in our DNA.

Always ask: What values are you pushing? Dominance and enslavement of sub-species or compassion through science and modern agriculture? Ignore the surface level of the meat eaters assertions and dig to the core: What is it you (your friend), the omni, really pushing as the "right way to live"?

Some of my favorite quotes:

"Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute..."

-- Proverbs 31:8 (part of the instructions to King Lamuel from his mom about how to be a good man)

"Whenever you have truth it must be given with love, or the message and the messenger will be rejected"

-- Mahatma Gandhi

The two I think are most relevant to your friend:

"When a man's love of finery clouds his moral judgment, that is vanity. When he lets a demanding palate make his moral choices, that is gluttony. When he ascribes the divine will to his own whims, that is pride. And when he gets angry at being reminded of animal suffering that his own daily choices might help avoid, that is moral cowardice."

-- Matthew Scully, Dominion

"A man can live and be healthy without killing animals for food; therefore, if he eats meat, he participates in taking animal life merely for the sake of his appetite. And to act so is immoral."

-- Leo Tolstoy

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#16 Old 02-07-2008, 08:29 PM
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Common sense and biology shows us that we are naturally raw vegans with the exception I would say of insects.

Also look at all the animals out there that don't eat meat?

“May all sentient beings be free of pain and suffering.  May all sentient beings experience eternal joy and happiness.  gate gate pāragate pārasaṃgate bodhi svāhā.”!/MartyBaureis

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#17 Old 02-07-2008, 08:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Michael View Post

The "animals do it so why shouldn't we" defense is stupid. Animals clean their butt with their tongue. No thanks.

Rabbits eat their own **** to get proper nutrition, and there is no way in hell I plan on doing that.
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#18 Old 02-07-2008, 09:49 PM
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How many people say, "Hey I'm not going to get on the computer/drive a car/use any technological device/live in a modern house/use a complex verbal language, because animals don't do it."

I believe everything.
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#19 Old 02-07-2008, 09:55 PM
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You know what, at the end of the day you're the one who is going to have to live with yourself and your decision about eating animals or not. People can come up with a million stupid arguments against vegetarianism, but you don't have to justify your decision to anyone, nor do you have to respond to any of other people's justifications for continuing to contribute to the suffering and death of animals.
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#20 Old 02-08-2008, 06:49 AM
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Let's see, there are probably 50,000 lions out there in the wild. There are over 6 billion people in the world. Which group do you think has a bigger impact on the environment after a day of meals?

We may be the most "evolved" animal, but we have a seriously fatal flaw: greed.
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#21 Old 02-08-2008, 01:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Cissy View Post

Rabbits eat their own **** to get proper nutrition, and there is no way in hell I plan on doing that.

So is that vegan?


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#22 Old 02-08-2008, 01:43 PM
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What part of the "circle of life" involves mass over-breeding, injection of hormones, and the holding in captivity until brutally slaughtered, of animals? Also, if it is natural to eat other animals, then why not eat dogs and cats? Just because they are too cute to eat? Sounds more like society's expectations rather than nature.

Good luck with your friend, sounds like a handful!
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