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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Greetings,<br><br><br><br>
I'm currently debating with someone about vegetarianism/veganism, and he proposed why should mankind turn away from the very disposition that we adopted in our primitive days and developed us thereafter, i.e. eating meat. How would you people respond to that point?<br><br><br><br>
Thanks.
 

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Why should mankind turn away from the very disposition that we adopted in our primitive days and developed us thereafter, i.e. <b>living in caves drawing stick figures on the walls?</b> or <b>the methods of slavery</b>?<br><br><br><br><br><br>
The point is that just because the majority of society developed along a disposition to eat meat, doesn't somehow mean that all human societies should continue this path unto the very last days of human society.<br><br><br><br>
Our past is defined by many events that we currently look down upon; however, many of those event defined the societies which they existed. Just because man had a disposition towards slavery for thousands of years of development doesn't mean that slavery should continue to be the foundation of growth in society forever, nor the subjugation of women, or many other things we look down upon that defined our past.<br><br><br><br>
We are generally on a upward movement of ethics - both in our own lives, and society in general. Similar to the Hierarchy of Needs, society has moved from "hunter/gatherer" seeking to fill the basics, to "self-actualization". We have moved from killing each other over anything - to having laws that say 'let the punishment fit the crime' - to much of society banning the death penalty. We have banned slavery and finally declared woman equal to men (two things society and man accepted and developed with).<br><br><br><br>
The point is that society moves along a path of ethics, along a path of needs. Now that we can survive without any animal subjugation - without beasts of burden or food animals - we should move past this lower form of society, upward to higher reaches of ethics.
 

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The type of people who debate along those lines don't really care what the answer is. They fundamentally disagree with vegetarianism and they are grasping at straws trying to find a justification for their meat-eating. People are naturally opposed to change. They tend to reject difference. They are threatened by any disruption in the status quo.<br><br><br><br>
The trick to debating these people, if you so choose, is to reframe the discussion. Instead of answering his question, ask "Don't you want to do what is right for your body, the environment, and animals today instead of living in the past?"
 

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I agree with Elaine. And the first answer, if you must respond. I wouldn't feed the trolls, though.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks a lot, troub. That's definitely some gold material to use there. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/thumbsup.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":up:"> I actually raised the point about slavery before, to which he responded:<br><br><br><br><div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">That is just retarded. Slavery didn't evolve us from rodents, moron. Slavery was a shortcut, and a very tragic one. Being omnivorous was not a shortcut, it was a necessity. The craving for meat is built in our genes. The majority of us cannot shut it off. Ethics have nothing to do with it. Please think before making those kind of statements.</div>
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And I will most likely pull out of the debate once it becomes redundant.
 

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Wayne_D, it looks like you're up against someone who argues minutiae just for the sake of arguing. This is a common practice amongst colossal nitwits. Ok, so the best strategy for you is to avoid specifics. Come up with a broad, irrefutable statement that he can't pick apart by arguing stupid stuff like history, semantics or "science".<br><br><br><br>
Here's the statement I would make:<br><br><br><br>
Evolution is defined by an oranism's ability to <i>change</i> from the ways of its predecessors. Those who cling to the traditions of their savage ancestors are opposing evolution. They are espousing what is known as "inertia".<br><br><br><br>
Next I'd back it up with one simple analogy:<br><br><br><br>
The very first prehistoric slime who crawled out of the ocean didn't give a rat's hiney what the "norm" was. It simply saw an alternate path, believed in it, and went with it. I imagine the prehistoric slime's little friends argued just as furiously as your carnivore buddy. And well, they got left in the muck. Take your pick. Do you want to evolve, or do you want to be a prehistoric slime? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/shocked.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":eek:">
 

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Where are you having this debate?<br><br><br><br>
That person seems to be engaging in basic rationalizations: coming up with bizarre justification for something after the fact. It doesn't seem like that person will be able to process the issue honestly.
 

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Wayne.<br><br><br><br>
Your interlocuter's argument doesn't stack up. Here are a few rejoinders:<br><br><br><br>
1. If you accept the hunter-gather hypothesis, then factory farm production <i>is</i> turning our backs on our heritage. Gethere-hunters, when they ate meat - much more infrequently than us - certainly didn't pump animals full of antibiotics, etc. So if your interlocuter isn't abstaining from factory farmed meat than he is disingenous on his own terms.<br><br><br><br>
2. We have 'turned our backs' on much of our heritage: living in caves, wiping our noses on table cloths, defecation in bushes, etc. Plus (in certain contexts) polygymy, andrygymy, slavery, 'divine right of kings', execution for sodomy, etc, etc. The problem is, where are we to 'pinpoint' ourselves in history and in culture and say that that is 'the natural man'?<br><br><br><br>
The whole point of being human, what makes us 'special', is that we can move beyond the ethics and behaviour of cavemen. On one hand, the person you are debating with wants to reverse civilisation. But then, on the other( strangely!) he only seems concerned with diet. You could respond, next time you use the toilet, use a leaf. This forces him to acknowledge that culture (i.e toilet paper!) has influenced 'nature' to the point that we can no longer see a disparity- we are not 'natural beings'. It is the same with diet. It cannot help but change. We are no longer cavemen. We are no longer living in bushes.<br><br><br><br>
His argument is a cop out. Pretty much anything can be justified by refering to our 'primitive state'.<br><br><br><br>
PS: I would agree with the above. Ask yourself, what is the point in having the debate? Truth be told, the person you are responding to is NO WHERE near as interested as you. You are taking the issue seriuosly. His is just a reflex dismissal. Chances are , you won't change his mind ( he'll just start shouting at you before you have any chance to - defense mechanism).<br><br><br><br>
I've been drawn into countless online drebates that are of the poor standard your interlocuter wants. Sometimes it is better to just say, screw it, and phone a friend up instead, go for a walk, etc. Life's too short to waste it in online sparring matches with the uninterested/ignorant.
 
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