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Vegetarianism: Hippie Fad or Part of the Culture of Life? - Printable Version

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Vegetarianism: Hippie Fad or Part of the Culture of Life? - Pilgrim - 06-16-2009

I just finished reading Mary Eberstadt's essay in the latest issue of First Things.  It concerns the potential for links between the pro-life cause and vegetarianism/veganism.  I though that it might make for a fruitful (if you'll pardon the pun) discussion...

Here's a link to the article:  http://www.firstthings.com/article/2009/05/pro-animal-pro-life-1243228870

:safe:


Re: Vegetarianism: Hippie Fad or Part of the Culture of Life? - matthew_talbot - 06-16-2009

Among the more ridiculous assertions in this quasi -intellectual silliness is the following paragraph:

"My purpose in untangling these distinctions is not to put anyone in the moral dock, whether vegetarian or carnivore. It is rather to point out something easily overlooked—that there is more common moral ground between vegetarians and people concerned with the life issues than either side seems to realize."

Any commonality between these issues is stopped cold in it's tracts by the fact that although humans and animals (and vegtables, for that matter) all have souls, only human souls are meant to enjoy everlasting happiness in Heaven with God. We are made in his image and likeness. Animals are not.

The following quote is from a source that I cite on this forum often: Radio Replies: (Volume 3, question 52):

" All justice that is in the moral order, presupposes the violation of rights by morally responsible subjects. Animals do not possess reason, and cannot refer their actions to moral standards which they know to be imposed upon them by their Creator. And if animals have no personal rights to be violated, there can be no question of injustice towards them."

All volumes of Radio Replies have an  imprimatur.


Re: Vegetarianism: Hippie Fad or Part of the Culture of Life? - Historian - 06-16-2009

(06-16-2009, 02:33 PM)Pilgrim Wrote: I just finished reading Mary Eberstadt's essay in the latest issue of First Things.  It concerns the potential for links between the pro-life cause and vegetarianism/veganism.  I though that it might make for a fruitful (if you'll pardon the pun) discussion...

Here's a link to the article:  http://www.firstthings.com/article/2009/05/pro-animal-pro-life-1243228870

:safe:

I'm a vegan, and it is just a way of eating. It isn't a "fad" any more than any other way of eating goes.

There is no connection between veganism and being pro-life.

I stopped reading after seeing:
Quote:Why aren't vegetarians and pro-lifers more closely aligned?

Yes, this is  the first sentence, but it is like asking "Why aren't XBox fans and NFL fans more closely aligned?". It is a meaningless question which ignores the nature of both parties.


Re: Vegetarianism: Hippie Fad or Part of the Culture of Life? - Iuvenalis - 06-17-2009

(06-16-2009, 02:52 PM)matthew_talbot Wrote: " All justice that is in the moral order, presupposes the violation of rights by morally responsible subjects. Animals do not possess reason, and cannot refer their actions to moral standards which they know to be imposed upon them by their Creator. And if animals have no personal rights to be violated, there can be no question of injustice towards them."

I agree with the conclusion, but I'm not sure about how it was arrived at.

I understand Radio Replies have an Imprimatur (funny how that means "let it be printed" and it's a radio message :) but I digress), but the particular phrasing that "there can be no question of injustice towards them" (animals) and that "they have no personal right to be violated" seems to provide for animal cruelty, or rather render it a semantic impossibility.

That can't possibly be conscienced, St. Francis would surely have something to add on that, at least.

This quote is, at the very least, incomplete(?).


Re: Vegetarianism: Hippie Fad or Part of the Culture of Life? - Iuvenalis - 06-17-2009

(06-16-2009, 03:16 PM)Rosarium Wrote: I'm a vegan, and it is just a way of eating. It isn't a "fad" any more than any other way of eating goes.

I've always meant to ask you about this. As I understand it, you're a 'naturalist' (although you seem to use that word in an atypical, possibly re-defined way, at least as it is usually referred to in philosophy of science.), and your veganism is more an outgrowth of that 'ideology' you hold, rather than the usual reasons for veganism e.g. health, ethics/animal rights, some sort of misguided environmentalism, etc.?

Sound about right?

Have you expounded on your philosophe in an another thread already? Or a blog? I'd like to understand this. Feel free to use the PM facility as well so as not to hijack this thread.


Re: Vegetarianism: Hippie Fad or Part of the Culture of Life? - matthew_talbot - 06-17-2009

(06-17-2009, 04:16 AM)Iuvenalis Wrote:
(06-16-2009, 02:52 PM)matthew_talbot Wrote: " All justice that is in the moral order, presupposes the violation of rights by morally responsible subjects. Animals do not possess reason, and cannot refer their actions to moral standards which they know to be imposed upon them by their Creator. And if animals have no personal rights to be violated, there can be no question of injustice towards them."

I agree with the conclusion, but I'm not sure about how it was arrived at.

I understand Radio Replies have an Imprimatur (funny how that means "let it be printed" and it's a radio message :) but I digress), but the particular phrasing that "there can be no question of injustice towards them" (animals) and that "they have no personal right to be violated" seems to provide for animal cruelty, or rather render it a semantic impossibility.

That can't possibly be conscienced, St. Francis would surely have something to add on that, at least.

This quote is, at the very least, incomplete(?).


Radio Replies is a three volume apologetic resource in print form also. It was not just a radio program.


Animals not having rights in no way negates our responsibility to not inflict cruelty on them. I think you are confusing "injustice" with "cruelty." They are entirely separate things. Justice implies them having recourse to remedy an injustice they have suffered. The preceding quote addresses this.

The O.P was providing a link to an article that was attempting to correlate abortion and cruelty to animals. As has been pointed out, no such corellation exists, due to the reasons noted.

I'm not sure what you mean by "can't be conscienced (sic)." regarding St. Francis. Perhaps you could expound on that.



Re: Vegetarianism: Hippie Fad or Part of the Culture of Life? - geogeer - 06-17-2009

Unfortunately the thought process that comes out of this thinking is that animal life is equal to human life.

http://www.worldnetdaily.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=101349


Re: Vegetarianism: Hippie Fad or Part of the Culture of Life? - Pilgrim - 06-17-2009

(06-16-2009, 03:16 PM)Rosarium Wrote: I'm a vegan, and it is just a way of eating. It isn't a "fad" any more than any other way of eating goes.

There is no connection between veganism and being pro-life.

Rosarium,

I did not know that you were a vegan.  One of the points that Eberstadt makes in the article is that most vegetarians/vegans decide to adopt this "way of eating" for moral reasons.  May I ask why you became a vegan?


Re: Vegetarianism: Hippie Fad or Part of the Culture of Life? - Historian - 06-17-2009

(06-17-2009, 04:21 AM)Iuvenalis Wrote:
(06-16-2009, 03:16 PM)Rosarium Wrote: I'm a vegan, and it is just a way of eating. It isn't a "fad" any more than any other way of eating goes.

I've always meant to ask you about this. As I understand it, you're a 'naturalist' (although you seem to use that word in an atypical, possibly re-defined way, at least as it is usually referred to in philosophy of science.), and your veganism is more an outgrowth of that 'ideology' you hold, rather than the usual reasons for veganism e.g. health, ethics/animal rights, some sort of misguided environmentalism, etc.?

Sound about right?

Have you expounded on your philosophe in an another thread already? Or a blog? I'd like to understand this. Feel free to use the PM facility as well so as not to hijack this thread.

I wrote it out in more detail, but it is too long to post here (I explained my reasoning more in depth), so I'll post it somewhere else today. I'll probably open a blog for it. It would be handy for thoughts I wish to share which do not fit as an article on my site.


Re: Vegetarianism: Hippie Fad or Part of the Culture of Life? - salixbabylonica - 06-17-2009

I read Eberstadt's article some weeks ago, but to my recollection, it was unconvincing on the whole.  She does, however, make what I think is a very solid point - the logic leading most of these philosophical vegetarians to support animal rights should inexorably lead them to reject abortion.  Frankly, I don't see how anyone could possibly cringe at eating a chicken and find nothing objectionable about slaughtering a child.  Her very explanation of the origins of vegetarianism (of a certain type)* provides the answer to that very puzzle, although she does not, to my recollection, make the connection.  She highlights that most vegetarians of this sort come to their position by way of an emotional intuition.  In short, their position really is based on emotion, not logic.  Therefore, because they have positive emotions about cute little lambs and aborable chicks, they don't want these hurt.  But they raise not a finger, not a cry, in defense of the babies they do not see, and who "harm" those people they care about.

*Lest this be taken as giving offense, in no way should this be construed as an assertion that Rosarium's vegetarianism is due to emotion.  There are certainly non-crazy reasons for adopting a vegetarian diet, but there are a lot of crazy vegetarians out there, including in my own family.