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  1. #61
    Senior Member Qre:us's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kyrielle View Post
    If an animal is in obvious pain or trouble, I try to do something about it. If small, slow animals are in the road, I move them out of the road if possible. A few animals that people are afraid of are animals I will happily allow to live in proximity of my home because I know we will both benefit from doing so. (For example, if a rat snake decided to live under the deck, I would not hurt it or chase it out. The rat snake cuts down on any rodents that might cause problems for me and keeps the snake fed and sheltered. I've been known to let spiders live in the house because they will eat earwigs and roaches.)



    I'm not. I have no qualms about eating meat. Though I feel awful for the autrocities that many of our food animals go through.



    Generally, no. Not because of a principle, though.



    Have I? Yes. Do I do so usually? No. Whether or not I kill it depends on the species of bug.



    Do I think of them? Yes. I feel badly for wild animals kept in captivity, though I understand some of them cannot be released because of their strong imprint on human beings (because they were orphaned and raised by people, for instance). Zoos and aquariums tug at my heartstrings. At the same time, I understand how important it is to teach people about these animals so they are respectful for their brethren in the wild.

    I don't condone hunting for sport and fish that are not intended to be eaten should be released. However, I fully condone hunting and fishing as a means of providing food for yourself and your family.

    As for animals in pet stores that are not taken care of properly, puppy/kitten mills, while I want to "rescue" them, I know that that is not the way to get this behavior and business to stop. In order to stop this sort of thing, there needs to be boycott so these people cannot continue their business and reporting to the appropriate authorities.



    I keep fish. Never more than should properly fit in the tank.



    Yes.



    I don't know what to say for these animals. On the one hand, we use these animals to help save other human beings or gain a greater understanding of ourselves and other animals. On the other hand, I feel bad that these test animals are likely subjected to experiments that cause them considerable stress and sometimes pain.
    Thank you for taking the time to address all those specific questions. It's rare we ever think about our inaction in certain areas of life, at least most people, so it's enlightening when people consider not only why they do what they do, but, why they don't do what they don't do. The latter is my inquiry for this topic. Most people's response is, well, it's cuz I don't do 'em, and they stop their thought there. So, thanks for that exercise in exploration.

    I don't have any justification other than: my species > any other species.
    The thing is, relativism. This comparison is not an objective absolute. You spoke earlier of having a dog, and I clicked on your profile, cute pup. So, for you, in some instances, other species> my species. But one word that you hit on, is insightful, I think, 'my'. What is mine, important to me > others. In this case, your dog is your own, feeding it, loving it, giving it shelter overrides, say, helping someone of your own species, say, across the oceans who may need the same things you provide for your dog.

    Hence, my earlier question to you, me, us all:
    Quote Originally Posted by Qre:us View Post
    Is it merely a question of conscious selfishness on the part of us humans?

  2. #62
    Senior Member Kyrielle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Qre:us View Post
    The thing is, relativism. This comparison is not an objective absolute. You spoke earlier of having a dog, and I clicked on your profile, cute pup. So, for you, in some instances, other species> my species. But one word that you hit on, is insightful, I think, 'my'. What is mine, important to me > others. In this case, your dog is your own, feeding it, loving it, giving it shelter overrides, say, helping someone of your own species, say, across the oceans who may need the same things you provide for your dog.

    Hence, my earlier question to you, me, us all:
    Why yes, you definitely have hit the nail on the head. It likely is that we treat certain animals the way we do simply because we can, desire to, or derive some kind of benefit from doing so.

    It's largely true that we care about that which is important to us over other things that we don't know about or are unimportant to us. And you're right, I'd probably go to save my dog over some random person on the street simply because the dog is more important to me than that random person.
    "I took the one less traveled by,
    And that has made all the difference."

    Robert Frost

  3. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kyrielle View Post
    I don't have any justification other than: my species > any other species.
    Just like Aryan > Jew......

    Another cool quote: "The animals of the world exist for their own reasons. They were not made for humans any more than black people were made for whites or women for men." - Alice Walker

    Anyway, I can understand stupid people eating factory farmed meat and dairy, but what I have a hard time grasping is why compassionate, intelligent people also do. If you are going to put your stomach's desires above the life of another, at least have the decency to buy free-range meat and dairy. It isn't hard.

  4. #64
    Senior Member Kyrielle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Edasich View Post
    Just like Aryan > Jew......
    I know, that's totally what I meant when I said that. Thanks for catching my mistake! :rolli:


    Quote Originally Posted by Edasich View Post
    Anyway, I can understand stupid people eating factory farmed meat and dairy, but what I have a hard time grasping is why compassionate, intelligent people also do. If you are going to put your stomach's desires above the life of another, at least have the decency to buy free-range meat and dairy. It isn't hard.
    Because farmed meat and dairy are cheaper and more available than free-range foods. That would probably be why. Or they're lazy. Or their compassion and intelligence does not outweigh the desire to eat dairy/meat products. Perhaps, if, everyday, one were faced with watching their food be raised before them in factory farmed conditions, then more people would change their perspectives. But, like most gruesome things in this time, these situations are out of sight, out of mind for 99% of the public and it's easy to not even give the matter much thought when shopping at the grocery store.
    "I took the one less traveled by,
    And that has made all the difference."

    Robert Frost

  5. #65
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    I believe they do. Don't like thinking about it. One of the reasons I became a vegetarian.
    Om–ba–ara–minaya–sabaha
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  6. #66
    Une Femme est une femme paperoceans's Avatar
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    Of course they do.

    Kind of OT... but this reminds me of a parrot that was taught how to communicate with humans. Basic things like colors, asking for basic things like food, etc. But when it's caretaker started teaching another bird how to talk, the parrot would blurt out the wrong answers on purpose to trick the other bird. Probably a mixture of jealousy and just plain rivalry. It's strange because humans do the same.

    IDK I just thought that it was so fascinating when I read about it last year. I think she taught it how to read also... I wish that I could find the article.
    Between that cigarillo and sticking my finger down my throat to see if I could DT, I feel like puking RN.

    Read my Blog.

  7. #67
    Senior Member Qre:us's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by paperoceans View Post
    Of course they do.

    Anyway, kind of OT but this reminds me of the parrot that a scientist (was it?) taught how to talk... and I mean talk. Like told her when it was hungry, left comments, etc. She taught him colors and other things. When she started teaching another bird, the parrot would blurt out the wrong answers on purpose to trick the other bird. Probably a mixture of jealousy and just plain rivalry. It's strange because humans do the same.

    IDK I just thought that it was so fascinating when I read about it last year.
    Alex, he passed away. It's a cute and read:
    Think Animals Don't Think Like Us? Think Again | Animal Intelligence | DISCOVER Magazine

    An excerpt:
    Alex was a little subdued that week, though nothing out of the ordinary. The birds had had some kind of infection the previous month, but they were now fine. The vet had given them all a clean bill of health. On the afternoon of Wednesday the fifth, Adena Schachner joined me and Alex in the lab. She is a graduate student in the psychology department at Harvard, researching the origins of musical abilities. We thought it would be interesting to do some work with Alex. That evening, we wanted to see what types of music engaged him. Adena played some eighties disco, and Alex had a good time, bobbing his head in time with the beat. Adena and I danced to some of the songs while Alex bobbed along with us. Next time, we promised ourselves, we would get more serious about the music work.

    The following day, Thursday the sixth, Alex wasn’t much interested in working on phonemes with two of the students during the morning session. “Alex very uncooperative in the task. Turned around,” they wrote in Alex’s work log. By midafternoon he was much more engaged, this time with a simple task of correctly selecting a colored cup, underneath which was a nut.

    At six forty-five the supplemental lights went on, as usual, a signal that we had a few minutes left to clean up. Then the main lights went off, and it was time to put the birds in their cages: Wart first, then Alex, then the always reluctant Griffin.

    “You be good. I love you,” Alex said to me.

    “I love you, too,” I replied.

    “You’ll be in tomorrow?”

    “Yes,” I said, “I’ll be in tomorrow.”

    [...]The following morning, after checking my e-mail, I poured myself a cup of coffee. While I was savoring the coffee’s rich aroma, a thought crossed my mind, as it did from time to time, something that my friend Jeannie once said: Had I gotten a different Grey parrot that day back in 1977, Alex might have spent his life, unknown and unheralded, in someone’s spare bedroom. I didn’t, of course, and here we were with a history of astonishing achievements behind us, and poised to journey to the next horizon and beyond in our work together. And we had the resources we needed. I allowed myself to savor all this, too, a sense of happiness, excitement, and security that had eluded me since the heady days at the Media Lab. Yes! I then returned to my computer.

    In the interim, another e-mail had arrived. In the subject line was a single word: “Sadness.” My blood turned to ice as I read the message. “I’m saddened to report that one of the parrots was found dead in the bottom of his cage this morning when Jose went to clean the room...not sure which?...in the back left corner of the room.” It was from K.C. Hayes, the chief veterinarian in the animal care facility at Brandeis University.

    I was in raw panic. No...no...no! Back left corner of the room. That’s Alex’s cage! I was gasping for breath, trying to stave off rising terror. Maybe he’s mixing up his right and his left. Maybe he made a mistake. Maybe it’s not Alex. It can’t be Alex! Even though I clung to that feeble hope as I snatched at the phone, I knew K.C. had not made a mistake. I knew Alex was dead. Even before I could dial, a second e-mail from K.C. chimed onto the screen. The message was simple. “I’m afraid it is Alex.”

    [...]

    I wanted to remember the Alex I’d put in the cage the previous night. Alex, full of life and mischief. Alex, who had been my friend and colleague for so many years. Alex, who had amazed the world of science, doing so many things he was not supposed to be able to do. Now he had died when he was not supposed to, two decades before the end of his expected life span. Damn you, Alex.

    I wanted to remember the Alex whose last words to me were, “You be good. I love you.”

    I stood, put my hand on the door, and whispered, “Goodbye, little friend.”

    Scientifically speaking, the single greatest lesson Alex taught me, taught all of us, is that animal minds are a great deal more like human minds than the vast majority of behavioral scientists believed—or, more importantly, were even prepared to concede might be remotely possible. Now, I am not saying that animals are miniature humans with somewhat lower-octane mental powers, although when Alex strutted around the lab and gave orders to all and sundry, he gave the appearance of being a feathery Napoleon. Yet animals are far more than the mindless automatons that mainstream science held them to be for so long. Alex taught us how little we know about animal minds and how much more there is to discover. This insight has profound implications, philosophically, sociologically, and practically. It affects our view of the species Homo sapiens and its place in nature.

    [...]

  8. #68
    Senior Member Qre:us's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JocktheMotie View Post
    These questions assume that having emotions equates to giving an animal special value in that it becomes wrong for it to die by our hands. I don't see how that is the case. And to be honest, I don't really see what you're trying to do here. Yes, you've gotten us to admit that animals probably have emotions, and that they are not unique to humanity. How does that make it necessary to reexamine how we use them?
    Dude, after our Vent convo, it's been bugging me how to try and translate to you, how 'ethics' can be more palatable to you in this regard.

    And, I thought of one way (dunno if it will work), but from an NT you admire, and one I admire, to you, buddy:

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p86BPM1GV8M]Pale Blue Dot[/youtube]


    Look again at that dot. That's here. That's home. That's us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every "superstar," every "supreme leader," every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there – on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.

    The Earth is a very small stage in a vast cosmic arena. Think of the rivers of blood spilled by all those generals and emperors so that, in glory and triumph, they could become the momentary masters of a fraction of a dot. Think of the endless cruelties visited by the inhabitants of one corner of this pixel on the scarcely distinguishable inhabitants of some other corner, how frequent their misunderstandings, how eager they are to kill one another, how fervent their hatreds.

    Our posturings, our imagined self-importance, the delusion that we have some privileged position in the Universe, are challenged by this point of pale light. Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark. In our obscurity, in all this vastness, there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves.

    The Earth is the only world known so far to harbor life. There is nowhere else, at least in the near future, to which our species could migrate. Visit, yes. Settle, not yet. Like it or not, for the moment the Earth is where we make our stand.

    It has been said that astronomy is a humbling and character-building experience. There is perhaps no better demonstration of the folly of human conceits than this distant image of our tiny world. To me, it underscores our responsibility to deal more kindly with one another, and to preserve and cherish the pale blue dot, the only home we've ever known.
    Animals, trees, humans, we're a finely balanced ecosystem called earth. We need each other, directly or indirectly, to preserve this balance, hence, each other. Understand, not destroy one another. Top of the food chain becomes obsolete when the links get broken, one by one from the base up. We won't have anything left to stand on. The power of the human mind (hence, our abilities) is our greatest gift, and thus, our greatest responsibility as well as our greatest burden. /spider-sagan

  9. #69
    Senior Member Feops's Avatar
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    Animals most certainly have emotions, but I think they scale relative to intelligence and social interaction. I somewhat doubt worms and bugs become depressed. But my cat has moods.

    I wonder then if the human capacity of emotions has room for growth. Would it be possible that, a million years from now, humans will look upon our generation as only having a basic grasp of awareness?

  10. #70
    Senior Member tinkerbell's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Qre:us View Post
    Huh? Sorry, I couldn't understand what you meant by that. Can you expand?



    So is it social pressure that's the trigger, or animals in pain that drives social pressure? What's the cause?


    Why do you not feel morally obligated about animals? Simply because you aren't a pet owner?

    Scientists/vivisectionist get crap from people who are animal lovers. It's this social pressure that created the need for laws on dealing with animals and other anti cruelty laws.


    I don't feel morally oblived because I don't practice animal crueltly directly, I feel more compasionate towards human beings.

    As for your insesant requirement for the minutia, I'm sorry I just can't be doing with it. Sorry I'm find overly minute details discussion frustrating and annoying and draining so I'll but out now...

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