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Thread: Vegetarianism

  1. #71
    Emperor/Dictator kyuuei's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Amargith View Post
    Well, I can see the argument for 'quality of food'. It's a luxury we nowadays have and we shouldn't forget this wasn't always the case. But sure, wastefulness is not something to endorse either. I see no problem with some parts being 'for the dog or pig' if they are more suited to being able to digest something as that too would still be useful and not wasteful in that respect. Throwing however oodles of food away (as we do in Belgium for instance - the infamous 'Butter Mountain') because otherwise you loose your subsidies from the government if you don't make it yet there is no demand for it...that's insane. Especially with people starving in this world.

    Personally, the aspect that I especially was going for in that remark was...the respect for the animal - both by not wasting its sacrifice AND in the way in which it gets to live its life and is put down for our benefit.

    Regardless, we fail at all of the above as a society - in the most profound way possible.
    I think we absolutely massively fail. But I don't understand the logical leap into the realm of veganism/vegetarianism for the sake of dishonor to the animals. Whereas some people say "I dislike how they are treating animals prior to the death" there are plenty of small farms where chickens, cows, pigs, etc. are all humanely treated and you can visit those farms/areas yourself to get those products. I think a simple shift into the realm of small, local farms, and/or larger ranches that have humane practices that fall in line with moral tendencies. I get the "I can't eat a thing breathing once" (sort of--plants are totally living, and many people are more attached to their plants/gardens than they are people) But I don't understand the extreme swing into the other direction just because there are bad people and apathetic people out there.

    Quote Originally Posted by skylights View Post
    @kyuuei, I agree with you about using the whole animal, and I am right on with what @Amargith said about the Native American ideology, too. It is also weird to me that we shun eating a lot of parts. I mean, I'm not really feeling eating eyeballs because ew, texture, but why not eat the rest of it?

    It also strikes me that if we kept better animal living conditions, there would be less concern about disease and infection overall. And it would eliminate a lot of environmental concerns... here in the South where I live, pig farms are notorious for their toxicity and the way they wreak havoc on the environment if there are floods.
    This is what I ask too. Why did those parts originally get classified as "for dogs"? Was it because we lacked modern technology (like having ovens in every house with meat thermometers and such) to avoid disease in those parts of the animal? Or because it just serves a better purpose to provide nutrition for the dogs/pigs? I'm unsure of the origins of those thought processes.

    There is a catch-22 with farming. More antibiotics/immunizations helps protect the livestock, decreases incidence of broad-spectrum infections, and having bigger productions means more inspections, etc. Smaller farms won't feed the same massive amount of people as we have now, but they will isolate the livestock more to (hopefully) avoid the infections. On the other hand.. all of those antibiotics and hormones are clearly affecting the food and the people consuming it, and it's allowing room for conditions that would be hazardous to the animals otherwise (lots of anything in a small space is bad health news), and the quality of food is less than with small local farming--and so is the price.

    I'm not exactly sure what the right answers are.. but I've been doing a lot of thinking on the issue. I know there is a morality I do tie with food, that I've only recently even had time in my life to think about, and going about it in the best way possible is something I've been trying to determine for a little while now.
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  2. #72
    The High Priestess Amargith's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kyuuei View Post
    I think we absolutely massively fail. But I don't understand the logical leap into the realm of veganism/vegetarianism for the sake of dishonor to the animals. Whereas some people say "I dislike how they are treating animals prior to the death" there are plenty of small farms where chickens, cows, pigs, etc. are all humanely treated and you can visit those farms/areas yourself to get those products. I think a simple shift into the realm of small, local farms, and/or larger ranches that have humane practices that fall in line with moral tendencies. I get the "I can't eat a thing breathing once" (sort of--plants are totally living, and many people are more attached to their plants/gardens than they are people) But I don't understand the extreme swing into the other direction just because there are bad people and apathetic people out there.
    Coz what you believe to be true is...in fact false. Or rather, not up to the standard I believe it has to be. At present, in our society, it isn't economically viable to actually keep those animals in the way they ought to be kept in order to live a proper life. I'm not saying this as a bright-eyed idealist; this is the animal behaviourist talking. Although those places are definitely a step in the right direction, cows are still being forcefully impregnated and their calves still dragged away the second they get born because they'll 'steal' milk - and trust me, the mother cow definitely puts up a fight when that happens. They're still milked till their nipples are raw and often not treated because 'antibiotics cannot be used when going organic or should be shunned.' Pigs are neutered without anaesthesia because it's too costly to anaesthetise an animal of that size and drugs in the meat aren't appreciated in the meat. Chickens are kept in enclosures that are free range, for sure, but are populated with so many chickens that turf wars cause chronic stress and non-stop fighting and picking at each other because it is the *only* way to make it economically viable. Often, there is more disease as well since there are so many chickens on top of each other. And guess what is cheaper - treating chickens or just tossing 'em?

    Again, it's better than them getting their beaks removed and stuck in a cage with no way to even dust-bathe - a prime need for any chicken and one they'll actually make up for in lost time once they get a chance as it is that big of a drive; even in naked chickens without feathers to dust-bathe. It is better than having calves stacked on top of each other in the dark to keep their meat anemic as the consumer prefers white meat. But not nearly up to where we should be, sorry.

    At this point, the only time I'd be ok with eating eggs if I took a class at my old school for animal behaviourism (they have a chicken one, believe it or not) and keep my own couple of chickens so I *KNOW* beyond a shadow of a doubt that they have what they need and are cared for as they *should* be.

    I admire the changes that those in the sector concerned with this are taking. I applaud them. They're still not good enough and if I can cast vote against this kind of slavery with my money, I will.


    AS for plants, I am guessing that will be the next battle - though some of it is already taking place. But for now, even understanding different species of mammal and their needs is proven to be quite a challenge. I hope that one day, we'll get to the point where we can understand how to live in harmony with plants. Baby steps though. For now, I stick to organically and mostly locally grown fruit and vegetables as that is how far our current knowledge as to what they need to thrive and not suffer in life goes. 50 years ago we had no clue that animals could have feelings - these days, the studies are showing that though they work differently than ours, we all share the potential for pain and suffering. Hopefully we'll soon know how that works for plants as well and adjust our practices accordingly.
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  3. #73
    Male johnnyyukon's Avatar
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    I know a thing or two about vegetarianism. Once when I was in Dallas, I had a salad.
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    Strongly Ambivalent Ivy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Amargith View Post
    Coz what you believe to be true is...in fact false. Or rather, not up to the standard I believe it has to be. At present, in our society, it isn't economically viable to actually keep those animals in the way they ought to be kept in order to live a proper life. I'm not saying this as a bright-eyed idealist; this is the animal behaviourist talking. Although those places are definitely a step in the right direction, cows are still being forcefully impregnated and their calves still dragged away the second they get born because they'll 'steal' milk - and trust me, the mother cow definitely puts up a fight when that happens. They're still milked till their nipples are raw and often not treated because 'antibiotics cannot be used when going organic or should be shunned.' Pigs are neutered without anaesthesia because it's too costly to anaesthetise an animal of that size and drugs in the meat aren't appreciated in the meat. Chickens are kept in enclosures that are free range, for sure, but are populated with so many chickens that turf wars cause chronic stress and non-stop fighting and picking at each other because it is the *only* way to make it economically viable. Often, there is more disease as well since there are so many chickens on top of each other. And guess what is cheaper - treating chickens or just tossing 'em?

    Again, it's better than them getting their beaks removed and stuck in a cage with no way to even dust-bathe - a prime need for any chicken and one they'll actually make up for in lost time once they get a chance as it is that big of a drive; even in naked chickens without feathers to dust-bathe. It is better than having calves stacked on top of each other in the dark to keep their meat anemic as the consumer prefers white meat. But not nearly up to where we should be, sorry.

    At this point, the only time I'd be ok with eating eggs if I took a class at my old school for animal behaviourism (they have a chicken one, believe it or not) and keep my own couple of chickens so I *KNOW* beyond a shadow of a doubt that they have what they need and are cared for as they *should* be.

    I admire the changes that those in the sector concerned with this are taking. I applaud them. They're still not good enough and if I can cast vote against this kind of slavery with my money, I will.


    AS for plants, I am guessing that will be the next battle - though some of it is already taking place. But for now, even understanding different species of mammal and their needs is proven to be quite a challenge. I hope that one day, we'll get to the point where we can understand how to live in harmony with plants. Baby steps though. For now, I stick to organically and mostly locally grown fruit and vegetables as that is how far our current knowledge as to what they need to thrive and not suffer in life goes. 50 years ago we had no clue that animals could have feelings - these days, the studies are showing that though they work differently than ours, we all share the potential for pain and suffering. Hopefully we'll soon know how that works for plants as well and adjust our practices accordingly.
    I agree with you about factory farming, even organic factory farming, but that doesn't sound like the small local farms we get our meat/dairy/eggs from. There's a thing here called Farm Tour which is exactly what it sounds like- a tour of the local farms where people get their meat, milk, and eggs. I was satisfied with the humane treatment the animals were getting there and their living conditions (and stuff like living conditions/infrastructure aren't the kinds of things they can really fake for Farm Tour). My kids have even worked on one of the farms at a summer camp and helped cared for the animals themselves. We have a thriving hippie subculture here and I think they really demand that kind of thing. I wish it were more widely practiced.

  5. #75
    The High Priestess Amargith's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ivy View Post
    I agree with you about factory farming, even organic factory farming, but that doesn't sound like the small local farms we get our meat/dairy/eggs from. There's a thing here called Farm Tour which is exactly what it sounds like- a tour of the local farms where people get their meat, milk, and eggs. I was satisfied with the humane treatment the animals were getting there and their living conditions (and stuff like living conditions/infrastructure aren't the kinds of things they can really fake for Farm Tour). My kids have even worked on one of the farms at a summer camp and helped cared for the animals themselves. We have a thriving hippie subculture here and I think they really demand that kind of thing. I wish it were more widely practiced.
    That sounds amazing. I wish this was the standard all farms had to be up to. But as that isn't the current mindset in society and there is little to zero control on the actual welfare of these animals - for that matter, most of the time the 'standards' of any inspections are laughable wrt to what the species *actually* needs to have the farm considered cruelty-free - it just isn't something I'm willing to trust to others atm. I'd love to take a tour though at that farm and be proven wrong coz that would be an amazing glimpse of the future I long to facilitate. And to see how they make it economically viable in this day and age, for that matter.

    For now though, going vegan seems to be the only viable option to me - if only to take a stand.
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  6. #76
    Strongly Ambivalent Ivy's Avatar
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    "Economically viable" is debatable- the products are pretty expensive. If we ate more meat it could be prohibitively expensive for us even though we are fairly comfortable, but we do what we can live with and afford which means we eat meat less often. For me, protein levels are really paramount- my health and wellbeing really depends on getting enough protein. It doesn't have to be from animal sources, but I like the variety of having meat/dairy/eggs as options in addition to beans, quinoa, tofu, seitan, hemp powder, etc.

  7. #77
    Male johnnyyukon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kyuuei View Post
    My stomach was frequently upset
    That's because you're a Valkyrie Warrior, and they are allergic to vegetables, and rejuvenated by meat mana.
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  8. #78
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    Quote Originally Posted by kyuuei View Post
    This is what I ask too. Why did those parts originally get classified as "for dogs"? Was it because we lacked modern technology (like having ovens in every house with meat thermometers and such) to avoid disease in those parts of the animal? Or because it just serves a better purpose to provide nutrition for the dogs/pigs? I'm unsure of the origins of those thought processes.

    There is a catch-22 with farming. More antibiotics/immunizations helps protect the livestock, decreases incidence of broad-spectrum infections, and having bigger productions means more inspections, etc. Smaller farms won't feed the same massive amount of people as we have now, but they will isolate the livestock more to (hopefully) avoid the infections. On the other hand.. all of those antibiotics and hormones are clearly affecting the food and the people consuming it, and it's allowing room for conditions that would be hazardous to the animals otherwise (lots of anything in a small space is bad health news), and the quality of food is less than with small local farming--and so is the price.

    I'm not exactly sure what the right answers are.. but I've been doing a lot of thinking on the issue. I know there is a morality I do tie with food, that I've only recently even had time in my life to think about, and going about it in the best way possible is something I've been trying to determine for a little while now.
    I think small, local farms is definitely one of the answers. But the economic thing is such a tie-up. Idealistically, I'd totally trade money to eat morally right. Realistically, I know it's hard, and I know the world doesn't revolve on ideals.

  9. #79
    The Unwieldy Clawed One Falcarius's Avatar
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    Falcarius has been a vegetarian pretty much his whole life; originally because he did not like the taste of red meat but now more for animal welfare reasons. While in theory he would like to be a vegan, he is not a vegan as being a vegan and staying healthy is awkward.
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    I dearly love the taste of red meat and I will surely eat a steak if you take me to a steakhouse, but that happens once or twice a year. I don't buy it to cook at home. So my diet is mostly ovo-lacto vegetarian with some chicken tendencies (even though the plight of chickens makes me cry). I'm not het up about it, though. I will eat what's put in front of me at a friend's house or social gathering. I don't label myself to anyone with regard to what I eat.

    I have one vegan friend who it's all she talks about, and this gets tiresome quickly. Another friend who's veg and fine with whatever anyone else wants to do. I let her choose the restaurants and we end up eating lots of yummy ethnic food = happy me. She is often forgotten at work, though, and it's a sore spot, when they have lunches and meetings catered. Nobody thinks to order a plain cheese pizza, etc.

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