Today I’m going to talk a bit about the ethical reasons to go vegetarian. I went vegetarian for ethical reasons, personally, so this is a reason that is very close to my heart. I believe all animals are equal to humans and even if they weren’t, it would then seem even worse that we kill them to eat them as that is just taking advantage of them.
Around 10 billion animals are killed every year just for human consumption. These are animals that have been bred to die. They are usually (unless free-range) kept in small cages or pens and given little to no grazing time. They are also usually overfed and exposed to pesticides and antibiotics. These animals do no not live a happy of full life. They also usually are not treated very humanely as farm animals do not normally fall under the humane treatment of animal laws and in most countries it is even explicitly stated that these laws do not apply to farm animals; this leaves the door wide open for abuse and misconduct. Either way, no matter how humanely an animal is treated, killing a helpless creature for something that tastes good just seems wrong. By going vegetarian, you can save over 100 animals a year.
Chickens are usually kept overcrowded in tiny cages and do not even have enough space to turn around, they also never even see the light of day. Veal comes from baby cows who are tied on a short leash to posts so that they can’t walk around and develop their muscles and therefore stay tender. Pigs are kept in dirty pens and overfed, they develop diseases and sores from being in their cramped environments.
Animals care about each other as well, but are forcibly removed from their families. Mothers do not get a chance to properly raise and nurse their babies. People who argue that animals do not form relationships, have emotions or feelings have done little research. Cows have best friends and get sad when they are separated. Chickens wait outside each other’s houses and have a social hierarchy. Pigs are more intelligent than dogs and respond to their names as well as sing songs while nursing their babies. Look at how happy these cows are after being saved from the slaughterhouse:
Animals also feel fear. Animals care just as much about their lives as humans do. Animals don’t want to suffer. Animals cannot speak for themselves so we must be their voice.
This next video is the video that I stumbled across on YouTube at the beginning of 2009. This is what made me become vegetarian. It is not the most overly convincing or most amazing video in the world but I think it says just enough to make people open their eyes. In this day and age there is no NEED to eat meat. Why do we insist on choosing our trivial wants over their basic need to live?
Warning: This video is slightly graphic in some parts.
For further information and a look at where I got some of my information, check out this site: http://www.peta.org/living/food/vegetarian-101/