How do Aethist think about veganism?
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02-05-2014, 06:43 PM
RE: How do Aethist think about veganism?
(02-05-2014 06:23 PM)ThePaleolithicFreethinker Wrote:  This thread makes me want to kill and grill one of every animal in the ecosystem around my house.

Shit, Confused hope your UPS person can just driver release.

A new type of thinking is essential if mankind is to survive and move to higher levels. ~ Albert Einstein
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04-05-2014, 08:54 PM
RE: How do Aethist think about veganism?
"compassionate and rational leap to the vegan diet."

This baffles me. How is being a vegan rational? I agree that there are some methods of raising meat that is less than humane, I'll give you that.

But, how is veganism rational? Predator and prey is something that exists all throughout the animal kingdom, man included. Is it wrong to kill and eat plants?

And what does atheism, which is the lack of belief in a god, have to do with menu choices?

And why are you trying to 'convert' people to your way of thinking? That's akin to the theists that try to convince people that their was is the best.

You don't want to eat a steak...don't...I don't have to make the same choice and it's not your place to tell me I do nor does it prove that you are more compassionate or rational. Perhaps more arrogant and totally full of your carrot-infused self.

See here they are the bruises some were self-inflicted and some showed up along the way. - JF
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04-05-2014, 11:24 PM
RE: How do Aethist think about veganism?
(04-05-2014 08:54 PM)Anjele Wrote:  "compassionate and rational leap to the vegan diet."

This baffles me. How is being a vegan rational? I agree that there are some methods of raising meat that is less than humane, I'll give you that.

But, how is veganism rational? Predator and prey is something that exists all throughout the animal kingdom, man included. Is it wrong to kill and eat plants?

And what does atheism, which is the lack of belief in a god, have to do with menu choices?

And why are you trying to 'convert' people to your way of thinking? That's akin to the theists that try to convince people that their was is the best.

You don't want to eat a steak...don't...I don't have to make the same choice and it's not your place to tell me I do nor does it prove that you are more compassionate or rational. Perhaps more arrogant and totally full of your carrot-infused self.

Hi anjele. Your a came to this thread a bit late, so you missed all the fun people had getting really mad at me.

If you care to you can read my previous posts in this thread, because I talk quite a bit about how come veganism is the rational conclusion of a moral argument, how come veganism concerns humanitarian concerns, and why many arguments against veganism are not very good. "Animals do it so can we" is one of such arguments.

I know its pretty lazy to just refer you to the other parts of this thread, so if you really want to argue with me I guess we can.
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04-05-2014, 11:28 PM
RE: How do Aethist think about veganism?
(04-05-2014 11:24 PM)Michael_Tadlock Wrote:  I know its pretty lazy to just refer you to the other parts of this thread, so if you really want to argue with me I guess we can.

Michael, I actually don't think this is lazy if you link them to whatever portions you consider most relevant to the person's question(s)/statement(s). This allows you to update them effectively without repeating your statements and the statements that others have made in response.

But that's just me.

A person very dear to me was badly hurt through a misunderstanding and miscommunication. For this, I am sorry, and he knows it. That said, any blaming me for malicious intent is for the birds. I will not wear some scarlet letter, I will not be anybody's whipping girl, and I will not lurk in silence.
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04-05-2014, 11:58 PM
RE: How do Aethist think about veganism?
(29-04-2014 09:19 AM)Michael_Tadlock Wrote:  
(29-04-2014 08:20 AM)cjlr Wrote:  Substantiate some of your god-damned assertions, bud.

We all know what you think; you've blindly trumpeted that since the OP.

Unless you're capable of explaining why there is no discussion to be had.


Disingenuously loaded, and once again wholly predicated on subjective precepts.


Then you haven't done the research. It is extraordinarily difficult to derive complete nutrition from a vegan diet, even with supplements.


Anecdotes are not data.

He's sure as shit the exception, and you know it. If you pop enough supplements and drugs, it doesn't matter what you eat.


What without why is not a discussion.

You have explained nothing.

You've made loaded and borderline dishonest appeals to deontological feels while staking out pseudo-objective and sanctimonious high ground. That's not compelling. Nor is it productive.

Its a debate on a moral theory, I think that is the best you can do. As a challenge, create a better argument against murder, or pedophilia. The best you can do is moral proscriptions, or make appeals to a higher moral authority or ideal. That doesn't mean its not productive and it doesn't make all such arguments invalid.

Morality is intangible and inexact. Its not a real thing but a subjective interpretation. We have to except some things as true without basis in order for a moral discussion to be possible. My axioms are very clear:

The lives of all animals have value.

Taking the life of an animal is immoral without good justification or cause

Good justification or cause includes to save your own life, or the life of another person or animal

Its not exhaustive. You can't make absolutist moral proscription, real life circumstances make you qualify everything. I can't justify 'why' these things are true, no more than anyone can justify 'why' any moral theory is true. If you reject my axioms, if you build your moral theory on an entirely distinct on non inclusive set of principles, then there is no argument I can form to persuade you.

(29-04-2014 09:59 AM)Michael_Tadlock Wrote:  
(29-04-2014 09:43 AM)Dom Wrote:  Your approach is pointless because you are going against nature and evolution. You cannot reverse evolution, at least not without a scientific breeding program.

What you are doing just leaves everything the way it is while you may be doing yourself harm.

I don't know where you live, but if you LOOK, you will find sustainable farms within driving distance.

Supporting them is the only way to actually help animals. The more people use them, the more these farms will spring up and the less animals will have to endure torture to feed an ever-growing population of humans.

I agree it is far preferable to eat animals from local farms that treat their animals much more humanely than factor farms do. If everybody went at least that far I think the welfare of animals would be much better. I would still hold the position though that is more preferable still not to eat them at all.

Also, keep in mind our evolution is not a mandate for meat eating. I agree we evolved to eat meat, but that doesn't mean we need it nor that we should continue to eat it.

(29-04-2014 12:44 PM)Michael_Tadlock Wrote:  
(29-04-2014 12:25 PM)ThePaleolithicFreethinker Wrote:  Why not? Humans are animals and we are no better than the rest. Why should we not do what animals do? You know what animals are doing? They are surviving. To live something must die. So meat has become an important part of our diets because it has helped us survive.
Human beings can reason and contemplate morality and animals can't. Its the same reason we don't give animals trials by jury. If you believed that animals and humans were completely level, then you would be obligated to extend the same right we reserve for people to animals. Like voting, owning property, or whatever. Incidentally, if humans and animals are the same then murdering animals should carry the same penalty as murdering a person. On the flip side, if murdering animals isn't wrong then murdering people shouldn't be wrong either. I don't think any of us pro cannibalism right?

If you are trying to equate human an animal behavior, then eating our young, rape, and incest would all be ok because animals do it. Primantis bite the head of their mate during intercourse. It is pretty clear that we make many distinctions between people and animals. For what reason couldn't we include what we eat?

(29-04-2014 05:51 PM)Michael_Tadlock Wrote:  
(29-04-2014 03:27 PM)cjlr Wrote:  One simple word, champ:
W
H
Y


The part where you have not presented an argument. You have made unsubstantiated declarations grounded solely in subjective personal experience. You've asserted nonsense, made disingenuous emotional appeals and constructed facetious false choices and bad analogies, delighted in weasel words, and never once explained the bases for your opinions.

While you rightly acknowledge that this will not convince other people - not that this observation in any way puts the brakes on the smug-train you're riding - you don't seem to get that for all that I don't care whether you convince me of anything I'd at the very least like to have some hope of understanding where you're coming from.

Lets imagine I was trying to argue murder was wrong. Something I hope we all agree on. Here are some of the arguments I might use:

Murder is wrong because:

murder robs a person of their life, which you have no right to take from them

murder robs friends and family members of their loved one, which you have no right to take

murder causes emotional distress to those who cared about the deceased

murder undermines public safety and create fear and uncertainty in the public conscience

ect.

These are moral claims. They can't be proven like math can. I can look at a rock and say "look, carbon dating puts this in the "murder is wrong" period". If we want to talk about how come murder is wrong we have to agree on some basic premises, and except them as truth so we can use them to build more complex arguments. If we want to talk about murder or killing animals in a moral compass, then we have to agree at least on this much; suffering is bad thing, and animals suffering is worthy of moral consideration.

This is what I am attempting to do right now. This is my argument. When I say I think eating meat is wrong, this is why

Why is eating meat wrong?


the price the animal pays to die far exceeds the good it provides in your diet. Its unfair and unjust to make an animal pay such a huge price for such a small pleasure.

Killing animals undermines human empathy and encourages the darkest aspects of our nature.

Raising live stock is environmentally irresponsible and ecologically inefficient

This is a semantic argument we are having. We are essentially arguing about whether or not it is possible for us to argue. I would very much like to move on. If possible, it would be great if you all could curb the insults and the personal attacks. Its starting to weigh on me quite a bit. Thanks Smile.

(29-04-2014 08:20 PM)Michael_Tadlock Wrote:  
(29-04-2014 06:23 PM)cjlr Wrote:  Why??

That is still an inadequately defined and poorly explored statement.

Lets start with some simple truths.

Eating an animal necessitates killing that animal.
If an human hadn't killed that animal, that animal would have lived at least one instant longer than it did.
Therefore, eating an animal means denying that creature of at least some quantity of life. Life being living moments measured in seconds, hours, days, ect.

Now I am going to make an assumption. The lives of animals, the living moments I described above, have some value greater than zero.

Is is not unfair then to view eating an animal as an exchange of flesh for life. The human gets the commodity if meat, the animal pays the price of its life.

If we use a utilitarian line of moral reasoning, that 'transaction' would be just only so long as the enjoyment the person received from eating meat was equal or greater than the harm done to the animal in the act of killing it.

I take take the position that the animal payed a far higher price; ie that it was not an equal exchange life for meat.

I need to qualify one last thing. I made an implicit assertion that the only good meat does for people is the enjoyment experienced when eating it. I stick to my assertion that you don't require meat for survival or good health.

Quote:Why??

That is a ludicrously broad and loaded statement. I'm'a need more substantiation than your subjective personal feels on that one.

Your right, that premise cannot be adequately supported with good reasoning.

Quote:

Indeed. And yet, this is a practical viewpoint and not a principled one, insofar as raising livestock is a highly variable set of acts.
(cf hunting; sustainable, well-managed hunting by humans is indistinguishable, so far as the animal in question is concerned, from hunting by non-human animals)

Those are some good distinctions you made, and you were correct in assuming that when I sad "raising livestock" I meant in the context of factory farming.

There are some other simple truths that lend to the validity of that statement. It takes more energy to grow crops to feed to cows to eat for food then it does to grow crops to eat for food. This is a simple ecological fact; about ten percent of the calories cows consume translates to the amount of calories there are of cow to eat. Source, every biology text book in any high school or college classroom anywhere.

In reality, the exact math is a bit messy. Grass fed cows eat food humans can't eat, so certainly that would not count. However, more than 70% of beef, and almost 100% of chicken and pork are raised on factory farms. On factory farms animals eat some plant matter humans can't digest, but the vast majority of what they eat is corn, soybeans, barley, and other grains that are suitable for human consumption. Imagine if as a society we collective chose to feed that food to people instead of animals. More than a billion animals are raised ever year in the united states alone. Incidentally more than a billion people world wide live in abject poverty. I think it would be both practical and more human to feed people that food instead of livestock.

(30-04-2014 09:29 AM)Michael_Tadlock Wrote:  This post was like a breath of fresh air. Thank you. There are some very well thought out points and I am really glad you took the time to consider them.

(30-04-2014 01:32 AM)Tartarus Sauce Wrote:  Alright, so let me break this down having read all of it now.

First of all, I can see where you are coming from ethically and at face value it makes sense. Secondly, although I disagree with your position on veganism being both the best diet and your argument that it is a morally superior choice, I do now think that your intentions were indeed meant to spark debate and not meant to pamper a superiority complex. This has become more apparent the further along the thread has progressed.

That means a lot, thank you for saying that.

Quote:However, inversely, while you have distanced yourself (at the cost of being somewhat contradictory from your original post) from what at first appeared to be a tone of implicit condescension ---having now acknowledged moral subjectivity and that your argument is not applicable to somebody that disagrees with the morality of killing animals--- it has become increasingly clear that your argument actually fails to support itself in full. I would like to discuss the technical problems and practical quandaries you have failed to account for within your own axioms.

Alright, lets do it!

Quote:For starters, the crux of your argument is flawed since you fail to disentangle the technical aspect of your argument from its actual real world applicability. Yes, we don't have to eat meat to survive the way we did when we were hunter-gatherer's since the surpluses we produce agriculturally are more than enough to feed everyone (although globally they are severely inequitable in terms of geographic distribution) and we can replace the necessary proteins and nutrients from meat with supplements and substitutes. Yes, practically speaking, in order to meet the demand for meat consumption, we have to cultivate them to be slaughtered, so you're eating meat that was voluntarily killed by humans.

However, it is still false to state that universally speaking it is immoral to eat optional meat because a human had to kill the animal not out of necessity but desire, since no human actually technically HAS to kill an animal in order to harvest its meat in all scenarios. You could, for example, eat the meat of an animal that recently died from natural causes, or scavenge meat from an animal that was killed by a predator or accident (such as a fall). These situations discredit your universal association of optional human consumption of meat necessarily being preceded by it being optionally killed by human hands. If in such situations, you would still refuse to eat meat, then your veganism would in such cases no longer be a moral choice but a personal preference since a human had no role in the animal's death. Therefore, you can't claim that all instances of optionally eating meat are immoral according to your central axiom because your central axiom is incorrect in intrinsically linking the act of eating meat with the act of killing the animal. This is the usual case in practice, but is not the only possibility.

Different vegans will answer this different ways. I am more pragmatic then some, I think if you kill an animal for some legitimate reason and then eat the meat as an after thought that you haven't done anything wrong. If we are talking about practical, real work examples though, then the average person would probably only eat meat a few times in their lifetime, maybe a couple times a year at the most. When I say eating meat is wrong, I do mean in the explicit context of raising livestock for slaughter. A lesser wrong in my book, hunting or killing wild game for food.

Another vegan might answer this a different way. They might make the point that eating a dead animal you happened to find is not unlike eating a dead person if you stumbled into a cemetery. Animals bodies are worthy of the same respect and reverence after death as all people are, and therefore it wrong for much of the same reasons that cannibalism is wrong.

Quote:Secondly, you seem to treat the concept of killing an animal in an isolated moral vacuum, not considering instances where it might be straight out beneficial to kill an animal for reasons other than consuming them. What about if we killed the animal for other reasons that were justifiable and then tacked on harvesting their meat as an added bonus? What if we decided to hunt a catastrophic invasive species and every individual specimen we killed paid a price that was well worth the ecological gain? If in this instance, we decided to eat its meat as an afterthought, the original cost-benefit analysis of an animal paying with its life solely for yours or somebody else's pleasure in consuming it is no longer relevant.

I didn't make that distinction, but I also didn't make that claim either. If you or anybody else were suddenly attacked by a bear, I would both hope and recommend that use some kind of deadly force to defend yourself. If a poor family in india needed to clear more land for rice patties, and the meant that some animals would die as a result, I have a hard time justifying the absolutist position that this is wrong.

Let me give an analogy. When we are talking about murder, and when I say murder I mean killing people without good cause, then a moral proscription like this one generally applies "It is wrong to kill another human being". I think we would all agree that this is more or less correct (although I intentionally left it vague).

However, in our society we don't exercise the absolute position that killing another person is wrong in every context. What about self defense? What about in times of war? What if the killing person is insane, or sleep walking, or otherwise not of the right mind? What if you kill someone on accident, is that the same severity of a crime and equivalent moral wrong doing as if you kill them on purpose? Very quickly you feel the need to define things like intent, qualify certain circumstances, and give rational people moral license in some situations. Killing animals is no different.

When we talk about any moral position, whether it be murder, theft, sexual assault, whatever, then the moral sentiments need always be weighted against the real world circumstances. Actions themselves are not moral or immoral, its the circumstances that surround those actions, the motivations of the actors, and the consequences of those actions that determine a moral judgement. I realize this is a broad statement with a lot of ambiguous terms, and we can get into that if you care too. Debates on morality are conflicted and nuanced and you don't often get the same satisfying and clear cut conclusions like you do when you debate other topics.

Quote:Thirdly, why is it only immoral to kill animals for optional consumption? It's clearly not an issues of treating all life as sacred since otherwise you wouldn't endorse the consumption of plant life either. I've skimmed over some of your posts, so I might have missed a justification, but from what I've seen so far your special treatment of animals at this point seems arbitrary in terms of ascribing them moral significance. I would imagine it has something to do with our association of sentience with animals since they are the most complex of all organisms, and we seem to attribute greater degrees of perception, personal subjectivity (though I would hesitate to say self-aware consciousness which seems to be absent from most of them), and emotions to them.

But that brings me to another point that needs clarification; are you against the consumption of all animals, even the most structurally simple and primitive ones? If the deciding factor is sentience, then one could hardly claim that, say, an individual ant scurrying along has enough sentience to secure it preservation within the moral code. Would it be immoral to consume an ant (or I guess since one ant won't do much for ya, a couple hundred)? Why? They aren't sentient, they possess too simple a neural structure for nociceptors and therefore can't feel pain, and it's arguable whether they can even really "suffer" in the way we tend to conceive of it.

Do we owe ants and other low-tier sentient organisms the same respect to more structurally and neurally sophisticated animals? Is it something other than sentience preventing it from being morally acceptable to cultivate animals as auxiliary cuisine? Why is it okay to harvest the most intricate and biologically elaborate plant life but not the simplest and most inconsequential animal life? Or is it okay to consume some animals? What is the deciding criteria and what is moral to kill for consumption and what isn't?


The official party line for veganism is that killing an animal, even the most simple of insects, is wrong. I understand why people take that position, its easier to defend. I don't personally believe that. Ants are marvelous creatures and I don't think you should go out of your way to kill them off just because, but if I find a line of them in my house I grab the bug spray like most everyone else does.

When you take that position as I have then you have to wrestle with a lot of grey area. Where is the magic "poof" if you will, that benchmark level of intelligence that makes an animal worth protecting? I don't think I can give you a satisfying answer. For me it extends to fish, amphibians, reptiles, mammals and birds. If you want to give up eating all these creatures in favor of a pure insect diet than I think that is definitely the better moral alternative. Have at it Thumbsup .

Arguments like this though run the danger of trivializing the real state of farm animals. If you have ever spent any time with a cow, you know they are dumb as rocks, no doubt about it. But they definitely 'feel'. You take their young away they are sad. If you put them in danger they are afraid. They like to hang out with some cows more than others. Cows can be very affectionate, they respond to touch, and they can tell people apart and have different reactions to them depending on how they are treated by them. I think for sure that level of intelligence is worthy of our empathy.

Quote:Those are your problems you have yet to account for on the fundamental aspects of your moral construction. Now let me move onto the potential practical concerns of society as a whole adopting veganism.

You state, first of all, how consumption of meat is a "small pleasure." As previously mentioned, it is not necessary for us to have meat to survive resource-wise anymore since technological advances have produced massive surpluses of plant produce. However, the proteins contained within meat are still needed nutritionally, and one cannot survive purely on the nutrients possessed by flora since humans have evolutionarily adapted to absorb necessary nourishments from both meat and non-meat products. Our bodies still need those nutrients, and they have to come from somewhere.

You don't need animals for any of our nutrien. I challenge you to name one vitamin or nutrional compound that people cannot get from plants. If vegans are dooming themselves with their diet, I challenge you to prove it.

Realistically, meat has nutrition in it, and some of it is difficult to get in large quantities in nature. I get that. The best possible diet, the optimal chemistry might include some small quantify of meat products (probably some organ meat right?). I don't think that justifies killing millions and millions of animals all the time. Its not worth the cost we make the animals, our environment, and other people pay.

Quote:You have gone to great lengths to detail the environmental and economic strains of the animal slaughtering industry, but you have failed to consider that the consequences of needing to create a suitable supply of nutritional supplements and replacements may not be much better. What sort of natural resources and organic materials must we pilfer and drain from the environment in order to maintain a sustainable and satisfactory quantity for our population? What sort of economic strain will be caused by the need to research, produce, stabilize, test, approve, and distribute newer and more efficient nutritional substitutes?

Well as a vegan you don't strictly need supplements, but I do recommend you take at least some as you get older, go through pregnancy, or raise small children. As I said before, calcium and iron can be difficult to get in a vegan diet. The reason for this is calcium as a nutrient is pretty scarce in nature, although you can find natural sources of it, and many products are calcium fortified (like soy milk). Iron is readily available in many plants, but the iron is packaged in such a way that it is much more difficult for our bodies to absorb than iron found in animal meat. You have to eat a lot more plant iron to get enough. Pro tip; if you take vitamin C with a high iron food or supplement, like orange juice after eating a bowl of spinach, you can increase the rate of iron absorption by as much as 100%.

As for where do we get vitamin supplements? Most supplements are derived from cultured bacteria. Some of them, like omegra 3 fatty acids, are best taken as a food additive. Chia seeds and flax are great for that.

If you want to see examples of healthy vegans, go out and try and find some. There are a lot of horror stories out there of people who switched to veganism, didn't take care of their nutrition, and got into trouble. It happens, probably even fairly frequently. Most of us are doing just fine. I have been vegan almost two years now, my fiance just as long, and I don't take any supplements or vitamins at all. In fact I probably eat more junk food then most people, its just happens to not have milk or meat in it.

Quote:Perhaps even more importantly, you are not paying nearly as much attention as you should to potential harmful physiological effects of everybody within a population switching to an all vegan diet. You know what they say about substitutes, they don't beat the real thing. We've adapted to extracting the necessary nutritional resources from meat for hundreds of thousands (millions of years if you also include our ancestral species) of years. As Dom previously stated, we are just scratching the surface of nutritional knowledge. You know why ships used to be such miserable places to be on for extended periods of time? Because of scurvy, and it took awhile to figure out how to battle that.

We know what some of the most vital functions some of the nutrients and proteins in meat provide for us, but what about all those potentially invaluable minerals and nutrients whose role we haven't nailed down yet? I would not at all be surprised to see outbreaks of diseases and deficiencies that would not have been predicted based on our current nutritional knowledge of meat if we attempted to only supplant the known nutritional necessities. What if it also turns out that not all of these vital nutritions are feasible to artificially replicate or substitute? That would seriously alter the original cost-benefit analysis axiom (switching from we kill animals because we like their taste to we kill animals because we can't substitute all the vital nutrients of meat) to the point of invalidating veganism as a moral choice.

Granted, we don't know whether or not meat is the only reliable and practically extractable source of any such vital nutrients, so such consequences are merely hypothetical. Clearly it's not impossible, for vegans have managed to get by without dropping dead left and right, but we haven't had a large and dedicated enough sample size in order to truly examine the effects of removing meat from our diet. The point is that since we don't yet know all the ins and outs of meat's nutrition, to drastically cut it out of our diet on a societal level is simply too risky. Therefore, it's not really justifiable to simply dismiss meat in today's age as an optional dietary component since, although it's not mandatory, we might soon find out for any of the reasons mentioned above that it could be enormously beneficial and therefore highly advisable to keep it in our diets.

So while your moral approach to veganism is more noble than most, I still find it lacking in both fundamental framework and practical considerations, and suggest you examine more into the issues I have brought up.

So vegans are these mentally deranged, emaciated, barely living sad people who hobble through life painfully on the way to living 80+ years right? I don't mean to be condescending, but come on, does that sound accurate to you? If everyone switched to veganism there would be new challenges, but I don't think its fair to say that everyone would be falling off left and right if we did. If veganism can't provide adequate nutrition, I respectfully and eagerly challenge you to prove it Smile.

(01-05-2014 06:28 PM)Michael_Tadlock Wrote:  
(01-05-2014 12:38 PM)Dom Wrote:  You go ahead and place your life in the hands of the current understanding of nutrition.

I'm going to place mine in the hands of thousands of years of evolution.

Which evolution do you want to take about? Meat eating in our ancestral line is likely very new, maybe a million years or so. Our pre-meat eating ancestor got along just fine right. Look at some of our closes genetic cousins. Chimps, apes, and orangutans, just to name a few primates, get along just fine without meat.

Look at the evidence. There are literally hundred of thousands vegans in the US alone who have been vegans for decades, with no documented physical maladies as a result. For hundred of years Buddhist monks and Asia and Hindus in India have been living on vegetarian or sometimes vegan diets. This is generations of people and millions of individuals forgoing meat for literally the entirety of their lives.

Think about what we do know about nutrition. Vitamins A, B, C, and the rest, all have excellent plant sources. Fats and steroids like cholesterols and omega 3 all have plant sources. Minerals we need like iron, calcium, zinc, and magnesium all have plant sources.

If you look at the data we do have vegans, what you find is vastly superior life expectancy and health outcomes, not inferior.

"A 2009 report published in the journal Nutrition Reviews summed up several discoveries. For example, researchers found that vegetarians and vegans were about half as likely to develop type 2 diabetes as other adults. Further, in clinical trials of diabetics, a low-fat vegan regimen actually improved blood-sugar control better than the diets traditionally prescribed to patients." -Huffington Post

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/11/10...74525.html

Compared to the average man, a vegan man lives almost ten years longer, a vegan woman more than six years longer.

http://www.nutraingredients.com/Research...inds-study

http://www.nhs.uk/news/2013/06June/Pages...espan.aspx

Heart disease, according to the center for disease control, kills one in four Americans in the United States, and a conservative, collaborative study finds that vegans are 74% as likely, or inversely 36% less likely, to develop heart disease:

http://www.cdc.gov/heartdisease/facts.htm

http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/70/3/516s.full

If you really invest in your health and actively seek out variety in your diet, dramatically limit your fat, and choose whole grains and unprocessed sugars over commercial alternatives, then you will very probably do even better. Notice meat is not part of that proscription. The reason is you don't need it.

Now I will be the first to say there are confounding variables in these studies, and that it is really hard to isolate diet as a variable. That being said, the evidence is overwhelmingly clear, vegans do just fine and there is no reason at all to believe vegans are unhealthy.

(04-05-2014 08:54 PM)Anjele Wrote:  "compassionate and rational leap to the vegan diet."

This baffles me. How is being a vegan rational? I agree that there are some methods of raising meat that is less than humane, I'll give you that.

But, how is veganism rational? Predator and prey is something that exists all throughout the animal kingdom, man included. Is it wrong to kill and eat plants?

And what does atheism, which is the lack of belief in a god, have to do with menu choices?

And why are you trying to 'convert' people to your way of thinking? That's akin to the theists that try to convince people that their was is the best.

You don't want to eat a steak...don't...I don't have to make the same choice and it's not your place to tell me I do nor does it prove that you are more compassionate or rational. Perhaps more arrogant and totally full of your carrot-infused self.

I feel like meeting in the middle would be to link some of my more relevant posts, kind of like what charis recommended. These or the more relevant arguments I made in this thread, and they address a lot of your points, some points other people brought up, and some other bits that you might finding interesting.
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05-05-2014, 01:17 AM
RE: How do Aethist think about veganism?
We are omnivores, and I'm fine with eating meat and veggies. Are there interesting debates to be had over the ethicacy of factory farming animals to feed our meat consumption? Sure. If someone chooses not to eat meat because of perceived health benefits or social and ethical concerns, have at it.

If we're at a restaurant and someone tries to give me shit over getting a burger? That person is an asshole. The person that jut gets the Caesar salad? That person is cool. The person that gets the salad and can have the conversation about their choice without being judgmental? They are also cool. But if they touch my burger, then we will have an issue.

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05-05-2014, 03:42 AM
RE: How do Aethist think about veganism?
(04-05-2014 11:24 PM)Michael_Tadlock Wrote:  
(04-05-2014 08:54 PM)Anjele Wrote:  "compassionate and rational leap to the vegan diet."

This baffles me. How is being a vegan rational? I agree that there are some methods of raising meat that is less than humane, I'll give you that.

But, how is veganism rational? Predator and prey is something that exists all throughout the animal kingdom, man included. Is it wrong to kill and eat plants?

And what does atheism, which is the lack of belief in a god, have to do with menu choices?

And why are you trying to 'convert' people to your way of thinking? That's akin to the theists that try to convince people that their was is the best.

You don't want to eat a steak...don't...I don't have to make the same choice and it's not your place to tell me I do nor does it prove that you are more compassionate or rational. Perhaps more arrogant and totally full of your carrot-infused self.

Hi anjele. Your a came to this thread a bit late, so you missed all the fun people had getting really mad at me.

If you care to you can read my previous posts in this thread, because I talk quite a bit about how come veganism is the rational conclusion of a moral argument, how come veganism concerns humanitarian concerns, and why many arguments against veganism are not very good. "Animals do it so can we" is one of such arguments.

I know its pretty lazy to just refer you to the other parts of this thread, so if you really want to argue with me I guess we can.

No, not late at all. Just didn't comment earlier.

Nothing to argue about. Your moral high horse argument makes you arrogant. I already said that there are issues with how some farm animals are treated.

Just because you have determined your stance is correct still does not give you license to try to push that stance on others. You are no better than the door-knockers that assault people with their god-based morality.

If not eating meat makes you feel superior, fine. Have at it.

If veganism is right for you, go for it. You just don't have the right to decide it's right for everyone.

And again, veganism doesn't have a damn thing to do with atheism. Perhaps a vegan forum would be a better place for you to spew your agenda.

See here they are the bruises some were self-inflicted and some showed up along the way. - JF
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05-05-2014, 06:13 AM
RE: How do Aethist think about veganism?
The thing I have with veganism is not that they don't eat meat, it's that they seem to think they're better than everybody for not eatting meat...

If you don't wanna eat meat that doesn't make you a better person, that makes you an idiot for willingly choosing to not take part in such a huge varied menu with countless different flavors and things to enjoy.

You are choosing to eat different to what everyone else at the table is eatting, you don't get to share that special moment when that steak is the god damn best steak you've ever had. Nobody raves about how that place over there has the best piece of lettuce in the entire world you swear to god...

You limit yourself culturally, you limit yourself socially and you limit yourself tastebudally (coining that word).

It's not a superior way of living, it's a willful choice to purposely hinder yourself.
It's stupid. Especially in a day where the meat industry is a) subject to higher and higher standards (and these standards are changed by animal welfare groups who seek better slaughter and farming of animals, not the total halting of that industry which is unrealistic) and b) fucking huge and isn't going to stop any time soon.

Vegans are stupid. It's a self imposed handicap so you can feel superior to others. It makes no logical sense and can even be a health hazard.
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05-05-2014, 08:18 AM
RE: How do Aethist think about veganism?
I actually think some began points are valid. We can agree that the treatment of animals in industrial farming is horrific. We can agree that animals should be treated humanely. And, like atheism, this position tends to increase with education. But is veganism liken to atheism in being a rational choice? No.

Somewhere you posted your reasoning, saying 1) it was immoral to kill an animal without good reason. I agree. The needless torture and death of any living thing is inexcusable. ANY living thing. I avoid killing spiders if I can, and I feel horrifically guilty cutting down a healthy tree. Your second point was that you have to kill an animal to eat it. This is obvious.

Where we differ is on point three, where you state it isn't worth it to kill an animal to eat it, especially science we are omnivores. Here is where I, and most of the others who are getting upset, disagree. I do not condemn a lion for eating a gazelle, I do not scold my cat for killing a mouse, I do not damn a bear (an omnivore) for eating deer and fish. Human biology is set up to process meat. Protein is crucial for tissue development. Saturated fat plays an important role in the nervous system. And the most natural and efficient method of getting these things is through meat. I also avoid processed goods, so cutting out meat, a major source of my calories, leaves me with only fruit and vegetables. THIS IS A DEATH SENTENCE. yes, I could get my calories through starches, but as diabetes runs in my family I think I'd rather not.

But the question was an ethical one. Do I think it is acceptable to kill animals to eat them. What about deer? The entire purpose of deer in an ecosystem is to be killed and eaten by other animals. Most of the time cougars, wolves, sometimes coyotes and bears. Why, therefore, is it wrong for me to eat it? When a human kills an animal, 100% of that animal is used. The hide to leather, the guts to animal food, the other bits to animal products, and the meat is eaten. When another animal kills it a large portion of that carcass is left to rot.

I have worked in processing plants. I have killed and processed animals. So long as there is little to no waste I feel no guilt about this. Eating meat is healthy and natural. I don't eat industrial meat anymore, due to ethical concerns. I eat free range meat. I try to buy mostly organic meat as well, but that's a bit cost prohibitive, so it's a sometimes thing. If you choose not to eat meat for ethical reasons I can respect that. If you choose to be a holier-than-thou dick about it (which is how you come off, btw) then we have a problem and you shouldn't be surprised when people call you out on being a quack.
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05-05-2014, 08:24 AM
RE: How do Aethist think about veganism?
(02-05-2014 06:23 PM)ThePaleolithicFreethinker Wrote:  This thread makes me want to kill and grill one of every animal in the ecosystem around my house.

I have some crappie I caught yesterday. Like three pounds of meat on the thing. Delicious!
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