My favorite argument is the one that goes: “How do you know wheat doesn’t feel pain? Who are YOU to assume that one life is more sacred than another? Consider the rabbits who’s skulls get crushed in by the wheat farmer.”
This argument is almost always used exclusively to justify the ritual murder of animals that (for their entire existence) stand knee-deep in their own shit to the music of their pasture-mates choking up blood bubbles and the profitable hum of the slaughter machines.
When you use an argument about the sacred nature of life to justify a mechanized, culturally accepted and observed practice of killing animals: you are justifying ritual murder and sacrifice. Its “ritual” because… well, that’s what it is. And it is “sacrifice” because an animal MUST DIE for you to enjoy the benefits of its flesh.
You might have trouble coming to this conclusion yourself because the television has told you, as you choke down a pepperoni pizza, that animal sacrifice is something that Satanists do. The television has told you that it is ok to partake in animal sacrifice because “somebody else is doing it and you didn’t see it happen” – a quintessential magicians trick. The magic comes out when you, having lost track of the balls under the cup, feel GUILTLESS when devouring another’s flesh.
Don’t believe me?
I could sit outside in an avocado grove eating sprouted sandwiches, watching the crops being tilled and feel all the more refreshed when my eating ritual is complete. I would feel amazing and fulfilled, grateful in fact that I had such a beautiful sight to observe while eating my delicious sandwich. My attention has only to shift then to compassion for the farmer and the quality of future crops. To behold the beauty of my food and the entire process around which it revolves. We are what we eat.
Try to envision this same scenario with McDonald’s, Taco-Bell, Tyson beef / chicken, etc.
oh yeah. It doesn’t work. The magic has been utterly removed. Or rather, the deception has been removed. Very few people would care to see the ritual sacrifice of animals while eating. Quite frankly, it’s hard to swallow. This is much different from tilling wheat or picking apples off of a tree. How exactly? Well, common experience for one. You know – the sort of thing we derive our culture from.
I’m not saying that humans should never eat animals. I am saying that we ARE RESPONSIBLE for killing and sacrificing them for our nourishment. Or not. Perhaps we should sacrifice some more “time” in exchange for a healthier experience on Earth, rather than sacrifice Earth for the sake of “time” to which we have no true control. The conditions of a “kill” are linked to the factories, policies and realities of where the animal both lives and dies. And people will go to the ends of logic to prove themselves free from their responsibility. If you accept the system you support than be prepared to be steeped in its appropriate aesthetic of bovine-genocidal-torture with dense ramifications for human consciousness. Some people have chosen to not support the ritual murder of animals. It is not because they are stupid, under-educated or unhealthy. It’s because they want to “leave the party.” Let them leave gracefully.
At this point you might be saying: “WTF, eating the cheesy, twin-meat-flaps of perfectly balanced nutrition IS NOT ritual sacrifice!”
My answer is: “it’s no more ritual murder than performing capital punishment for the ’emotional release’ of the victim’s family.”