I have seen people post that it is unethical to use products that used animals in there production. Even to the extent of using a mule for plowing or taking honey from bees, “against their will.” It seems that the argument parallels animals used for creating a product to slavery.
I also know that many vegans have pets. A dog living in your apartment or house seems to be as far removed from its natural environment as a mule on a small organic farm. The only reason the animal is “OK” with this set-up is because of years of breading, breaking, and training that left an unnatural shell of its wild ancestors; the same with slavery. This conditioning makes it easy for them to be used for our companionship. Try raising a wild wolf, that you get from the wild as an adult, and you would understand this better.
Would not a dog catching a Frisbee or guiding a blind man be as bad as some raising elephants for the circus or caging giraffes in a zoo?
Karin, very well said! Congratulations!
HI Karin. Thanks for thoughtfully explaining your position.
Is it ideal that my horse has to work for her food? Maybe not, but is it fair we all have to work just to have a roof over our heads and food in our bellies? It can't be.
That it is not fair for us to be required to work to have food and shelter does not lend itself to the argument that it is therefor ok that we impose the same unfairness to horses. This is a form of logical fallacy in which we use one example of injustice to excuse another example of injustice (though I realize that's not necessarily your essential motive).
All this statement actually says is that both humans and horses are being treated with injustice by humans.
A carriage horse that is "freed" (retired) is not looking at a great life.
But a horse that was free to begin with would be.
Draft horses are typically a little harder to ride because of their size, so they end up standing around out in pasture, with nothing to do- not the natural way one thinks of free horses, gallivanting along the prairie, going from one adventure to another.
They are still caged (i.e. fenced in) and domesticated. Wild horses that live freely do run and play and gallivant with their herd.
Working animals? Sure, I agree with that- finding people buried under rubble (rescue dogs), seeing eye dogs, carriage horses, yes.
These are all examples of how an animal can be used to help us. Do you imagine that if a dog had the choice of living with it's family, it's brothers and sisters in it's herd or leading a blind human around all day, they would choose the blind human? The truth can be seen in the fact that a dog must be taken from it's mother; it does not leave voluntarily.
We are all in this together and I'd rather see a healthy, well-cared for and loved carriage horse than a mad cow with mad cow.
This is another form of logic fallacy, in which we make something seem ok by comparing it to something worse, as if the only other option was the worse thing. It's like how people say: "well, I'm bad, but I'm not Hitler!". Extreme example, but you get the point. Fact is, there are more choices than either a well-cared for carriage horse or mad cow; it's not an either/or. We would all rather see a well-loved carriage horse than a mad cow, but that doesn't erase the other possibilities - the carriage horse could've been free from the start, free to be with its herd.
Again, the proof with horses is that they do not come voluntarily to pull our carriages or be saddled. They must first be taken and trained to do so. The very fact that they do not come voluntarily makes what we do kidnapping and imprisonment - by definition. And yes, once an animal is thoroughly trained, they may not desire to leave, but this is a psychological condition of domestication, an imposed condition, not one they chose.
Taking care of animals that take care of us seems fair to me and again
They did not ask to be taken care of, nor did they need to be. We forced them into a position of needing to be taken care of, for the purpose of providing us with a service. That is as near the definition of slavery as anything.
Lastly, how well a slave is treated does not change the underlying truth that it is a slave. And that a kidnapped person or animal may eventually lose their desire for freedom does not change the essential fact that they were kidnapped.
much better than what some of the people in this world are doing to poor, defenseless animals.
Again, because what we do with carriage horses is better than what some people do to defenseless animals, does not make it right what we do to carriage horses.
This is a form of logical fallacy in which we use one example of injustice to excuse another example of injustice
this seems to be similar to the red herring below, but i think in this case since a parallel is being drawn, it may be best as faulty analogy:
This is another form of logic fallacy, in which we make something seem ok by comparing it to something worse, as if the only other option was the worse thing.
i think this sort of fallacy may best qualify as a red herring:
if you have other perspectives, please let me know.
Yes, you're absolutely correct. The two links you supply sum up the faults here quite well.
Both of these often appear when the person recognizes, on some level, the injustice being done but seeks to excuse it through the use of relativity - i.e. by placing the injustice somewhere on a scale of better-worse and then pointing out examples of things that fall further on the worse side. It's a subjective exercise at best. This often leads down the road of moral relativism... a dangerous path. It also often leads us to measure the rightness or oughtness of our actions through comparison with unrighteousness and noughts (i.e. I performed action A, which is good when compared to action B, therefor action A is good.). This avoids the essential question of whether A is good, in and of itself.
If there are two starving kittens outside my apartment during Winter I'm probs going to take them in if they want me to. Which I did. :P
I see the point of both sides though, definitely. I think it's okay if you're actually helping the animal, and giving him/her the chance to go outside (if the area is safe from people collecting for pounds, busy streets, etc.) with the option of coming back if it wants. If it's just, "Oh well I want a pet..." then I see the selfish side. Especially if you buy the animal, or get it from a breeder. You can't buy friends, animals included.
I'm yet undecided about adopting animals from shelters. Yes, it's good to get them out of there, but why are they there in the first place? I don't quite get why the 'animal collectors' go around taking in strays so they can sell/adopt them out. Is it all money making? Why are there so many animals at pounds being euthanized because they don't have homes? What was wrong with their homes in the wild? I've heard people say that they'll just keep breeding and starve and die. But if they're all starving and dying then why are there still animals out there to be 'captured'? Ugh. Someone explain it to me please. /endrant
I started this post a while ago in response to a comment that was made about a guy buying wool from a small local farm. He said that all the sheep seemed to be treated very nicely and look so happy almost joyful to have their wool shaved for the summer months. This person was ridiculed and the person coming down on them said that the sheep were not free and would not grow such an excess of wool had they not been bred for human use. I say that to set up my follow-up question. To those here that have stated that they can't see how it is not right to own another living being, to those that say that dogs were bred to be your best friend, and to those that brag about how good your pets have based on the life that you provide for them; how do you feel about wearing wool from a humanly raised sheep?
What if the sheep was treated just as good as your family pets?