And which cultural diversity are you talking about?

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“Law and rights are inherited, like a perpetual illness. They are dragged from generation to generation and shift lightly from location to location. Reason becomes nonsensical, advantage turns plague, woe you who are a grandchild. The question of the right which is born with us, is rarely being raised.” – from Faust 1. part, J.W. Goethe

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When it comes to violence to any bodies,
what point will I make with showing culturally diverse forms of joy from causing death, destruction, torture, pain.

When it comes to learning about and connecting
with the fragility of sensitive gentleness of life’s individuations,

for my own inner and outer moral progress and that of my social ties with coinhabitants, fellows,
here is where I have to learn from cultural diversity and that entails
also the nonhuman cultural diversities.

(palangLY; which of the layers of cultural diversity are they referring to, aiming at what?)

Corey Lee Wrenn: Why We Love Dogs, Eat Pigs, and Wear Cows: A critical review

This is an older article, but still as relevant …

Why We Love Dogs, Eat Pigs, and Wear Cows: A critical review

Corey Lee Wrenn

Melanie Joy’s 2010 book, Why We Love Dogs, Eat Pigs, and Wear Cows:  An Introduction to Carnism, explores the social psychological processes behind our confused and often contradictory treatment of nonhuman animals based on arbitrary characteristics and meanings that we, as a society, attribute to them.  Joy defines carnism as “[…] the belief system in which eating certain animals is considered ethical and appropriate.”  (30)  Unfortunately, the belief system she attempts to capture is painfully insufficient in explaining speciesism.  I criticize Joy’s work on three major points.  First, her argument offers nothing intellectually novel.  Second, Joy’s conceptualization and critique of carnism is speciesist, counterintuitive, and is theoretically impotent.  Third, her proscriptions for change are confusing and inappropriate.

What’s new here?  Explaining differential treatment and systems of exploitation

Regrettably, Joy’s work offers nothing sufficiently new to the literature.  Neither Joy’s explanation of why we treat species differentially nor her explanation for why we use nonhumans at all is unique.

Joy takes a social-psychological approach to explaining embedded nonhuman animal consumption.  She offers carnism as a tool for understanding why we love some nonhumans and hurt others.  However, this phenomenon has been heavily theorized in nonhuman animal studies for some time now.  Indeed, Gary Francione has been promoting the idea of “moral schizophrenia*” for several years.  Made famous in his piece, “We’re All Michael Vick,” first published in the Philadelphia Daily News in 2007, Francione understands our differential treatment of species to be a product of moral and cognitive confusion:

There is something bizarre about condemning Michael Vick for using dogs in a hideous form of entertainment when 99 percent of us also use animals that are every bit as sentient as dogs in another hideous form of entertainment that is no more justifiable than fighting dogs: eating animals and animal products.

Francione’s famous example is surprisingly similar to Joy’s introductory illustration of carnism.  She asks us to imagine eating a “delicious” cow’s flesh stew at a dinner party, only to find out the cow’s flesh was actually golden retriever flesh:

If you are like most Americans, when you hear that you’ve been eating dog, your feelings would automatically change from pleasure to some degree of revulsion. [….]  How can a food, given one label, be considered highly palatable and that same food, given another, become virtually inedible?  […]  Why is it that we have such radically different reactions to beef and dog meat?  (11-12)

This analogy adds little, if anything, to Francione’s conceptualization.  One notable distinction is that Joy invariably focuses only on inconsistencies in flesh consumption, whereas Francione routinely challenges all nonhuman animal use.

In her book, The Sexual Politics of Meat:  A Feminist-Vegetarian Critical Theory, first published in 1990, Carol Adams, too, has explored this topic.  Terming the phenomenon “compartmentalized compassion**,” Adams rightly criticizes how the suffering of one group often receives higher priority than that of others.  Joy makes no reference to either predecessor; nor are Francione and Adams likely to be the only theorists to have breeched this topic.

In explaining the institution of nonhuman animal use, Joy describes carnism as a self-perpetuating system that is entrenched with the help of ideology, symbolic and physical invisibility, and powerful agricultural elites. Yet, for well over a decade, sociologist David Nibert has been exploring the social psychological detachment responsible for ongoing prejudices against animals.  Nibert has long argued that our taste for nonhuman animal products is socially constructed and determined by the interests of powerful agribusiness.  So, again, there is nothing revolutionary about Joy’s observations.

A focus on carnism is inherently speciesist

Perhaps the most glaring inconsistency in Joy’s carnist thesis is the explicit focus on nonhuman animal flesh consumption.  She makes little to no reference of the gross injustices inherent to the production of dairy, egg, wool, honey, leather, fur, etc.  Neither does she make mention of other systems of exploitation outside of dietary consumption such as nonhuman use in entertainment, companionship, and experimentation.  In other words, Joy’s carnism theory is nothing more than a vegetarian argument.   Quite ironically, she challenges society’s confused thinking about nonhuman animals by compounding that confusion with a highly contradictory argument:  She urges us to consider why we would eat one nonhuman and not the other, yet she says nothing as to why we would avoid flesh but not other products or practices.  Joy promotes a vegetarian belief system that only partially addresses speciesism.  And, in promoting vegetarianism, she ignores (and thus neutralizes) the morally imperative vegan belief system.  This is unfortunate, and frankly counterproductive, as people who ascribe to her prescribed use-specific vegetarian belief system will fall short of making the necessary paradigm shift away from speciesism and will not in any way address the underlying problem of use in general.

Bearing Witness

Joy’s solution to the carnist belief system is to engage in what she calls “bearing witness.”  While she fails to adequately explain, as a social psychological matter, what bearing witness exactly is, it basically entails personal identification with those who suffer and subsequent empathy.  It is this empathy that has the ability to dismantle the system of carnism.  How exactly she expects society to navigate this path of “bearing witness” and overcome enormous social psychological barriers is unclear.  Regardless, once one has become “witness” (whatever that means), she then advises readers to reduce consumption of nonhuman animal products

While eliminating your consumption of animal products is ideal, just reducing the amount of them in your diet can have a significant impact on the animals and on yourself; for instance, a person who eats meat once or twice a month consumes far fewer animals than someone who eats meat daily.  Clearly, this helps the animals.  But you, too, benefit, as you feel more integrated in your values and practices. (147)

So, in other words, Joy devotes approximately 150 pages to challenging systems of inequality and the social psychological barriers to nonviolence only to backpedal in her conclusion and reinforce those barriers by portraying reductionism as virtuous.

Joy also advises the newly “witnessed” to support advocacy organizations.  Strangely, she makes no mention whatsoever of any vegan or abolitionist organizations–the only advocacy organizations that seriously challenge the “carnist” society she takes issue with.  Instead, she relentlessly promotes PETA and HSUS.  PETA, being a welfarist organization that focuses on reforming nonhuman animal use, has nothing to do with abolishing carnism.  What’s worse, HSUS has openly denounced any intention of ending nonhuman animal use and is completely antithetical to Joy’s argument.

Beyond its glaring theoretical miscomings, Joy’s work does stand as an interesting review of important sociological and psychological concepts and their relation to nonhuman animal exploitation.  However, as I previously stated, this is far from uncharted territory.  What’s more, Nick Cooney has recently released a book, Change of Heart:  What Psychology Can Teach Us about Spreading Social Change, which explores the social psychological aspects of systems of inequality and how to effectively challenge those systems.  While Cooney is affiliated with The Humane League, a notoriously welfarist nonhuman animal organization, Change of Heart remains largely unbiased and objective.  Furthermore, his work is significantly more comprehensive.

*I recognize that this term is ableist.  Read Francione’s discussion of this concern here.

**I also take issue with the condenscending connotation of this term and the ecofeminist rejection of rights.

Suggested by the author:

Source: http://www.examiner.com/vegan-in-roanoke/why-we-love-dogs-eat-pigs-and-wear-cows-a-critical-review (last visited 02.04.2013)

 

Nonanthropocentric perceptions

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As a PDF

Society acts as if animal degradation and zoocide were irrelevant, they separate these type of phenomena from questions about human existence and environmental ethics. Such blind spots form part of a lacking ability to speak about the fundamentality of the human-animal relation in constructive terms.

The only way humanity’s large collectives correlate to nonhumans is by assuming the own existential meaning could be placed on top of nonhumanity in arbitrary hierarchies, assuming that animal existence was of lesser meaningfulness in the universe, in the big scope.

However, animal history, past and present, can’t be relegated into these spaces humanity have created … for killing and torture, or equally into the communication structures of demeaning anthropocentrist propaganda, into any of the institutions of speciesism (ranging from zoological gardens to natural science museums), or into cultural murderous-rape habits of consumption:

Nonhuman cultural history is the life of this universe’s animal inhabitants, and not all human individuals would ever lie about this “crossroads truth” in human perception.

Gruppe Messel / Tierautonomie / Animal Autonomy

Antispeciesism is not necessarily what speciesism isn’t

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People who consider themselves to be antispeciesists mostly don’t see or don’t want to discuss the links between: ecocide, genocide and zoocide. The term and notion of a zoocide does not even exist for most in that correlation in their terminology. Many still hold the same assumptions about animality that base on ethical histories and theories within philosophy, religion, natural sciences that are the very cause of speciesism. Loving nonhuman animals at the same time as quoting biologist data for instance and instead of coining own liberated terms,
antispeciesism today does not equal consistent antispeciesist thought so far. It helps with the symptoms but harms at the same time, by cementing nonhumans into a slippery slope concept of freedom and dignity pushed upon them.

Rights claimed only go as far as theories about nonhuman animals are compatible with it. Not breaking with the power of human definition, antispeciesism today misses to acknowledge that nonhuman animals are oppressed in the first place in their very own qualities of who they are, in their identities independent of humancentric frameworks. And that happens parallel to them being bereft of their physical freedom and integrity, parallel to being tortured and murdered and physically objectified to a human will to cause them the ultimate pain … .

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Physical death and the lust of viewing

If veganism excludes in the ingestion of animal parts, why not the visible use as objects to watch for trifle reasons. Does anybody have to see death on display in order to get enlightened, informed or educated? And even that would be a trifle reason to objectify the psychical integrity of a dead animal.

Who would it be okay to display? Whose body parts would you display? Unter what circumstances?

A human is supposed to look relativeley anonymous in order to be publicly diplayed, with nonhuman animals people suppose their individiality does not count “as much” when taxidermically prepared. We face many double standards in who can be and who can’t be displayed and the manner and purpose of displayal.

A long and highly problematic issue. However as vegans and even more so as animal rights and animal dignity allies we state that:

bodys and body parts of animals are ethically extremely problematic and should never be used in exhibits – neither in informative nor in arts displays. The only exceptions should meet equal standards such as in e.g Guidance for the Care of Human Remains in Museums, or Exhibition Ethics, meaning equally, nonhuman animal remains should if also only be exhibited as valid agents of (inter-species) social life, taking into consideration the physical integrity and diginty of an individual nonhuman animal’s life. Everything else comes down to an objectification of nonhuman animals.

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Negative interfaces of ethical failure:
Displays of human bodies/body parts in exhibitions
Displays on nonhuman animal bodies/body parts in exhibitions are degrading.
Feeding the objectifying voyeurism of human spectators, educating them in talking about others, and not about being empathetic and concerned about the other, dead individual. Or would you display your loved ones for everyone to watch dead on display?

Gruppe Messel / Tierautonomie / Animal Autonomy

 

Five neovegan perspectives

Five neo-vegan perspectives by Farangis G. Yegane and Gita Yegane Arani, revised version as of 1st July 2017.

This text as a PDF; the older version of these fagments.

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Neo-vegan perspectives – 1

Why Animal Rights can’t be treated as secondary to Human Rights

Let’s assume we can’t overcome human conflicts, and let’s assume we do not want to consider animal rights (as an equivalent to human rights) and environmental issues as ways in which we could also find fundamentally better approaches to conflict solution, because there doesn’t really exist an openness in the viewpoints of the majority to allow new or different perspectives on what is to be considered as relevant and ‘sense-possessing’.

Animal rights, even if not considered as touching a sphere of meaningful phenomena, is objectively not a secondary concern.

This is so, since the fact that human persons relegate animal individuals into “irrelevance”, as
a sector created for the nature-animal complex, doesn’t hold any factual account for the leakage we can call an obvious one if we look at:

a) the grade of destruction aggravated by any forms of speciesism (and humancentrism
respectively)

and

b) the essential bond of the human notion of an ideal justice in the moral practice lived by societies (idealism) with the natural and the animal world; and the unknown factors reciprocal
of nature and animals overall as they display themselves back to human society (the other
intelligence – designed by life basically).

***

Neo-vegan perspectives – 2

Animal Rights and Human Rights, your rights, as interconnected

How can animal rights and human rights be interlocked politically in a constructive way, instead of using human rights against animal rights?

We often tend to think that animal- and human rights would exclude each other, and the stereotypical „AR vs. HR” question, about whom you would save first if you had to: your dog or your child, is being asked as if one had to pass a witch-test which is going to decide your fate as a proper human- or animal rights advocate. A more reasonable view would let us come to the conclusion that narrowing things down to the extremes isn’t really a useful approach upon which a rights debate can be lead.

The focus in such a question that seeks to radically separate two instances (two situative phenomena occurring in a wider context) from each other, is almost suggestive if not ignorant in its view towards the facets of reality that make up the complexity of life as living beings experience it.

Put in a situation where we had to decide between rescuing one living being and another, it is
likely that we would not want to decide for one and against the other. We should consider the
perspectival option that we’d want to save every being that’s in despair. We could think for instance: in any situation where a being needs help, a being needs a helper!

As animal rights advocates we clearly want both: a full consideration of (reasonable) human interests and rights and a full consideration of what we can understand to be the rights of other animals as natural holders of such – by virtue of their self-autonomous existence in this world. And to take this a step further: we probably want to interlock animal- and human rights, so that both reaffirm and solidify each other. How can this be reached? And how can this, even more so, be reached in our current human societies, where the notion of animal rights is not regarded as positively relevant for the “’own’ – collective human concern”.

One aspect that builds an (euphemistically said) “automatic” way to bind animal- and human
Rights together, is, as simple as it may sound the natural environment. Whereby ‘the (natural) environment’ can be a term for what the German poet-thinker Goethe more comprisingly called “das AllLeben”, the all-live – a term that hints at the interconnectedness of all life forms on earth and beyond.

The environment, nature, is the habitat of nonhuman animals and humans alike. It’s the sphere of living existence where both humans and nonhuman animals meet in their natural state of being, and it’s the very political ground (that is: a sphere of life and thus of interests) that needs to be re-captured for the ethical side that is to it in regards to animal liberation and animal rights.

There are three core aspects that bind humans and animals together in their enviromentalistic
and nature-bound context:

a.) existentially we got the shared ‘outer world’ on which life depends in its individual and
collective existential value
b.) the conflict between the (major) life forms is produced by ‘the culture’ in which life finds
its contextualization, ranging from predominantly destructive in current humancentric human societies and, environmentally seen, constructive in animal cultures and their form of relating to the natural
c.) the solution, the bridge, lays in the will for re-establishing a natural balance, that encompasses its participants, the living beings, as co-creatant, co-existential “agents of an self-created contextualizing existence” – that can be understood as something that we emotionally would induce with “dignity”.
Dignity is the felt and the realizable foundation of rights. Being co-existent in this world and
acknowledging the agency of nonhuman animals in the environmental context, is a basis that
should tie human- and animal rights constructively in a potentially fundamental way.

***

Neo-vegan perspectives – 3

Neoveganism as a way forward in our current day Western and other emerging democracies

It seems the more you realize the political scope of human action and human thought, the less
you think of the absurd idea that there would be one single power (the establishment, the fiscal world, a people, a god) that runs everything in a totalitarian style: the big complexes of “might” stifle the individuals power to impact things, but individual action can’t be substituted in democracies.

What can I, as a seemingly powerless individual, do when I see an unfathomable disaster such
as the BP oil spill, a disaster caused by the ‘ruling’ part of our civilization? Our civilization bases (in its majority) upon humancentrist ideals today, it doesn’t need to take the natural environment and its “wild” inhabitants into account. To deal responsibly as an individual means I have to be willing to see the bigger contexts of phenomena, and widen my view over the limits of any anthropocentric limit.

On the opposite side of the big context of things it’s the individual that has an impact on the
situation she lives in: by action (political action, in a basic sense) and by thought (any form of it). It’s an ethical impact living beings ‘live’.

When I make the sensible claim that ethics should be the factor upon which to decide what’s
wrong and what’s right, I should also acknowledge that ethics means to behave respectfully towards life. What is respectful? And what type of life matters and can be treated with which forms of respect?

Every living being on this earth has its own place in the universe – practically. The world should not be seen anthropocentrically simply because we can’t fathom the meaningfulness of other life in regards to those dimensions which we don’t know much or even anything about. Other “dimensions” of meaning aren’t restricted to physics and mathematical abstraction: ethics, and its substance (life!) too has dimensions beyond a narrow anthropocentric reach.

If I take the ethical vastness and comprehensiveness into account, I am able to see that every
action I can do, and every wrong I don’t do, wherever I am, has an impact on the life around
me. Taking the interest of all life into a wide ethical (in a sense of setting oneself in a creative relation) consideration makes the action of the individual meaningful.

When I see that human progress is built mostly on a destructive relationship towards life – that we use and degrade to “resources” – I should be able to realize that the step I have to do, is to take up a plant-based ethical (radical antispeciesist and vegan) lifestyle and go further from that point on.

***

Neo-vegan perspectives – 4

Neoveganism, pluralism and antispeciesism

It should be normal for animal rights advocates (with that I mean people primarily or partially
interested or active in the global animal lights and liberation, etc. movement) to accept different positions, without assuming that divergence would harm the cause. No need to say that exempt from such a form of mutual tolerance would be people who claim to be AR but practically advocate theories and practices harmful to nonhuman animals (euthanasia of “stray” feral animals, “humane” slaughter, hidden forms of speciesism, mild speciesism … ).

I often notice that there exists a self-prescribed narrowness in parts of the AR/AL movement
which hinders the necessary plurality of expressed opinions for the cause. Naturally people hold different opinions about issues, especially when it comes to the details of something that could be described as a newly established consciousness as we have and develop it in the human-nonhuman animal relation today.

Why should animal rights be exempt from a highly diversified discussion such as we normally expect and have practically on every other big ethical, political and rights issue? Finding the truth (the acceptable truths of many insights) upon which to build a reasonable common grounds that reflects the needs of reality, finding a suitable and fruitful political and
also legal language, and a language of liberation needs a full discourse made up of all our individual opinions. When we take our individuality away from our political agency (speech, thought and action) in our daily lives, we lose exactly that which enables us to make progress. Progress is plurality – the exchange of many powers and how they can synergize.

It’s understandable when you take a look at the animal rights movement at its single place in history – possessing a newly understood form of an extended “beyond-social” interspecies context – that people are likely to assume that they would need to follow a school of thought or political opinion. In reality though animal rights is a phenomenon as fundamental as human
rights, so basic and immediate to the individual existence that every person can become clear about her own understanding of basic rights terms in a valid way and that every person can figure out herself how she weighs out what’s right and what’s wrong in her own “common sense” rights-terms.

The relation towards nonhuman animals is ultimately an immediate one, it’s a social connection in a new, antispeciesist way. And I think we should take it as such, if we truly are for human and animal liberation.

On a basis of accepting the presupposition that

a.) we can relate to nonhuman animals in a reasonable way obviously, and
b.) that the relation to nonhuman animals can thus be handled from the individual human in a
similar way in which an individual human can assess human rights issues by applying her
own common sense,

we can take our position of defence when we are addressing the “speciesist lobby”, which usually argues that there exist decisive barriers between the “values” of human and nonhuman animal life, a notion established on the premise that humans have the right to simply give the nonhuman animal world their definitions – in all detail (the result of which is mass murder on the biological argument).

We as animal rights/liberation/autonomy activists can constructively and positively relate to nonhuman animals, and we side with their interests from our position as fellow (human) animal beings. Practiced anti-speciesism to its best level is an ongoing learning process which makes us mature and responsible as human beings or better as basic individuals. Our engagement and fight for the legal and earth-political rights to live, to possess habitat, to be a rights holder under nonhumancentric terms, will re-establish the integrity of an ongoing existential relationship we have with nonhuman animals. And this amounts to an entire paradigm-shift.

***

Neo-vegan perspectives – 5

The face of an animal rights revolution, call it total liberation … it is about making these paradigm shifts

The uncountable deaths each day, every second, are the factual individual nonhuman animal victims that a human humancentrically driven full destructive force are directed against. We have to phrase clearly that speciesism is not just an accidental heritage of our human past which supposedly took place as “hunters and gatherers”, though the question remains open if in fact all human cultures have been hunters at some stage. Speciesism means, in the past inasmuch as in the present, a war by means of denial of rights, namely the right to live and exist freely, that is being waged against nonhuman animals and their world.

The majority of the ‘human group’ determines how this world is to be explained and understood. We, as humans (in a collective sense), don’t accept that concepts which are not born out of a human logic (again, in a collective sense) and which are not shaped by our human perceptions and rationalizations can in fact exist. The revolution for animal rights, animal liberation or a acknowledgement of animal autonomy means to set forth that nonhuman animals have their very ways in which they shape this world. Their ways – their integrity in the natural sphere – need to be protected by rights that we as humans will have to enforce within the scope exclusively of human destructivity. That would at least take the burden of human oppression from the nonhuman animal ‘realm’.

On the ethical side we can state that: in whichever context nonhuman animals are forced to live and to die in right now, their integrity can’t be stripped away from them – since in a fundamental and important sense nothing can negate their independent meaning.

What happens when our speciesist societies confine, torture and kill nonhuman animals is that
Humans collectively claim a total might over the physical life of nonhuman animals, in the final consequence.

Animal rights means to continuously work on the paths towards an anti-humancentrist human society in which the integrity of all animal life and the integrity of the entire natural world are being protected against so called “human interests”; which are in reality profane collective enmities towards “everything” and everyone who is not a human but a nonhuman animal and their natural living contexts.

And finally animal liberation should also mean the deconstruction of speciesist theories: Before the final consequence of physical harm and destruction we need to address the reasons and causes of the collective humancentric enmities and desires to subject animal-others and ‘nature’.

Jim Sinclair: If you love something, you don’t kill it

If you love something, you don’t kill it

Jim Sinclair

[This is a response to Temple Grandin’s writing about her work in the slaughter industry, especially as described in Thinking in Pictures.]

If you love something, you don’t kill it. I didn’t need to spend time in a squeeze box to learn that. Love is not killing.

If you know what another being feels–not just how you feel when you touch it–then you know that living things want to remain alive. It doesn’t matter if they’re not afraid of death before they know what’s going to happen to them. In the moment when the killing happens, they know, and they want to stay alive. I have seen this, and I have felt death happen. I haven’t seen as much of death as someone who is obsessively drawn to slaughter factories, but I’ve seen enough to know. Life does not consent to be killed. I don’t need a Ph.D. in animal science to recognize that.

Dying as a natural process is not the same as killing a healthy living creature. I have witnessed sudden death from injury, and gradual death from aging or disease. They’re not the same. (I have not witnessed deliberately inflicted death, because I will not stand by and allow killing to happen in my presence.) It’s irrelevant if a middle-aged scientist can say that she doesn’t fear death, that she understands it as a natural part of life. Almost all the beings whose lives she helps end are immature or just barely mature. Almost none of them are close to natural death. They’re not ready to die. If someone were to shoot or stab or electrocute the middle-aged scientist today, she might find that she’s not ready to die either.

If you understand life, you know that it wants to continue. If you feel life throbbing under your touch, you know it’s desecration to set your hand to stop that living pulse. If you love something, you don’t kill it.

There’s a special technique involved in tying a hangman’s noose so the victim is killed instantly by a broken neck, rather than slowly by strangulation. I suppose it’s part of a hangman’s professional expertise to learn to tie this knot properly. That expertise doesn’t make the hangman a caring or compassionate person.

The hangman’s knot, the guillotine, the electric chair, the gas chamber, and the lethal injection were all designed to make deliberately inflicted death less painful to the victim. But I’ve never heard the inventors or the users of these technologies hailed as great humanitarians. I’ve never heard them praised for their great empathy toward the lives they’ve ended.

Certainly it takes some ingenuity to invent new equipment. I’m a pretty smart person, but my expertise with knots is limited to being able to tie my shoes, to make a slip knot and a square knot. I tie these knots the way others taught me to tie them; I’ve never invented a new kind of knot by myself. If I were to try to design a knot that could quickly and painlessly kill someone, I’d never be able to figure it out. Whoever invented that knot had a type of mechanical creativity and skill that I don’t have.

But if I did have it, I’d use it for other purposes. I wouldn’t need to invent a way to kill with a knot, because I would never be willing to participate in any way in killing a bound and defenseless person. Skill and ingenuity are not the same as empathy and caring.
And love is not the same thing as killing. If you love something, you don’t kill it. It’s as simple as that.

Copyright (c) 1998 Jim Sinclair

Compassion and its dilemma

‘Compassion’ is something you speak of (and ask for on behalf of someone) from a position of privilege.

If we have an intersectional view on nonhuman animal oppression and see how oppressive mechanisms functionally interact, then we might understand that the discussion about nonhumans needs to be brought on the level of justice, liberation, autonomous dignity, etc.

In other words nonhuman animal issues need to be brought onto a political level – in legal and ethical terms – while ‘compassion’ tends to simply stand for an individual sentiment; in this case granted from a privileged human standpoint.

Renuardine, vegans of color / DE

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