Is eating meat morally wrong

Discussion in 'Ethics, Morality, & Justice' started by Theoryofrelativity, Mar 14, 2006.

  1. Theoryofrelativity Banned Banned

    Copied from the web:

    "Pain in Fish

    Fishing means intense pain and stress for millions of fish every year. Fish are treated in ways which would cause an outrage if cute, furry creatures were involved - but fish suffer just as much.

    Pain begins when the hook pierces the mouth and the fish is reeled in. Many people remove the hook while the fish is still alive. Anyone who has ever had a fish hook stuck in their own flesh needs no convincing that this is extremely painful.
    Pain is further increased if large fish are landed with a gaff hook. This large hook on a handle rips into the flesh of the live fish to pull it out of the water.

    Livebaiting is another barbaric activity that increases pain. A live small fish is threaded up as bait for larger fish. Here is one description of how to do this, taken from a fishing magazine:

    "The needle is passed through the front of the eye socket of both eyes. The material is then pulled through so that the hook sits on the head of the baitfish."
    Remember that the baitfish is alive and feels pain, just like a dog or a cat (or indeed a human) would.


    Once out of the water, fish suffocate rather like we do underwater. In their death throes fish writhe, gasping and flapping their gills as they desperately try to get oxygen. Anyone who has ever been unable to breathe even for a short time won't need convincing that this is a terrifying experience.

    Intense stress is also caused by livebaiting and "playing" fish on the line, as is done particularly with big game fish such as marlin. Research has compared the behaviour of fish in these two situations with the behaviour of fish in a tank into which alarm substance had been released. Alarm substance is normally released by injured fish. This chemical causes panic in other fish, who flee as quickly as possible. In the experiment, the behaviour produced by the alarm substance was very similar to behaviour produced by livebaiting and game fishing. So, these activities cause panic, like alarm substance, but the fish can't escape and the panic may go on for hours.
    Attitudes to Fish

    It's hard for fish to arouse our compassion. They can't show their agony by screaming. They don't have the sad eyes of a seal pup or a dog.
    In an article in The Adelaide Advertiser, Professor Bill Runciman, professor of anaesthesia and intensive care at Adelaide University, was quoted as saying:

    "Fish constitute the greatest source of confused thinking and inconsistency on earth at the moment with respect to pain. You will get people very excited about dolphins because they are mammals, and about horses and dogs, if they are not treated properly. At the same time you will have fishing competitions on the River Murray at which thousands of people snare fish with hooks and allow them to asphyxiate on the banks, which is a fairly uncomfortable and miserable death."
    Since fish have the same nerve endings, the same chemicals for transmitting and blocking pain, and the same receptor sites for anxiety-reducing chemicals as mammals, it is absolute nonsense to suggest that fish do not feel pain or fear.


    Animal experimenters acknowledge that fish feel pain and stress. In one of its newsletters, the Australian Council for the Care of Animals in Research and Teaching advised researchers to reduce the pain and stress suffered by cold-blooded vertebrates (including fish) used in experiments.
    The article recommended that: "humane restraint, analgesia and anaesthetic should be adopted whenever necessary. Adequate levels of analgesia reduce apprehension and stress, and decrease or suppress the perception of painful stimuli."

    Fish Feel Pain

    If fish can't show their pain, how can we know whether they feel pain at all? There is very strong scientific evidence to show that they do.

    Fish have nerve endings near the skin which are very similar to those of humans and other mammals. We all have receptor cells (called nociceptors) near the skin, which are stimulated by events severe enough to cause damage to body tissues. The lips and mouth of fish are particularly well supplied with nerve endings.

    Fish produce the same pain-transmitting chemicals as humans. There are two main chemicals involved. When a nerve ending is damaged, a substance called bradykinin is released. This causes the nerve cell to fire, sending an electrical impulse along the nerve. When bradykinin is released near the skin, a second chemical, called substance P, is released near the spinal cord.
    Both substances are known to be involved in transmitting pain. For example, if bradykinin is injected into humans, it causes intense pain, even if a local anaesthetic is used. Both bradykinin and substance P are found in mammals, birds, frogs and fish.

    Fish produce the same pain-blocking substances as humans. When in severe pain, humans and other vertebrates (animals with backbones) produce pain-killing chemicals called endorphins. These endorphins block pain by stopping the release of substance P.
    Fish Feel Anxiety

    For any chemical to be able to affect our brain, there must be special areas in the brain, called receptor sites, to which the chemical can attach. Fish, like mammals, have receptor sites for anxiety-reducing chemicals, such as the valium group of drugs. Dr Andrew Rowan, a Dean of Veterinary Science, has said: "This suggests that most vertebrates are capable of experiencing a form of anxiety which is physiologically similar to that seen in humans."


    You may elect to disagree, if as vegetarian who eats fish, these facts may not suit your higher moral ground.
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2006
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  3. perplexity Banned Banned

    Last edited: Mar 13, 2007
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  5. Theoryofrelativity Banned Banned

    TAlk about the pot calling the kettle black, look over your posts and see what you accused meat eaters said 'one step away from killing iraqui civilians', you are full of it!

    Libel does not apply here, I was expressing an opinion ..hence the words...'I take it' meaning 'I understood your post to mean xyz..' Maybe you should read about the definition of libel before spouting off about it.

    By the way re your eyes thing, does that mean if its blind you'll eat it?
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  7. Theoryofrelativity Banned Banned

    do u believe fish are blind?
  8. perplexity Banned Banned

    Last edited: Mar 13, 2007
  9. TheAlphaWolf Registered Senior Member

    Sheesh, calm down. I know you want to become a vegetarian and all. My point was that it READS like you are stereotyping vegetarians in a bad way, as hypocrites, etc.
    Well, when fetuses first feel pain is controversial. Here's what says:
    "Many physicians and researchers of fetal development believe that synaptic connections within the fetus' brain are necessary to perceive pain. These are not formed until well into the third trimester, when fewer than 1% of all pregnancy terminations are done.
    Others, who tend to be pro-life advocates, believe that a fetus as early as 7 weeks after conception can feel pain. Thus, they believe that a fetus can feel pain part way through the first trimester, when most abortions are performed

    Some of the experts' opinions may be so heavily biased by their pro-life/pro-choice stance that they are incapable of making objective observations."
    As for the second part of your quote, hardly ANYONE agrees with late-term abortions. I know I don't, I just agree up to the first trimester.
    Basically what I've said.
  10. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member

    I would advise moralistic vegetarianism advocates to read through Huxley's Jesting Pilate.

    Another way of looking at it is to recall a t-shirt about oral sex and morality: "If God hadn't intended for me to eat p@ssy, He wouldn't have made it look so much like a taco." Given that many species have been naturally endowed with a vegetarian diet, does that make them more moral than humans? Given that humans have evolved eating meat, and that our bodies are equipped for it, do we presume that our morals are wiser than nature, God, and evolution?

    My body responds well to a diet of starches and meat. You'd think, watching me cook, that I would be a cholesterol risk. But, no ... my numbers came back in good shape only about a month and a half ago. Then again, I'm a meat snob; the "sausage" I eat is essentially pork's version of hamburger. I don't do chorizo (e.g. lymph and snout). Bacon, white fish, beef, and occasionally poultry. Did a bacon burger last night after catching a killer show of The Stabbs, The Makers, and Mudhoney. Warm. Tasty. Stabilizing. A great comfort, and what my body mostly demands. Went well atop the beer.
  11. Hapsburg Hellenistic polytheist Valued Senior Member

    On the note of bacon...put sugar over a few strips of bacon, and cook it in the microwave. The sugar caramelizes, and it tastes so friggin good.
  12. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member

    Maple syrup, too. Balances the scofield heat if you're into pepper.
  13. Theoryofrelativity Banned Banned


    I said something similar to my ex wheh he wanted circumsise our baby boy,
    Me: "does your religion believe itself to be more superior than God?"

    Him:"NNNNNNOOOOOOOOOOOO " He emphatically replied

    " But you are presuming to alter his design? Do you think God is not capable through evolution of altering it if its not required? Are you more knowing as a man than God?"

    He is now a muslim who is against circumsision!

    Humerous reply, likes it.
  14. TheAlphaWolf Registered Senior Member

    sigh, people are stupid.
    "Well, you are not omniscient therefore you must be wrong"
    What a great argument... GREAT logic....right... that is an idiotic argument.

    Just admit you're stupid and give up, and you WILL be stupid.

    to make my reply short:
    1) vegetarians on average live longer than meat eaters, and speaking of nature... humans being vegetarian is better for nature.
    2) God is a stupid concept and cannot be used for this for obvious reasons... and besides, god and evolution? either god had something to do with us eating meat, or evolution did. It wasn't both.
    3) We evolved to eat meat forever ago, doesn't mean today it's better.
  15. TW Scott Minister of Technology Registered Senior Member

    Actually the only brainless wonder I have seen here would be you if there was one.

    Vegetarians do not live any longer than smart meat eaters, the ones who know how to moderate their meat intake. It just seems that way becuase a life that sucks takes forever.

    God is not a stupid concept. Believing in a higher power has helped billions use the strength they have to live better lives.

    Actually I think we evolved to eat plants as well as meat.
  16. Hapsburg Hellenistic polytheist Valued Senior Member


    And those billions rely on a fictional being and an old storybook rather than taking the responsibility to make thier own choices, thier own decisions, and take control of thier lives rather than wasting it bowing down to something that simple isn't there.

    Also agree.
  17. I don't know It's the pun police, run! Registered Senior Member

    Maybe vegetarians live longer because they're more forced to be aware of what they eat, and often compile a balanced diet as they "change sides" - because it gives them awareness. I bet people who've just been vegetarians all their lives, in communities where that's normal don't necessarily live longer.
  18. Theoryofrelativity Banned Banned

    NUTS is all I can say, re veggies living longer...prove it? I have NEVER heard this one before! Thats a new one! FISH eaters live longest and anyone who eats fish is NOT vegetarian! (Whether they choose to delude themselves by calling themselves one or not, they a e NOT)
  19. TheAlphaWolf Registered Senior Member

    ... i'm talking about real numbers here, not relative feelings.

    And has caused billions to die in idiotic wars, witch burning, etc has caused many others to be stupid and ignorant, has caused countless other things.

    Um... either they deleted it from wikipedia, or I was mistaken (or I can't find it right now). If I was mistaken, sorry. I might have deduced that they live longer from the health benefits:
    As an example, vegetarians tend to have lower body mass indices, lower levels of cholesterol, lower blood pressure, and less incidence of heart disease, hypertension, some forms of cancer, type 2 diabetes, renal disease, osteoporosis, dementias such as Alzheimer’s Disease and other disorders that may be diet-related.

    The Journal of the ADA also reports that children raised as vegans have approximately 20 more points of IQ than average. (source: JADA 1980; 76:142-7)
    holy crap, 20 points is a big difference!
  20. MadMaxReborn Life Through My Eyes Registered Senior Member

    As Mark Twain famously said, "There are lies, damn lies, and statistics."

    This is reaffirmation that Mark Twain was correct. If you just accept that statement that Vegans are smarter, then you haven't given it much thought. There are many factors that could have caused that statistic that has nothing at all to do with diet.

    Vegans are not well represented in all societies, in all classes, in all cultures. Vegans are typically middle-class, white, suburban, college graduates. They live in better school systems, and have/are parents better equipped to nurture their children.

    Many cultures are completely dependent on meat as the major source of food. This can be for economic, religious or geographic reasons.

    I would also tie into this observation the statistics on living longer and general health.

  21. TheAlphaWolf Registered Senior Member

    JADA stands for the journal of the American Dietetic Association, meaning they did not take samples from other countries.
    Well, isn't that the whole point?
    veganism is not something that's in the genes. If it was passed on through the genes, I would see your point. It's not.
    and about living longer and general health, it's been shown that the actual eating of vegetables can reduce some things while the actual eating of meat can make them higher. What a coincidence that vegetarians in general do have lower X's and meat eathers have higher Y's, exactly what you'd expect. It's not some random thing like them getting into fewer car crashes or being robbed more/less. What they look at IS caused because of what they eat.
    Besides, who the hell do you think they are? they're not elementary students. They know how to take data and interpret it, I'm guessing they went to college for that. And I might reconsider if it was just one small organization nobody's heard about, but it's more than one, big and respected organizations.
  22. TheAlphaWolf Registered Senior Member

    on an unrelated note, I was reading my AP biology book (campbell reece, 7th edition I think) and it said "It takes 4.8 Kg of grain to produce a Kg of grain fed beef"
  23. Facial Valued Senior Member

    Isn't it the other way around? (I'm thinking of prosimians here)

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