* From guest blogger, Arden.*
One argument that supports Ethical Vegetarianism is made on the behalf of animal welfare. Two
premises of this argument assert that animal agriculture results in large amounts of suffering, and because we ought not cause suffering to others for no apparent reason, we ought to adopt a non-meat diet.
This argument is primarily based on how animals are standardly treated in large-scale farming operations, especially concentrated feed operations (CAFOS), and emphasizes the empirical claim that animals are sentient creatures that have the capacity to suffer and feel pain. This claim is supported by evidence obtained through physiological and behavioral science, as well as evolutionary biology, that justifies that animals have the same underlying physiology- e.g the neurological system- and express the same behaviors as humans when they are in situations that cause pain. Sandler discusses how animals in CAFOS are deemed and treated as parts of an industrial process to produce the most meat possible for the lowest cost possible. These practices along with the high concentration of animals, results in animal suffering.
Causing such large amounts of animal suffering for no apparent reason is not morally permissible. Animals are not choosing to suffer in the same ways in which we do by going to the dentist or getting flu shots. They have no choice in the matter, and rendered to an unnecessary amount of suffering under the oppressive environmental conditions that are created by concentrated feeding operations. Humans are the only individuals who benefit from animal agriculture. I believe that we ought to not eat meat, especially not any that is produced by an industrialized farm, considering the amount of suffering it causes for mere pleasure of consumption.