From guest blogger, Tessa.
This week I wanted to focus on animal rights and speciesism. Personally, I am probably one of the very few that agrees with Singer’s views and actually practices them. He thinks that we should not have equal rights with animals, but we should have equal consideration of pain and suffering. In this case, in order to practice Singer’s beliefs, one would have to be a full-on vegetarian. Singer thinks we all need to stop giving the industry support, and that testing on animals (as well as eating) is showing a large bias for our species. Singer’s argument is that animals have emotions/desires and appear to my capable of enjoying a good life, so their pain should be taken into consideration equally. Although I have been a vegetarian for seven years, and agree that we should not place pain upon animals, I do still eat dairy. Singer does not believe in eating dairy, because it is still using the animal. My stance is not as intense as his, and I believe it is okay if it is not harming the animals. While I eat cage-free, organic eggs, I’m still not sure that the animals are being treated as well as the farmers claim. Because of this, my actions still would probably not be good enough in Singer’s eyes. All in all, my choice to abstain from meat for 7 years has helped our environment (ecological footprint, methane production, etc.) and also my health. It is not clear exactly how much ‘help’ I have been throughout those years, but at least I know I am trying my best to do my part to protect animal rights and help ensure environmental sustainability.