Cecil reveals our glaring moral inconsistencies
Few issues cause more discomfort and hostility than openly questioning the practice of breeding, feeding, watering, and slaughtering tens of billions of sentient animals annually, which we do today in the total absence of necessity.
I want to be liked as much as the next gal, so when posting on my personal social media accounts, I try not to alienate myself from friends and family, the majority of whom love animals — or at least wouldn’t intentionally hurt one — but who have not (yet!) peeled back the layers that normalize the pervasive atrocities of animal agriculture affecting animals, people, and planet. For better or worse, I mostly compartmentalize these issues for discussions with like-minded folks. I’m working on that.
But the public’s justifiably outraged reaction to a lion named Cecil being killed by a hunter who paid $50,000 to do so makes it difficult to remain silent about the glaring moral inconsistencies that recently plastered many Facebook feeds.
Animal Rights BC (Before Cecil)
Here’s the deal. A man paid someone to allow him to kill an animal for pleasure.
Most people, on the other hand, pay people to kill animals for them, also for their pleasure.
Yes, in our society today, we eat animals for pleasure, not necessity. More on that in a minute.
It’s a wonderful thing when people speak up for human rights concerning specific races, genders, or sexualities. Most likely, someone who does so is not then proceeding to intentionally exploit humans outside of the group they’re defending at that particular moment. That would just be ridiculous and incredibly hypocritical. Can you imagine, for example, someone with a rainbow profile picture enthusiastically posting a racist photo?
Yet when most people speak up for the rights of certain animals — often dogs, particularly those left in hot cars — they then turn around and proceed to intentionally exploit animals outside of the group they’re defending at that moment, particularly those species they’ve been hypnotized by society to assign little to no moral consideration. This is equally ridiculous and hypocritical as the above example.
For example, over the past few week, I have seen people expressing their outrage over the intentional killing of a defenseless lion hours later posting a photo of themselves chowing down on the body of an intentionally killed, defenseless cow.
What we call a cheeseburger is actually totally vulnerable, sentient, heartbreakingly docile bovines (usually hundreds of them per patty!) whose ground-up remains are so casually consumed, covered in the congealed mammary secretions of their own species, whose formula-fed offspring likely lived out their unimaginable weeks on this Earth alone and imprisoned in a veal crate.
Amongst my many online vegan acquaintances brave enough to point out this glaring cognitive disconnect on social media, I’m seeing two common, knee-jerk reactions from their typically infuriated and offended non-veg friends:
1. It’s perfectly okay to kill (certain) animals that are plentiful, but not those that are endangered.
This would mean that animals have the right to exist, but not to live.
2. It’s okay to kill (certain) animals as long as their bodies are used in some way, especially for (unnecessary) food.
This is saying it’s not okay to kill or use just any animal for food, just certain species as dictated by society. After all, most Westerners would be horrified if someone slaughtered a local unwanted shelter dog to barbecue, defending it by saying