OK, Stoid, Hunting v. free range beef

But don’t deny that what you are enjoying is killing animals. And if you feel the need to try and call it something else, maybe you have more of an issue with it than you are willing to admit? Why resist the accurate description that you enjoy killing? You do, no need to be ashamed of it or deny it or try to prettify it
I’m not ashamed. I enjoy killing animals!

**(Except perhaps for insects, and I assure you that for every one I killed, I ended up feeding a thousand others. Sigh. I sucked at gardening.) **
So that makes it OK does it? If I poison a slug so it dies a slow death of metaldehyde that’s OK? Or if I spray a grasshopper with chlorpyrifos so it’s voluntary nervous system shuts down but it’s brain is still working perfectly as it dies of exhaustion and dehydration over period of days that’s OK because I’m feeding more. You have a very interesting way of looking at the world. Do you apply this ’standard’ to other human beings? If not why? They are after all members of other nations. You seem to be implying that if I kill someone from the USA then that’s fine so long as I feed a thousand others, after all the USA is another nation too. You are a truly weird and frightening individual if you think that torturing an animal is fine so long as you feed some others. Where do you draw the line here? Is it OK to torture if I feed nine-hundred? One-hundred? Fifty? Ten? One? Or does it vary with species? What standards are you applying here?

But they do not have to turn the practice of killing the other living things into a ritualized amusement.
I don’t have any hunting rituals, any more than you have clothing rituals. Who in the developed world has a hunting ritual?

(I’m not going to get excited about cockroaches, we all draw lines and I have mine.)
And they conveniently end at exactly the point where you cease to enjoy it. What about rodents? Thousands of them are killed by poisons that cause their joints and internal organs to fill with blood. It’s hideously painful according to people who have suffered from anti-coagulant poisoning. If you ate only fresh vegetables and fruit then there wouldn’t be even one-millionth the number of mice killed. I assume you do this. Or is it OK to kill rodents slowly because you enjoy bread? Bread is only a ritual food, why do mice have to die for your ritual food. You don’t need it. Or do you consider bread to be a pressing need?

**I never wish for any higher life form to ever suffer physically or psychologically any more than the absolute minimum possible in order to serve only our most pressing needs. **
See above. Are you prepared to modify your behaviour and forego the activities you enjoy

**In other words, yes, we can raise catlle and pigs and chickens and turkeys to eat, but we must not torment them in life (and we DO) and we must make their deaths fast and as pain-free as we can. (which, by the way, makes their meat better anyway, so it is in our interest to do so.) **
Must? Why must? I agree with the principal, but why the imperative?

**Beyond this, I think there are no good reasons to cause the death and suffering of animals. I think it is our job, as the rulers of the planet, to protect the “other nations” that share it with us. It is an astonishing and marvelous place, this planet of ours, and shame on us for treating it so shabbily as we have up to now. We must do better. **
Again with the ‘must’. If you agree that there are no good reasons to cause death and suffering to animals then I assume you don’t eat bread, don’t drive a car, don’t wear make-up, wear only second-hand clothes and live in a single room high-rise apartment. Doing otherwise will invariably lead to the death and suffering of animals. Or is it OK to cause death and suffering if you get pleasure out of the end result? Using your computer right now is not a pressing need is it. Yet the mining practices required to get the glass and metal and the harvesting of the oil and coal needed to provide the electricity kills animals every day. Why is that OK, is it because you didn’t do it personally?

**On the one hand, we are supposedly “better” and “more important” than all the other animals on earth. That’s why it is supposedly ok for us to use animals for reseach, make them perform in circuses, and stare at them in zoos. Well, why is that? Because we’re smarter? Because we are able to rise above our base instincts and think ? Because we have something more on our minds than what’s for dinner? **
Who said any of that. I don’t think I’m better than any animal. I also know the animal doesn’t think it’s better than I am. I will do whatever is necessary to maximise my reproductive capacity and the animal will do the same. I draw the line at hurting other humans only. You apparently have a very vague line drawn that implies you can justify anything so long as you don’t do the killing first hand. I can justify using animals in experiments precisely because I am not better than they are. I have no duty to them, only to my people and myself. If they make me more successful then fine. If my instincts make it difficult to bear seeing an animal in pain then that is my call. I certainly don’t claim the right to force that on other people.
**Well, there ya go. If we’re better because we’re not tied to our instincts (which we are not…at least most of us. Snort), then we have to act accordingly, recognize the value of life on earth, and treat it with the honor it demands. We can’t just cheese out and say “hey man, I’m only a animul myself…hehehehe” **
WTF. You aren’t tied to your instincts. So you don’t live in an enclosed dwelling because that would require the killing of animals by habitat destruction. You sleep in a bed-roll under the open stars. You don’t live in a city because the congregation of humans has far greater environmental impacts than humans living in groups. You live 50 kilometre outside the city and sleep by the roadside and cycle to work very day. But you only ask enough money to survive on, because the instinct to acquire assets leads to the consumption of natural resources that leads to the death of animals. You refuse to have sex because a) it can contribute to disease transmission that could cause the death of other people and because the use of birth control leads to the destruction of animal habitats and b) because there is a chance you might reproduce and the extra mouth would require that animals be killed, and there is no good reason to cause the death and suffering of animals. The urge to reproduce is only an instinctive one. You never wear more clothes than is required for hygiene/health and the local laws and always the most cost-effective forms of clothing. Cosmetics of any kind are out. After all attempting to gain social position and sexual attractiveness are only instincts. They’re certainly not rational.
Do you really think all humans all over the world live in very similar societies because we all independently came up with the idea. Come off it, we’re social animals by instinct, we’re shelter building animals by instinct, we’re asset gatherers by instinct, we’re social climbers by instinct.

I always like to see someone take a moral stance with no sign of double standards, and with all the consequences of their stance carefully considered.

I think frank Herbert said it best: ‘You can always spot the moral choices. That’s where you abandon self-interest.’

Stoid, I am shocked. Am I getting this right? Do you EAT MEAT?!?!?! How can this be?!?!?! I thought you were this pure-hearted, bleeding heart liberal. And you EAT MEAT??? I did not read every word on this thread, but that is the impression I get. That you EAT MEAT. Oh my gosh. Wonders never cease.

Well, I will offer my viewpoint, as a bleeding heart vegetarian. (Obviously more bleeding heart than Stoid, who does actually eat the flesh of our little animal friends!!!)

I figure, if you eat meat, you are really in no position to get all high-and-mighty about the deaths of animals. YOU CAUSE the death of animals, by eating them. Sure, I do too, even though I am veggie. I use film for my camera that is made of gelatin, I use products that have animal by-products. My sister is a diabetic, and she would not be alive if it weren’t for animal testing. So we all use animals. But some of us choose not to EAT the flesh of animals, which does minimize our responsibility for animal death. So there. Hmph.

As far as hunting goes - I am not crazy about it, naturally. I can’t figure out why people would like it as a sport only, of course. (I do NOT understand these people who kill animals primarily so they can put their stuffed heads on display. Horrid, horrid.)

But - if some guy who lives out in the boonies figures that if he gets a deer or two a season he can extend his meagre food budget, I don’t get all high and mighty about it. It’s about survival, I think. I wish they’d choose not to do it, but I don’t think that it is any worse than a person who buys their dead animal flesh in a grocery store. At least the guy who hunted his food didn’t torture the poor animal first (I would hope) like they do with factory farming. I think we all know some of the atrocities that occur in commercial farming. So actually, if you ask me which is a “lesser evil”, from my standpoint, much of hunting is less creepy than commercial farming. At least the animal lived a decent, free life before they get blown away. Those poor creatures who are born and bred for human consumption often do not have ONE DECENT DAY in their life. (I agree with you about that, Stoid - if people are going to produce animals for meat - they at least should do it a little more humanely.)

I know this sounds kind of bizarre coming from a vegetarian, I know. But I don’t have a lot of respect for a person who is too squeamish and “delicate” to get their meat “from the source”, so to speak. (But they want to eat it anyway, just in a sanitized pre-packaged form.) And yet some of these people look down their noses at people who hunt for food? What is this bullshit? Both types of people cause the death of innocent animals. In fact, if I had the power to choose to make only one practice illegal, I’d choose to make factory farming illegal, instead of hunting. I think if people were FORCED to kill their own meat, a lot less people would be eating meat. And that would mean more vegetarians! :smiley:

Why I hunt:

  1. I like the camping the outdoors and all that happy crappy.

  2. Hunting is an application of skill. It’s not easy. It’s a challenge. After my first deer with a rifle, I took up the bow. This past season marked my 6th straight year without getting a deer, yet I enjoyed every minute I hunted.
    When I finally do succeed I will enjoy that as well.

As Deep Purple said “It’s not the kill it’s the thrill of the chase.”

People who say they don’t buy into the camping, woods, etc. answer are full of shit. Why put the basketball through the hoop? Why not just dribble around on the croncrete, and run around with your friends?

Because then there is no fucking point!

  1. I like Venison jerky and bologna.

  2. It’s none of your business. The fact that I enjoy hunting doesn’t give you any more right to judge me then anyone should judge someone who is, say, a porn purveyor for example.

  3. The hunting licenses and fees pay to maintain wilderness, trail, and wildlife.

  4. There are no natural predators against deer left. If we don’t cull them, they will overpopulate, and then real suffering begins.

  5. In a basic way, it makes me feel that I’m fulfilling my provider role.

  6. I like to fix my own car where possible, cut my own hair, do my own home repairs, etc. It gives me satisfaction to get my own meat.

The implication that I somehow get off on killing Bambi, or that it is some pseudo-sexual violence thing is something I consider to be a pretty serious insult.

The idea that I do so is contempuous and to me, someone putting forth that idea shows a blind and willfull ingorance .

How can you judge something you nothing about?

Asmodean has it right:

The reasoning of a bully:

The Rapist: “Why do I rape? Because I can!”

The Warmonger: “Why do I make war? Because I can!”

The Wifebeater: “Why do I beat the shit out of my wife? Because I can!”

The child abuser: “Why do I use my children as sexual toys? Well, they are small and weak and defenseless and I can!”

So we torture and maim and destroy animals and the habitats they require to live. Why? Because we can. But that hardly makes for good morality, now does it?

As for importance, there are many possible answers, depending on the point of view. For those who profess belief in a Creator (and that means a significant majority of people) the answer is easy: God. For the rest, there are many answers. The easiest is ourselves…do you want to rob your children and grandchildren of the beautidul earth that you have had the good fortune to know? Would you sentence them knowingly to a life of nothing but minimum standards of life on earth…a place where our needs are all met, but nothing is left of the natural world to speak of?

Cartainly value is a subjective thing. Would you have it that we are the only ones to determine it, and that what value we determine there to be is the least possible?

If these things are not plain enough to you, then I fear making them so is beyond my powers…

stoid

I sure hope that I’m mistaken and you’re not equating hunting with Wife-beating, child-abuse, rape, or warmongering.

You can enjoy something without it being a psuedo-sexual orgasm replacement. Completing a difficult task is it’s own reward. Ever make a three-point shot in a basketball game? Complete a 1,000 piece jig-saw puzzle? You can enjoy those things without it being weird and sick. It’s the same thing with hunting an animal and killing it.

FWIW, I’m a shooter (Cowboy Action Shooting), but not a hunter. Mainly because I’m too lazy to schlepp all over the 8,000 ft high mountains hereabouts.

It appears the usual is happening…people find a few sentences that press their buttons and they wig out. It is also plain that “gray” 'is an unknown shade around here.

I can’t imagine how much plainer I can possibly be, but I’ll give it one more shot.

1- I think killing is a deeply disturbing an unpleasant act, in any and every context. But I recognize that it is sometimes necessary. Given that it is a disgusting and upsetting job, it baffles me why anyone would volunteer to do it if they didn’t have to. Given that it is such a disgusting and disturbing thing to do, it follows that I would be, shall we say, less than attracted to folks who choose to not only do it, but do so with gusto and glee, viewing a disturbing and unpleasant act of violence and/or destruction of life as some kind of entertainment.

2- I believe it is our moral and ethical imperative, as rulers of the earth, to honor the animals we share it with by reducing or eliminating pain and suffering, both physical and psychological. I have already outlined what this means specifically. I believe that to do otherwise diminishes us.

Choose to misunderstand me if you like, or perhaps you have no choice in the matter. Either way, I am unable to clarify it any further than that.
We all have yardsticks by which we measure others. This is one of mine. I make no apology for it.
stoid

** But some of us choose not to EAT the flesh of animals, which does minimize our responsibility for animal death. So there. Hmph. **
I hate to bring you down here yosemitebabe but by obtaining all your protein from vegetables and all your vitamin B from fungus you are almost certainly contributing to the deaths of far more animals than if you didn’t. Soybean and wheat farms are ecological deserts. All animal habitat is sestroyed and the animals with them. Any animals that might re-colonise the area are eradicated instantly if they are herbivorous. In one season a soybean farm producing equivalent protein to a free-range beef station would kill far more animals. Then the storage process kills countless moths, weevils and mice that beef processing doesn’t. This kind of ‘minimising my responsibility’ is a cop-out. You are either doing something wrong or you ain’t. I can’t quite understand the logic in saying ”I’m doing something I acknowledge is wrong, but I’m still better than you because you are doing more of it to different victims and you won’t acknowledge it is wrong.’ In most legal systems if you admit that you knew what you were doing was wrong but proceeded anyway the punishment is harsher than if you can honestly plead ignorance.
**The Warmonger: “Why do I make war? Because I can!”

The Wifebeater: “Why do I beat the shit out of my wife? Because I can!” **

The fashion victim: “Why do I wear more make-up and clothes than is necessary to survive? Because I can?
The Internet user: “Why do I consume precious resources an in so doing damage the environment? Because I can”
Stoid you really are staring to frighten me now if you can’t distinguish between committing crimes against children and animals.

**So we torture and maim and destroy animals and the habitats they require to live. Why? Because we can. But that hardly makes for good morality, now does it? **
It does according to my morality, but I don’t force that down you throat! If it is bad according to your morality perhaps you could explain why you are doing it yourself by using your computer and eating grains.

**As for importance, there are many possible answers, depending on the point of view. For those who profess belief in a Creator (and that means a significant majority of people) the answer is easy: God. **
My Judeo/Christian/Moslem God has no problem with hunting. My ancestor spirits have no problem with hunting. What ‘God’ are you talking about, Krisna? That hardly contitutes a significant majority.

**For the rest, there are many answers. The easiest is ourselves…do you want to rob your children and grandchildren of the beautiful earth that you have had the good fortune to know? Would you sentence them knowingly to a life of nothing but minimum standards of life on earth…a place where our needs are all met, but nothing is left of the natural world to speak of? **
How exactly does my shooting a feral pig do contribute to any of this? I can easily see how your continued use of the internet does.

Only if you view the animal as no more deserving of respect or compassion than a basketball or a puzzle.

stoid

Neither.

Scylla, I agree with you and your feeling about hunting. Good post. But, mountain lions and coyotes still exist and predate deer here out west. (Coyotes feed on newborn fawns) I know that the whitetail in areas without natural predators will INDEED overpopulate without hunters.

I love hunting, I have never killed an animal though, because I am a mediocre hunter…But I have always enjoyed being a predator like the mountain lion. As it stands right now, the mountain lion is doing a better job in that role than I am. :slight_smile:

Stoid, Shayna, and Yosemitebabe just don’t appreciate the fact that hunters are one of the biggest groups of animal conservationsists in the world…After all, there’s nothing a hunter would enjoy more than having an abundancy of awesome wildlife.

Ah, yes, the old “hunters are conservationists!” boogie. It’s got a decent beat and you can dance to it, but I only give it a 5.

Hunters don’t want all wildlife. They only want the sort of wildlife that they like to kill. And why exactly is it that there are no natural predators left, hmm? It’s obviously not because they starved to death if the damn place is in danger of becoming overpopulated, now is it? No, they eat a few sheep and must therefore die. Also, a wild cat makes a nice trophy, doesn’t it? Big bad hunter slays deadly wild animal!
bah.
stoid

Stoid:

I understand, but I think you are being willfully ignorant by condemning something you know little about.

I think suffering stinks as well.

My hunting creates no new net suffering. Quite the contrary actually. The “natural” death faced by an animal in the wild through predations illness or starvation is almost surely more painful than a bullet or well-placed arrow.

If the meat I use came from an animal I killed myself or one killed at a slaughterhouse does not change the level of suffering.

When I kill an animal I intend to eat myself, I respect the life that gave me the meal a lot more than if I picked up a t-bone at the supermarket. By doing it myself I am accepting the responsibility for what I eat, and that my existence is dependent upon the suffering and death of other creatures. This is a fact that not all nonhunters can appreciate, but that every hunter must.

Hunting has made me appreciate other life more than if I had never hunted.

jeel, where on earth did I say anything even remotely like that?

I freely admit that my feelings on this issue are at odds. I, personally, could never kill an animal unless I absolutely had to in order to survive or it was the humane thing to do because it was suffering. I have a very hard time understanding those who enjoy killing animals.

However, I acknowledge that the animals I eat do get killed and someone has to do it. Animals die for my benefit in a myriad of other ways, as well, as has been pointed out in this thread. Intellectually, I accept that that’s the way of the world.

I did not mean to insult all hunters, and I’m afraid my comments may have come across that way.

I’m simply conflicted between finding the killing of animals to be cruel on the one hand, but necessary (for human and ultimately animal survival) on the other.

Do you have a meaningful rebuttal to this?

The actual answer isn’t hunting so much as the spread of civilization. We compete for the same resources, and land as these predators and our interests conflict. Usually the animal loses.

Oddly, hereabouts we are faced with a new predator. Well-meaning but stupid people buy dogs and have problems with them. Rather than take them to the pound they set them loose in the nearby game lands rather than to a pound. Doubtless, they have some dreamy illusion of returning them to the wild, like Born Free or something.

The reality is they get sick and die, hit by a car, or turn feral and travel in packs. My wife has been threatened by a pack of these animals, as have I. One of our dogs got chewed up. When they chased the horses one broke through a fence and required quite a few stitches.

When I see a dog without a collar around here I shoot it. But, there is no pleasure in it. It’s a necessity that I do so so that I don’t suffer for the mistakes of well-intentioned but ignorant people who think they know best.

Scylla, I think you are willfully ignoring my points.

Why do you hunt? You * like * it, don’t you? You * enjoy killing things* . no one is * forcing * you to do it, are they?

There may indeed be all kinds of peripheral bonuses that go along with hunting, I am not saying there aren’t. I’m also not saying that there are not good reasons for certain animals to be killed.

It is one thing to do what MUST be done because somebody has to do it. It is another to CHOOSE to do it because you LIKE IT.

Sombody has to deal with the garbage. Someone has to clean the cesspopols, someone has to empty the porta potties, someone has to do the autopsies and clean out the badpans and do all kinds of disgusting things in this life, and I’m eternally grateful that there are people who will do it. But if I ever knew any of these people, and they told me that they did any of these specific things because they found them FUN, I’d think they were wacked, ok? I put killing animals right up there next to 'em.

Damn, man… I know you ain’t that slow! I think the act of killing animals, no matter what the circumstance, without a single exception, should never, ever be pleasurable. It should never be an act that one enjoys to participate in. It should never be an act that is sought out for the “pleasure” it brings. I think that’s fucking sick, ok? Vets have to kill animals that are old and sick, but if I found out that it was my vets’s favorite thing to do, I’d find another fucking vet, ok? Is that really so incredibly difficult to understand?

jesus

stoid

This is getting weird. :slight_smile:

Meat-eating in general, and beef-eating in particular, has far greater ecological consequences than, say, eating pasta and beans (though the effects of the latter are non-trivial). (Recall, G, that feeding animals requires habitat to be cleared as well.) Source: Consumer’s Guide to Effective Environmental Choices, by the Union of Concerned Scientists. BTW, UCS is not a vegetarian advocacy group.
Table A.5:
Activity…Global Warming…Water …Habitat
…Pollution…Alteration
Fruit, Veges…64…228…945

Meat…134…1258…2147

Beef…166…1431…3119

Compare:
Plastic Bags…108…303…119

The above shows the environmental impact per dollar of expenditures. Since a vegetarian diet is cheaper, the above table underestimates the environmental benefits of avoiding meat.

Gaspode: Cites please. I do not understand why eating plants only is more wasteful to animal life than eating animals and plants. When you eat an animal, that animal has to be fed plants, A LOT of plants, to produce a small amount of food (meat) for you to eat. So when you eat animals, you eat the animal, and (in a sense) all the plants it was fed throughout its lifetime.

Please provide a reputable cite that proves that vegetarians are responsible for more animal death than meat-eaters. Bear in mind, unless a meat-eater eats NO veggies, they are also responsible for the death of the bugs and other critters that die during plant farming. So I don’t see your logic here.

But this thread is not about vegetarianism. And in case the rest of you were not paying attention, I was not actually criticising hunting per-se. As a bleeding-heart vegetarian, I cannot say that I am crazy about hunting. But I do not see it as this absolute evil that Stoidela does. And I don’t see why non-hunting meat-eaters get so high-and-mighty about hunting. As far as I (as a vegetarian) am concerned, you are all eating dead animals. What does it matter how it got to your plate? And as I mentioned before, I think that the case can be made that hunting can sometimes be actually more humane than factory farming. At least the creature had a decent life before they were killed. This often isn’t the case with commercially bred animals that are used for meat.

Stoid wrote:

I guess I must care more than you, I guess I am more moral and ethical than you. Because I have taken a step apparently you won’t take. I DON’T eat meat. And you do. You could take that extra step (that so fits into your whole bleeding-heart ideology) and diminish your responsibility for animal suffering and death. But you won’t, for whatever reason. If I have chosen to do it, why can’t you? Why do you eat meat? “Because you can?” “Because it tastes good?” Why? What is your “excuse” for causing the death of innocent animals? You don’t have to cause their deaths. But you choose to, you willfully choose to.

Bear in mind, I am being partly tongue-in-cheek about this, because it is not my usual habit to nag meat-eaters to stop eating meat. (I figure it is none of my business, and it is VERY irritating, and rude to do so, as a general rule.) But I figure if anyone needed to be “tweaked”, it’s Stoid! :smiley:

Unless we’re unabomber back-to-nature people, we shouldn’t hunt. Its uncivilized. It should be taught in school, but not practiced, much like the rest of our history. We’re above that now.
[/sarcasm]
They are animals. They are cute, and they taste good. Why should anyone ever be ashamed of killing an animal for food? I would almost think it is more civilized to kill your own food. Large populations, space considerations, and efficiency remove the ability for everyone to hunt. It even removes the necessity. But that doesn’t change anything.

Vegetarian extremists might be as likely to point out that people never needed to hunt at all, and they would be right.

There is nothing evil about killing an animal. There wasn’t then and there isn’t now.

~~arl, who has never hunted but always wanted to

Let me see if I have this right: “Killing is bad. Paying someone to do the killing for you is good.” Am I close?

By the same token, is masturbation wrong, but paying a prostitute OK? That’s something one does because it “feels good” too…