Point: Eating meat a cruel practice; all creatures need protection

A professor in the philosophy department at Princeton University, coined the term “speciesism” which is analogous to racism and sexism.Professor Peter Singer says animals have traits which make them different from humans, inherited from genes and DNA, and yet are viewed as inferior.

Being more intelligent does not make one superior.

As Jeremy Bentham, an 18th century reformer wrote about animals, “The question is not, can they reason? Nor, can they talk? But, can they suffer?”

Chickens, for example, live in their own wastes in cramped quarters until they are killed. Bulls are often castrated without anesthetic. In general, a tremendous amount of suffering takes place in the slaughterhouse.

So the reason many humans don’t question their carnivorous diets is because of discrimination, which leads to notions that it “doesn’t matter” that animals suffer, or that they are killed.

Another argument meat-eaters give for eating flesh is that animals do not participate in our society, lawmaking and elections.

Social contracts are indeed made by “intelligent beings” but what would we do in the following scenario: suppose super-intelligent aliens from space came to Earth, having vastly better technology, and decided to harvest human bodies for food. There could be nothing people could do.

This proves the human social contract needs to be modified to include the rights of animals.

I say animal husbandry (farming animals) and eating them is wrong because we would not want someone to farm and eat us, hence the aliens example.

Humans are not as separate from animals as many believe. They also suffer, and have joys and pleasures. It’s this, not having an advanced mind, which makes animals like us and worthy of our kindness to them.

Eric Fisher Stone is a senior philosophy major from Fort Worth.