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View Full Version : Slaughterhouse vs. strawberry harvest: Can plants feel pain?



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Geoff
Jan 29th, 2005, 02:17 AM
I feel that there's a continuum, going from the simplest vegetable form right through to the most advanced animal (Me!). There's very little difference between the most complex plant and single celled animals such as amoebae.
Somewhere along that line there's a point beyond which we decide not to kill, but it's different for all of us. I will kill a tick to remove it from me or one of my animals but I don't kill leeches as they can easily be removed. It comes down to how much trouble we're prepared to go to in the name of compassion.
I had a massive tree fall across my driveway yesterday and, as it was riddled with termites, it would have been extremely difficult to cut it up without harming any of them so I compromised by killing as few as possible.

kriz
Jan 29th, 2005, 06:07 AM
It gets kind of tiring when people approach you with skeptism like you just told them you belive in UFOS or something....I think the vegan concept is very easy to grasp whatever one agree or not. :rolleyes:

tails4wagging
Jan 29th, 2005, 06:44 AM
I had a meat eating friend who said as he gave me a vegan meal 'those vegitables died for you' he was being sarcastic. Why do folks feel the need to insult a vegan!!!

phillip888
Jan 30th, 2005, 10:56 PM
" will kill a tick to remove it from me or one of my animal"

Um, I have removed quite a few ticks without killing them. You use large tweezers and twist them out gently.

The statement that all living things are the same but different is contradictory. A blood cell in my finger is not equal to my body, especially since my blood-cell is part of my body. At the same time I know that mysticism is the opposite of science (and any form of rational thought), and is fine with contradicting itself at every turn. Of course you can't argue a subject of 'plant feelings' with someone who believes things for no reason, as their beliefs can be contradictory or change rapidly to suit their emotional state or taste preference. People that suffer the psychotic condition of faith might respond to an argument of empathy (again only if they have it), and of course as someone stated before, things like fruit (the majority of edible plants are fruiting plants) are created by the plant for consumption. Can a person incapable of rational thought claim that a cow or person or chicken or whatever they're enamored with killing refute such an argument? Yah, but at least it stands a chance with people incapable of reason over one of reason.

Hasha
Jan 31st, 2005, 01:59 AM
There's very little difference between the most complex plant and single celled animals such as amoebae.

I don't know about that one, Geoff. I would certainly sacrifice an insect (lots of them even!) to save a tree.

dreama
Jul 6th, 2005, 09:09 PM
I keep an open mind on wether plants have feelings or not. I think they do. However. There is no such thing as a factory farmed plant. If you crammed plants in a dark smelly room they would just die. Unlike farm animals who will suffer instead.

I do however have a lot of respect for fruitarians. I just couldn't be one myself as I find veganism hard enough.

ccgyrl
Jul 6th, 2005, 09:25 PM
If someone informs me about slave labor in China, you wouldn't find me trying to attack it as an argument and start undermining the "messenger". I would thank this person for caring enough to educate me on the issue.

if there were more people like you the world would be a better place!

zena
Jul 7th, 2005, 12:31 AM
what ive done in the past about the plant feeling remark is gasp and then swear off food forever! i will only eat organicly non-chemicaly modifide home grown dirt! forever!!! and i will be naked! i want no part in killing those cute little inocent cotons!!

i can almost understand patronizing someone for having differnt views but arguing that plants suffer is a little *******ish even for me.

adam antichrist
Jul 7th, 2005, 10:27 AM
I had a meat eating friend who said as he gave me a vegan meal 'those vegitables died for you' he was being sarcastic. Why do folks feel the need to insult a vegan!!!

because they're better than we are

Mystic
Jul 7th, 2005, 11:04 AM
what ive done in the past about the plant feeling remark is gasp and then swear off food forever! i will only eat organicly non-chemicaly modifide home grown dirt! forever!!! and i will be naked! i want no part in killing those cute little inocent cotons!! .

But dirt is the home of the earthworm - how selfish are you?! :D

kimmyk
Jul 17th, 2005, 05:40 PM
bottom line the single-most rediculous argument against vegetarianism/veganism known to man .

veganrunner9
Jul 20th, 2005, 06:59 PM
I wanted to know as a concerened vegan if it is possible for plants to feel pain.

Stu
Jul 20th, 2005, 07:55 PM
They don't have a brain, so they can't register pain.

Hey, I'm a poet who didn't know it.

VeganJohn
Jul 20th, 2005, 09:12 PM
No, as they have no brain or central nervous system.

Zanahorias!
Jul 21st, 2005, 01:21 AM
I must actually differ, somewhat. Being that I feel plants have souls, they most certainly can feel pain on a certain level spiritually.

Therefore, there is also a small amount of Karma that may be attributed to the consumption of plants. This, though, is all tied to how the crop, or whatever, is harvested, and, if you had your own garden, could certainly be diminished, if not eliminated. However, that I suppose is a topic for another discussion...

To answer your question: plants cannnot feel pain physically on the same level that we can, but there is that spiritual element, if you please to acknowelge it.

tipsy
Jul 21st, 2005, 04:15 AM
plants dont have neurons, dont have pain receptors, or brains therefore, they dont feel pain....like you (**pinch**) or i.

but they are beautiful, and do grow better with sunshine and water, just like you and i.

and while i found some research supporting plants liking music, i also found some denying it.

http://forums.gardenweb.com/forums/load/teach/msg0802085621372.html

http://www.4to40.com/story/print.asp?article=story_revathismusicalplants

heheheeee :D

tipsy
Jul 21st, 2005, 04:25 AM
i think ive gotten this one thrown at me once ('but plants have feelings too!!')

but it was directly after a cousin of mine (21 year old female, "vegitarian" cousin) questioned me about my veganism, and said
"but what about your shirt".... at wich point i looked at my own shirt and said....
"what! its cotton".... and she replied...get this...
"what about the sheep??!!?!"

this is when i explained to her that cotton is a plant and sheep are sheared for wool.

that was about when i got "but what about the plant's feelings!"

so i dont think ill ever be able to take that question seriously.

:D :D :D

Plunder Bunnie
Jul 23rd, 2005, 12:20 AM
I always just say the same thing, because i know how i feel. To me, being vegan is about causing as little suffering as possible. Its not about never doing the wrong thing, or makign mistakes, its about being a moral person who does that little bit extra to prevent or lessen the suffering around themselves. It could be also be sponsering a child, feeding strays, or even volunterring your time at a shelter of any kind. When someone says that, first of they're trying to be right so they dont ahve to FEEL wrong. People are so definsive about these issues because they dont want to feel guilt or responsibility.
i tend to just tell them im doing all i can right now to prevent the suffering of other living creatures. And then quickly add, What are you doing?

Michael Benis
Jul 25th, 2005, 07:30 PM
Plants certainly do have a different central nervous system, and despite having mechanisms such as thorns etc, they can't run away. The important point is, many more plants are killed in order to maintain animals - more than 80 percent of all grains, for example, is fed to animals. Moreover, if your friend could choose whether to eat a carrot or a cat - which would she choose?


That's normally how I reply. You need to kill around ten times as many plants to get their nutrition through an animal, plus of course you need to kill the animal too. It's very simple maths: even a bigot can appreciate it :-)

Cheers

Michael

Michael Benis
Jul 25th, 2005, 07:32 PM
I had a meat eating friend who said as he gave me a vegan meal 'those vegitables died for you' he was being sarcastic. Why do folks feel the need to insult a vegan!!!

Because somewhere in there, they have feelings too :-)

Cheers

Michael

Glen
Jul 28th, 2005, 10:37 AM
Stupid Omni: "Plants have feelings too you know"
Me: "No, they don't."

End of. :-)

sugarmouse
Aug 20th, 2005, 06:58 PM
cudnt have put it better glen:

I eat everything that nature voluntarily gives: fruits, vegetables, and the products of plants. But I ask you to spare me what animals are forced to surrender: meat, milk, and cheese. ~Author Unknown

toma_Paella!!!
Sep 8th, 2005, 01:02 AM
I have read some of you guys talking about the central nervous system of plants...
do you actually know what a central nervous system is? a brain. And without it, no being can feel pain, or pleasure, NOTHING.

If plants have mechanisms to protect themselves it's just something automatic, it doesn't have anything to do with them being able to experience pain or having an actual desire for life.

Plants, as they lack all of the above, are physically unable to feel pain, and so a vegan lifestyle does not bring any more suffering to this world...

And of course, if somebody ever asks you about plant suffering (the same person who doesn't give a f**k about killing lambs, for example), that person's obviously laughing at you... (unless it's a fruitarian indeed, hehe,which should be also respected)

On the Coast
Oct 10th, 2005, 05:32 AM
So, I'm a Botanist - :), and in my 3rd year at Uni, we did all these crazy experiments testing the 'Sentience, or Reaction Quotient in Vascular Plants'.
One experiment included things like two plant specimens, from the same Parent Stock, with all the same environmental conditions, except, one was talked to soothingly, told how beautiful it was, music played for it. The other was yelled at, called names, etc.
Lo and behold, the verbally abused plant died within 3 weeks of the start of conditioning, in every case, whereas the coddled plant thrived with vigorous growth.

In another experiment, we started by isolating one plant from a community of similar stock, (same Parent Stock), all raised in the same environment, with the same nutritional input. The isolated plant was then gradually exposed to higher levels of heat, with a timed duration between exposure, until finally resulting in drying, wilting, and irreparable burn. Next, a second plant was seperated, and similarly exposed, while 'reaction' was monitored in the remaining members of the community. In all studies except one, the remaining plants in the community, exhibited 'defensive' traits and characteristics, such as weeping, folding of leaf surfaces, and curling of the crown, even though none of them were actually exposed to a heat increase.
The one test where these traits were not marked, was when the isolated plants were removed to an area with a solid border seperating them from the rest of the community. The three times the community did go into 'defense', the isolated plants were removed to distances of 60', 120', and 180'.

We did another test involving harvesting field crops. In each case, regardless of plant type, (i.e. - root / leaf / stock fruit) the distance of 'defense traits', grew exponentially, with the distance of harvested plants. It averaged 30' of 'defense' to every 5+' of harvest.

Anyhoo - we did a number of other studies, involving passive interaction, element exposure, and environment stimuli. In each case, there was definite evidence of intake and communication on the part of plant communities. One reason I view eating animals the same as I view eating plants as I view eating humans, (on a philosophical and moral level). It is all just life cycle (though personally, I feel eating flesh and animal products is super nasty http://www.vegpeople.com/gossamer/sick.gif). I feel, with our brain capacity, (and considering the amount we use), it is possible for us to develop alternatives to suffering. But in the mean time, we have to survive, and we are all products of our environment. Though I daydream about the time when our children's children's children, are all breatharian
(and probably of an indestinguishable race and sex http://www.vegpeople.com/gossamer/wink.gif).......

adam antichrist
Oct 10th, 2005, 05:44 AM
That's very interesting. I am of the opinion that energy can be detected (even by us Humans) and fluctuations in energy are perceptible. However there is no machine or implement yet invented which may measure this.

But some of your observations fit into this idea, largely the plants dying after being abused... the negative energy they were exposed to is likely to be a factor.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not a bad hippy or anything; I just really believe there is more to parapsychology than seances and tarot cards and perhaps one day we'll have a clearer understanding of such phenomena.