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Thread: "Humans are Omnivores" statement - ugh!

  1. #1
    vtveg
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    Default "Humans are Omnivores" statement - ugh!

    So I don't know how many of you have seen "Food Inc." but after seeing the documentary I went vegan within a week (that was last August). I am a fan of "Food Inc." on Facebook and often follow threads people leave in regards to how (if) they've changed their eating habits since seeing the film. The most common response is that people stop buying mass produced/factory farmed meat and start buying grass fed/free range local meat. Whenever I chime in and bring up the ethicals of raising and killing animals for human consumption the response is always the same; "Humans are Omnivores." Every response completely avoids my point on ethics; that breeding, raising, and killing animals for human consumption is a cruel and selfish act. That manipulating an animals life should not be in the hands of humans. People feel they have justified their behavior by stating that our ancestors have done this, people have eaten this way for thousands of years, so that makes it okay.

    It's interesting and frustrating at the same time that even when you argue the ethics side of things, people can still justify their behavior (in their own minds that is).

    Has anyone else had this problem when trying to get people to consider the aspects of cruelty/manipulation/etc. when consuming meat, dairy, egg no matter what the circumstance of raising those animals was?

    Thank you.

    VTVEG

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    Default Re: "Humans are Omnivores" statement - ugh!

    Yes, humans are omnivores, but that means we CAN eat a lot of things, not that we SHOULD or DO eat everything that we can.

    For example, we certainly CAN eat human flesh -- and it's even been acceptable in some cultures. That doesn't mean that we should, morally. And heck, many committed carnivores are against eating endangered species or what they see as "pet" animals.

    Nor does the fact that we can eat ice cream mean that we should base our diets around it. I think most people realize that wouldn't be healthy.

    All of our food choices have negative consequences of some sort, but we must each decide which ones are acceptable to us. But, for me, the answer is clear. A vegan diet -- at least the way I eat while on one -- is much healthier for me, better for the planet, more socially responsible, more ethical in general but especially in regards to animal welfare, and even cheaper.

    So, for me, the question to them would be, "Why SHOULD I eat meat (or dairy or eggs)?" Except in a true survival situation, I don't see any good reason why I should. I don't even like the taste -- which is not to say there aren't some tasty non-vegan meals, but for me the flavor comes from the vegan ingredients so that's not really a reason at all, and certainly not a good enough reason, imho, even if I loved the taste of meat because of the many negative consequences of meat eating.

  3. #3
    leedsveg
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    Default Re: "Humans are Omnivores" statement - ugh!

    Hi folks

    Good points made. I do believe we had a recent thread on a similar theme.

    leedsveg

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    Divided by 0 MoonDance's Avatar
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    Default Re: "Humans are Omnivores" statement - ugh!

    You know what also is annoying, particularly around Australia Day; Sam Kekovich telling us that not eating lamb is un-Australian. -_-
    I hate it when I'm studying and a velociraptor throws bananas on me.

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    Tishy's Avatar
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    Default Re: "Humans are Omnivores" statement - ugh!

    I agree with you 110% Moondance! I was going to do a bit of direct action this Australia Day and go over to the butchers near me that had that sign up and plaster it in facts and how to be un-cruel instead of un-australian. Unfortunately, I fell asleep.

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    Default Re: "Humans are Omnivores" statement - ugh!

    Quote PlantsPlease View Post
    Yes, humans are omnivores, but that means we CAN eat a lot of things, not that we SHOULD or DO eat everything that we can.
    That pretty much sums it up, I think.

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    Divided by 0 MoonDance's Avatar
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    Default Re: "Humans are Omnivores" statement - ugh!

    Quote Tishy View Post
    I agree with you 110% Moondance! I was going to do a bit of direct action this Australia Day and go over to the butchers near me that had that sign up and plaster it in facts and how to be un-cruel instead of un-australian. Unfortunately, I fell asleep.
    LOL awww damn that would've been awsome!!! Maybe next Australia Day I might do something like that ... >.> *grins evilly*
    I hate it when I'm studying and a velociraptor throws bananas on me.

  8. #8
    leedsveg
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    Default Re: "Humans are Omnivores" statement - ugh!

    Seems strange with such a thread title that we have not had any long complicated arguments posted.

    Thanks to posters for keeping things straightforward enough for me understand.

    leedsveg

  9. #9
    Manzana Manzana's Avatar
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    Default Re: "Humans are Omnivores" statement - ugh!

    Quote vtveg View Post
    It's interesting and frustrating at the same time that even when you argue the ethics side of things, people can still justify their behavior (in their own minds that is).

    Has anyone else had this problem when trying to get people to consider the aspects of cruelty/manipulation/etc. when consuming meat, dairy, egg no matter what the circumstance of raising those animals was?

    Thank you.

    VTVEG
    Yup... Just yesterday I was having a very civilised conversation about a pro organic meat person... I explained to him that the life of the animals might well be MUCH better but the death is just as horrible and they end up in the same death queue as all the other "non organic" animals, smelling the same blood and hearing the same screams...

    He went on to ask if I thought we should NEVER eat meat... to which I said there are some ocassions where perhaps it could be acceptable such as if you happen to live in the north pole and have no access to other food or if your plane crashes in a remote forest and you have nothing to eat and dont know which plants are edible, if you are a subsistance farmer who had a terrible year and have nothing to eat in winter and a family to feed etc (you get the picture, when you REALLY need it)... I said to him that to me "it tastes good" was not a very good justification to take a life...

    to which he replied "I disagree with you... I think it is ok to kill an animal for taste, I just dont feel happy that they have a horrible death"...

    Now... I was confused at this and would have replied with a hundred things such as "your mum might taste good too but I would not kill her humanely on the basis of that" but I did not want to completely antagonise this person which had said something very silly and also ilogical from where I stand (in fact i hope at some point he thinks back on it and realises how daft that statement is without me making him feel bad about it)... so I agreed to disagree...

    In all honesty... the more I have discussed veganism with people that eat meat, the more I think that meat is an addictive substance (no, I have no evidence of this, it is just a personal hypothesis forming in my head).... it feels a bit like trying to talk to a heroin addict about quitting heroin or to a smoker about quitting smoking... you can have brilliant arguments that are logical and everyone is a winner... nevertheless, they will come back with something that summarises an easy point "I want to continue doing it, I dont feel strong enough to contemplate the absence of this substance from my life"....

    Disclaimer: I am not trying to be patronising to people that eat meat here... I am just trying to explain what to me is an incomprehensible fact of life!

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    Default Re: "Humans are Omnivores" statement - ugh!

    ^ I don't think meat is addictive in the same way cheese is; it is simply cheap, abundant, easy and quick to cook, and people like the taste of it, therefore prefer not to deprive themselves of it.

    I also think if there was more contact in our society between farm animals and people, meat consumption would drop somewhat. After all, people are horrified at the thought of eating cats and dogs, but not a cow.

    OT: The anti-vivisection league (LAV) here in Italy has a brilliant go-vegetarian campaign running at the moment. There is a picture of a cow with a flower in its mouth, and the accompanying slogan is "Vegetarians Live Longer - if you don't eat them first."

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    Default Re: "Humans are Omnivores" statement - ugh!

    I've had this problem a million times. Even worse is when a meat-eater's argument is, "that's the food chain", as if that can be used as an excuse to eat meat. The food chain is an observation, not a reason. I agree with Manzana. Meat-eaters treat meat like it's a drug. It's almost impossible to make them think logically about this subject.

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    Default Re: "Humans are Omnivores" statement - ugh!

    Sorry to insist, but I don't think it's a drug in the sense that it's addictive; it just becomes a habit, and society and corporations alike brainwash us into thinking it's the only way to eat. And stopping eating meat would involve CHANGE. People often don't like change. Although I do agree when you say

    Quote BJJNick View Post
    It's almost impossible to make them think logically about this subject.
    Logic doesn't get a look-in when pleasuring someone's palate is at stake.

  13. #13

    Default Re: "Humans are Omnivores" statement - ugh!

    The point I tend to make is that, whilst I think in some cases the hunting, killing, preparing & eating of an animal by humans could be considered 'natural' or necessary, factory farming on a mass scale and all the horrible cruelty that goes with it certainly couldn't be considered 'natural' in any way.

    A lot of us live in a society that's made it possible for meat to be widely available and disposable...but simultaneously I have a huge selection of vegan options and since it's no hardship for me to go without the meat/dairy, I do.

    Omnivores 'by nature' we may be, but I'd like to see any one of the people chowing down on burgers in McDonalds do a bit of hardcore hunter-gathering.....
    "I am not mystical: it isnít as if I thought it had a spirit. It is simply in its element. That gives it a kingliness, a right." [Sylvia Plath]

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    Default Re: "Humans are Omnivores" statement - ugh!

    Quote fiamma View Post

    I also think if there was more contact in our society between farm animals and people, meat consumption would drop somewhat. After all, people are horrified at the thought of eating cats and dogs, but not a cow.
    I totally agree with this. It always puzzles me how the Countryside Alliance and their ilk maintain that us city dwellers "don't understand" how it is in the country...well I think that being removed from the process of farming actually makes it far easier for people not to think about where their food really comes from. I am certain that if I had grown up on a farm I would have been vegan years earlier - there is no way I could have watched animals being raised, sold and slaughtered without realising how wrong it is.
    Last edited by Holly78; Feb 16th, 2010 at 09:04 AM. Reason: Messed up the quote!
    "Only after the last tree has been cut down,the last fish caught [and] the last river poisoned;only then will you realise that money cannot be eaten"

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    Default Re: "Humans are Omnivores" statement - ugh!

    Quote fooldramaqueen View Post
    Omnivores 'by nature' we may be, but I'd like to see any one of the people chowing down on burgers in McDonalds do a bit of hardcore hunter-gathering.....
    Lol - brilliant!!! Like Sylvester Stallone in Rocky, trying to catch that chicken... Or all these people running round the countryside going "Dude, where's the mayo?"

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    Default Re: "Humans are Omnivores" statement - ugh!

    Quote fiamma View Post
    Sorry to insist, but I don't think it's a drug in the sense that it's addictive; it just becomes a habit, and society and corporations alike brainwash us into thinking it's the only way to eat. And stopping eating meat would involve CHANGE. People often don't like change. Although I do agree when you say



    Logic doesn't get a look-in when pleasuring someone's palate is at stake.
    What I mean to say is that they make it SEEM like a drug.

  17. #17
    leedsveg
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    Default Re: "Humans are Omnivores" statement - ugh!

    Quote fiamma View Post
    Logic doesn't get a look-in when pleasuring someone's palate is at stake.
    A long time since my palate was pleasured.

    lv

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    Eat Y'self Fitter's Avatar
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    Default Re: "Humans are Omnivores" statement - ugh!

    This is a conversation that'll never end between ominvores and vegans. Taste weighted by ethics and morality. If they can't get past that standpoint or tell you that not all meat is factory farmed. Tell them that 99% percent of meat in the united states is factory farmed. It would be harder to get a hold of meat that wasn't then to get a vegan meal.

    I dunno man you can just point out that their meat undoubtley had shit on it at some point. No one likes shit-talk while their eating.

    This conversation wears me thin, I avoid arguments about ethics, but am happy with providing people with the facts of the disgusting manner of how there food was raised, killed and processed.

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    baffled harpy's Avatar
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    Default Re: "Humans are Omnivores" statement - ugh!

    Naughty step, lv!

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    leedsveg
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    Default Re: "Humans are Omnivores" statement - ugh!

    Quote harpy View Post
    Naughty step, lv!
    Whatever for? (Asks leedsveg acting all innocent)

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