St Croix River Road Ramblings

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Thursday, April 5, 2012

Why is it ethical to eat meat?

The New York Times magazine is sponsoring an essay contest for readers to answer the question "Why is it ethical to eat meat?" "Why is it ethical to eat meat?"

 The essay must be 500 word or less and sent in by April 8th. No relative of mine has gotten published in the NY Times since in 1907 when great Uncle Edwin Paulson, stationed as a teacher for missionaries in China, wrote a long article about the Dalai Lama visiting China.

 My Essay:

 Dear Ethicist, As a moderate, I often make ethical decisions based on the middle ground between extremes. I believe that there is truth in each extreme, but as a practical matter, the middle ground seems to have more truth for more people.

 The severely conservative meat eating position is surely cannibalism. Eating your fellow man seems to have been frowned on by most cultures. Two exceptions arise: religious ritual manwiches; and gnawing starvation pains. In extremis et religiƍ we dine a la Donner, but not as a habit.

 Veganites eschew any and all animal products for ethical, environmental and health reasons. PEThics, as expounded by PETA, sententiously steers this herd. Asceticism of this degree is an effort too much for most.

A pragmatist will thus chose midway between eating each other and eating nothing that breathes. Not eating each other, for me extends to animals with my DNA inserted for xenotransplants. I think it swinish to eat the bacon while the boar’s heart is beating within. Meat, grilled rarely, is a delicious part of my own diet.

Omniscience, and Omnipotence is for God. Omnivorence is for man.