The ethical choice is to abstain from eating humans

Via Gary Smith
on Oct 13, 2011
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Humans are sentient beings. Raising and killing humans for meat and dairy always causes pain. Humans do not have a biological need to eat human meat and their secretions. So, if you choose to eat human meat and secretions, you are choosing to cause pain and to participate in exploitation and murder. Participating in pain and murder is always unethical. The ethical choice is to abstain from eating humans and their secretions.


About Gary Smith

Gary Smith is co-founder of Evolotus, a PR agency working for a better world. Evolotus specializes in nonprofits, documentary films, animal advocacy campaigns, health/wellness, natural foods and socially beneficial companies. Gary blogs at The Thinking Vegan and writes for elephant journal, Jewish Journal, Mother Nature Network and other publications. Gary and his wife are ethical vegans and live in Sherman Oaks, CA with their cat Chloe and two beagles rescued from an animal testing laboratory, Frederick and Douglass.


15 Responses to “The ethical choice is to abstain from eating humans”

  1. Jo Tyler says:

    Keep trying, Gary, but I'm inclined to think more intelligent and compassionate people could be found at a Rodeo/BBQ than in the forums of the supposedly "spiritual and enlightened" Elephant Journal.

  2. Trin says:

    You'd be wrong. Compassion and intelligence don't go hand in hand with abuse, killing, and apathy. It never will.

  3. Trin says:

    Oh, I'm seeing your point now. Apologies, I misread the first time. I'm sad to say I agree with you.

  4. Suri kate says:

    And the point is???????

  5. Ashley says:

    Please tell me you are being sarcastic or joking.

  6. Padma Kadag says:

    Gary…I understand your is noble..on the surface…I wonder if you think that being vegan is the final solution to suffering? I sincerely would like a response…your view. If you are a vegan…is there anything left for you to do in regard to morality or progressing, in some way, towards an enlightenment? I am curious

  7. Speaking as a human that gave my "dairy products" to my human children for a total of nearly 4 years, there was (usually) nothing painful or exploitative about the experience! And ironically:

    Gary – it is great that there are people who are so impassioned on the subject of veganism, it keeps those of us who are more in the middle about it on our toes. I mean that sincerely. All the best.

  8. Gary Smith says:

    Padma – Vegan is the first step, not the last. Though veganism is specific in its focus on nonhuman animals, veganism does touch on human suffering. We can start with the role that animal based foods play in land use, water use and grain use. Over 70% of all corn, wheat and soy are given to farmed animals to eat instead of humans. Close to one billion people are starving or food impoverished globally. The two most dangerous industries for workers are factory farms and slaughterhouses. Undocumented workers are abused by these industries as well. The pollution of water and air, the largest amounts of greenhouse gasses all come from animal food production. Global climate change is and will be causing immense suffering to both human and nonhuman animals.

    As to morality or enlightenment, veganism is not the end. I do not believe that someone can claim to live a moral life or be enlightened by participating in exploitation and murder, particularly when one does not need to eat or use animals.

  9. Gary Smith says:

    Kate – You'd do well as a vegan. You should give it a try.

  10. I have! I did for maybe 3 years? For all the wrong reasons… I'm probably about 6 mths. away from doing it completely for the right ones. I only eat dairy 1 – 2x a week as it is right now. Shouldn't be too hard to let it go completely.

  11. Gary Smith says:

    Kate – That's wonderful. I really want to recommend you check out "Eat to Live" or "Vegan for Life." Both do a really good job of helping people to move to a healthy, nutritionally balanced diet (based on science). Let me know if you would like any support.

  12. Thanks Gary! I actually have "Eat to Live" and Fuhrman's other book "Disease Proof your Kids." Those two & his website are where I get many of my dinner ideas. See…vegetarians aren't all evil!

  13. I don't know if I'm "enlightened" or not, Jo, nor do I know if I am truly spritual, but I am trying. However, categorically insulting all of us who disagree or who are peacefully coming up with counterpoints to what Mr. Smith kind of puts you into that rodeo/ bbq category in how you treat some of your fellow humans. For the record, I have been respectfully discussing this topic, and have taken issue with the way the information is presented, and not the information itself. I am seeing, from Mr. Smith's comments, that he feels his point is more important than how he gets it across. While I can see the truth in that, I can also see how speaking crudely of non-vegans would also upset those who do not lead the lifestyle. I am not upset, personally, but somewhat baffled. Getting people to convert to a completely different lifestyle requires an element of compassion for them and all of their inequities.

  14. Having said all of that, I actually appreciate what Mr. Smith has done with this article, replacing the word "Animals" with "humans". His point definitely comes across, but the inital nastiness of the original article and responses will probably have a lasting effect.

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