Eating Meat and The Treatment of Animals
Eating animals is part of the daily life of billions of people all over the world. Every day, thousands of animals are killed for the production of food for people. We have been brought up eating meat and never questioned it. It is culturally accepted even though modern livestock and poultry production (factory farming) is cruel and gives animals no other purpose for existence except for human consumption. There are particular religions which prohibit eating certain meats or eating meat at all. The religious points of view also cover the topic on the treatment of animals. Cultural practices on eating animals around the world differ from each other and what some may consider the norm may be shocking to us North-Americans. Then there is the question about morality - is it possible to eat meat and yet still respect animal rights? There are many different angles to look at this topic. For instance, coming from an Islamic background, I have respect for all living creatures and I am against animal cruelty but, when it comes to eating habits, like Wallace, I eat meat because I “believe animals are less morally important than human beings”. It does not mean that I do not respect animal rights. There is nothing morally wrong about eating animals. The moral issue stems from whether you, personally, have a problem with eating what was once a living animal. In my opinion, animals are not equal to human beings in terms of morality, critical thinking, decisions vs. instinct, or communication; although, some of them come very close. Most people in North America do not think about the meat they eat. When they go to the supermarket, questions such as where did the meat come from and under what circumstances did the animals live in, never cross their minds because eating meat is part of their daily intake of food. Most meats come from large scale live stock and poultry production facilities. These facilities often keep animals in crowded...
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