Nature versus Nurture: Humans Should Morally Become Vegetarians To many, it is very acceptable and seemingly natural that humans include meat in their common diet. This practice can be found historically and globally across many countries and cultures. It is undeniable that humans are omnivores and have been for the past many millenniums. However, is consuming meat actually natural? What is acceptable may not be natural and may have become acceptable due to our environment and nurture, and it is important to distinguish between the two, as popular acceptance does not equal to moral rightness. In Animal Liberation, Peter Singer argues that, as animals have the ability to feel pain and pleasure, they have sentience and hence, are subject to the equal moral worth as human beings. Therefore he claims that it is only moral that most of us ought to opt for a vegetarian lifestyle. I agree with Singer on this claim based on the Natural Law Theory and with scientific proof that animals indeed have a sentience and also based on our natural physiological design. Singer argues that equality should not be limited only to humans and points out that beings with a sentience should be entitled to equal consideration of their interests (Singer, 1990), with sentience being the ability to perceive through the senses. This is perfectly reasonable as there is ethological evidence that animals do have sentience on several cases, such as sheep being able to recognize faces, prairie dogs speaking their own language. Furthermore, elephants bury their dead, gibbons take care of their elderly, and male bats babysit young bats that are not their offspring while their mothers are out hunting (Basile, 2005). These animals need not do these actions, as these actions are not necessary for their own survival, nor do their own progeny’s survival depend on them. However, these altruistic deeds show that animals do not merely act on instinct. Moreover, emotions are...
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