‘The Mother’ Who Did Not Empathise With A Father

[D]aughter sees deer in the wild, smiles and exclaims to her titular [M]other: Beautiful! shoots. D yells: No, no, no! (Scene changes to their cabin’s dining table with a bowl of meat.) M: Eat. D: I can’t. M: Yes, you can. D: Not eating Bambi’s Mom. M: That’s not venison. The deer has to hang for the meat to tenderise. Besides, that was a stag. So it would be Bambi’s Dad. D: What is this then? M: Rabbit. Thumper. D: Not eating a rabbit either. M: Listen to me. That rabbit had a better life than any cheeseburger you ever ate. D: He had a beautiful life until you shot him. M: I trapped him. D: (sarcastically) Much better. M: Let me tell you something, kid. There’s nothing you ever ate that didn’t come from violence. D: Tofu. M: Half of Paraguay was burned and deforested for soy plantations. D: Cheese. M: Those cows are impregnated just so they can be pulled on all day. D: Cashew cheese. M: I know a mercenary in the Ivory Coast. Said they fought a civil war over cashews…

did not win the debate due to these reasons[1] Yes, you can choose to not kill and/or eat an animal for food. There is no need to speak of the thought experiment of being stranded on an island with nothing else to eat, because we are connected to abundant plant-based foods now. [2] Be it venison or another meat, it was another real animal’s beloved and loving mother, father, son and/or daughter; not just the parent of a cartoon character. This is nothing arbitrary to joke about. [3] Just because a rabbit led a freer life than a cow does not mean it is okay to trap, kill and eat him or her. Likewise, just because you have a relatively good life now does not mean you should be subject to pain and death by someone else later. [4] Even if what we consume is difficult to not come from absolutely no violence, it can come from less harm. [5] Most soy plantations did not arise from utter destruction. For a balanced diet, there should not be consuming of only soy anyway. Consuming animals also leads to increase in demand for clearing more land, just for planting crops as food for fattening animals. Thus, eating plants directly uses the least land.

[6] The systematic imprisoning, torturing, exploiting, breeding and killing of animals for their meat and produce like dairy should not be supported. Not supporting this does not mean we should trap and shoot wild animals either, when there are plenty of healthier and cruelty-free vegan foods available. [7] Of course, cashew cheese that originates from human-caused conflicts should not be supported, while there are other forms of plant-based cheeses, all of which are optional for consumption, as there are so many more other fruits, vegetables, grains, legumes, nuts and seeds to eat. [8] Just because one can argue against the morality of eating a few vegan foods does not mean all other vegan foods are immoral, or that the non-vegan foods one eats is moral. We have to look at the big and complete picture, to realise that plant-based foods on the whole are indeed most ethical for most beings.

M did refrain from shooting a wild mother wolf when she saw she has pups to care for. If so, why did she shoot the stag, just because no offspring were seen? As a mother, why did she not extend her empathy as a parent further? Was there speciesism, seeing a certain animal to be more palatable than another? D also fed some meat to the pups when the mother wolf was discovered to be injured, unable to care for her pups. But did not earlier express disagreement with consuming of animal flesh? Was there speciesism, seeing certain animals to more lovable than others? There was panic when a pup excitedly bit her hand that was feeding. Why was this not related to humans literally and ungratefully biting into the flesh of animals, who were forced to toil for them? The script, in its attempts to be ‘smart’ thus displays these shortfalls with partial reasoning and cognitive dissonance.

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Please Be Mindful Of Your Speech, Namo Amituofo!

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