Sunday, January 10, 2016

There Isn't a Dilemma

I love articles like this one that I found on Salon via a Stumble. When you have statments like:
Death is serious business that, for farm animals, denies them a future they’d otherwise have had
The author is ignoring that - were these animals not being raised for food-production - they would, at best, simply not exist. That is, there's no future have denied them. If you want to think that these animals were destined to exist - raised for food or otherwise - you ignore that such existence would be wholly wild. They'd be dying of starvation, illness, misadventure or predation.

Is it nice to think that food-animals raised with non-industrial techniques lead a better life before they end up on my plate? Sure. Is that the only reason for caring about where your food comes from? No. Note even close.

So, for me, there is no dilemma. The reason for non-industrial techniques is that the resultant product is generally a better product. I don't have to worry about the chemicals typically found in industrial food products. The food is I get is generally a better eating-experience.

Similarly, I have reduced worry of add-on ill-effects. I also don't need to worry that industrial techniques are going to create super-resistant, cross-species illnesses. I don't have to worry about shocks and shortages caused by explosions of illnesses in closely-confined stock (or the propensity for large stocks to have the kind of reduced genetic diversity that makes them more easily targeted by a single strain of illness). The impacts of other industrial products are also spread out to a degree that they're more-easily absorbed by the environment rather than overwhelming it.

Then again, what I've found in talking to people, is that the outlook of people who grew up like I did had a very different formative basis. I, and many of my peers, grew up outside of cities. Even if you weren't a farm-kid, you were close enough to where food was produced to have been exposed to what went into it.

To me, the only "ethical dilemma" that exists is that more people don't know where their food comes from. To most people, their exposure to the food-production process is what they see in the local supermarket. In an ideal world, everyone would have the opportunity to see how their food starts and how it finally ends up in the supermarket and on their plate.

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