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Humane Exploitation?

July 15, 2019
Source Vegan Education Group


Source Species Revolution
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Over the last few decades, there has been an general increase in our compassion towards other animals. Animal-exploiting industries have tried to capitalize on our empathy and awareness by attempting to sell us the myth of humane animal exploitation.

The very existence of the concepts of “humane slaughter” and “humane animal products” is testimony to the increasing awareness about nonhuman welfare and suffering. Industries are responding to the fact that more and more humans are starting to care about other animals. However, this form of exploitation, however “humane,” falls short of providing any meaningful welfare reforms to enslaved animals for the reasons discussed below.

1. Humane exploitation is betrayal

Even if we assume that some exploiters treat nonhuman animals compassionately before killing them, it does not make the concept any less cruel. Imagine a guardian or a parent killing a human child after giving them a very happy life – would we consider that humane? Killing someone who trusts you to take provide them care and love is a violation of that trust. “Humane slaughter” is not loving or kind, it’s betrayal.

2. Humane exploitation is speciesist

Speciesism, like other forms of bigotry and discrimination, is unjust and unethical. If we would not enslave humans for food, there is no rational reason to do it to beings of other species. All sentient beings deserve the right to not be treated as objects.

3. Humane exploitation is mostly a marketing ploy

Multiple investigations into “humane farms” have shown widespread cruelty and abuse. It is very clear that many corporations use the humane myth to exploit our empathy and compassion towards other animals. If corporations really cared about animals, they would completely stop exploiting them for food.

4. The problem is use, not just cruelty

The root cause of animal abuse in “farms,” labs, circuses, and zoos is that animals are there in the first place. Whenever we see other animals as commodities to be used, abuse naturally follows. Why should we expect animal exploiters to be kind to those they profit off of? Why should we expect anything but abuse from those who imprison and murder animals?

5. There is no such thing as the humane exploitation of sentient beings

Animals are sentient beings who want to live free with their friends and family. There simply isn’t a humane way of killing someone who does not want to die. And there isn’t a humane way of enslaving someone who wants to be free. Animals deserve more than “humane” exploitation. All animals deserve to be happy, safe, and free.

We can keep trying to find right ways to do the wrong thing or we can reject nonhuman exploitation completely. The answer to the widespread and systemic abuse of animals does not lie in bigger cages, longer chains, or larger tanks; it lies in the absolute rejection of nonhuman commodification. It lies in the total liberation of nonhumans animals.

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just by its definition
exploitation is not humane
and anyone who thinks so
is really quite insane!!!!

Karen Lyons Kalmenson

6 Comments leave one →
  1. karenlyonskalmenson permalink
    July 15, 2019 8:02 am

    just by its definition
    exploitation is not humane
    and anyone who thinks so
    is really quite insane!!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. July 16, 2019 1:28 am

    You would think no-one of sound mind could possibly disagree. But unfortunately, there are lots of good, decent, kind people, even ‘animal-lovers’, who DO think animals are there to be used, and see us anti-speciesists as some weird cult. There are plenty of others, less kind and decent who believe other humans are there to be used too. I do think that some campaigning for better conditions for farmed animals has helped raise public awareness of the issues of nonhuman animal exploitation. It’s often part of a process that brings vegans to where they are now. We just need to keep on exposing ‘humane’ exploitation for what it is, as you are doing 💕🐾

    Liked by 1 person

    • July 16, 2019 9:11 pm

      So true and very good points. I remember, years and years ago, there was a consumer push for “kinder” veal as the result of relentless exposure and activism. I wasn’t involved, but I remember reading about the outcome, which was that the veal crates were constructed in a less “cruel” manner (I don’t know how this could be achieved as they are inherently cruel). In any case, the result? People thought this was “kind”, they felt GOOD about eating babies. Veal consumption then increased dramatically. And MORE babies were mass-produced, exploited, and killed. This, in turn, positively resulted in a greater-held understanding, belief, and practice of abolitionism.

      Thank you, my dear. ❤


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