Erdős L: Veganism versus meat-eating... (2015)

Erdős L.
2015
Veganism versus meat-eating, and the myth of ‘‘root capacity’’: A response to Hsiao.
Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 28: 1139-1144.
Angol nyelvű összefoglaló: 

The relationship between humans and non-human animals has received considerable attention recently. Animal advocates insist that non-human animals must be included in the moral community. Consequently, eating meat is, at least in most cases, morally bad. In an article entitled ‘‘In Defense of Eating Meat’’, Hsiao argued that for the membership in the moral community, the ‘‘root capacity for
rational agency’’ is necessary. As non-human animals lack this capacity, so the argument runs, they do not belong to the moral community. Consequently, harming non-human animals for human nutrition can be justified. In this short comment I would like to highlight some of the most important errors of the above argument, primarily from the perspective of a biologist. I conclude that assuming the existence
of a mysterious ‘‘root capacity for rational agency’’ is a biological nonsense. It cannot be verified, and it only obscures reality. In my opinion, the greatest problem with Hsiao’s argument is that it tries to defend anthropocentrism, a view that has presumably been the very cause of the spoiled non-human–human relationships. Perhaps adopting a vegan lifestyle is a better solution than quieting one’s
conscience.