… Page eleven. Surprisingly, taking this page by page allows me to digest this better and point out all the little shit along the way. It’s a good way to separate the individual strands of bullshit. Even though bullshit doesn’t have strands.
Smokers will tell you there is nothing like an ex-smoker.
No. Go straight to Hell, do not pass Go, do not collect $200.
I have done my best to avoid to avoid a tone of moral superiority and aim for engagement. I hope I have succeeded. Ultimately I would rather be helpful than right.
No. I just… I can’t. It’s too much.
The underlying values that vegetarians claim to honor—
Translation: if you really honor those values, you’ll agree with me. Neener-neener.
—justice, compassion, sustainability—are the only values that will create a world of connection instead of domination; a world where humans approach every creature—every rock, every raindrop, all our furred and feathered siblings—with humility, awe and respect;
Slow down there, cowboy! I think we have a misunderstanding here. You seem to be of the mind that “creature” means “any object that exists, ever.” My definition’s different, see—a “creature” is an animal (or, potentially, extraterrestrial organism) who experiences their own life. And “life” means something too: it’s more than an existence. Raindrops and rocks are not organic; by definition, they don’t have life.
Here’s the thing. You have to have the ability to experience, first-person, what is done to you to qualify for the title of “creature.” It’s why I honestly don’t care about fetuses—they’re gestating so that their bodies can get to the point where that experience of life can be supported, and until they are actually experiencing it the point is moot. An animal has the right to be left alone because they experience their lives; an animal (and for the record, I’m not specifically talking about non-human ones here) has the right to not be forced into starvation when there are masses of food just lying around, but the fence wants you to give them money for it. Because the experience of life is valuable, and inherent in that is the idea that quality of life is worthy of being encouraged and not maliciously or capitalistically restricted.
Other things have “rights” by proxy, things that don’t have lives or don’t experience them. I can say that an ecosystem has rights, and what I mean is that humans have an “anti-right” to fuck with that ecosystem-symbiotic and for this purpose synonymous with every individual animal belonging to that ecosystem. In that sense, ecosystems are like a sovereign nation; its rights are the collective rights of every animal within it.
I can be impressed and delighted by rain, but I don’t attribute to it the rights deserved by organisms who experience their own lives.
… the only world with a chance of surviving the abuse called civilization. It is in this hope that such a world is possible that I offer this book.
I get the strong feeling that the world Lierre Keith says would happen if we all agreed with her would actually be entirely nightmarish.
I don’t want your revolution if anyone gets farmed. That’s not a revolution; it’s a ripoff.
That’s the end of chapter one.