I follow The Precautionary Principle and so I do not advocate the exploitation of any animal, regardless of the complexity of their biology. I advocate Veganism. We have no need to use any animals, and if someday we find out that whomever animal is insentient, since we lived Vegan, then no harm done. If we someday find out they are sentient, then also, since we lived Vegan, no harm done.
Veganism destroys the least numbers of plants compared to a regular non-Vegan diet and ethic as well, and so, if someday we discover that plants were sentient all along, then we will have harmed the least number of plants (especially if we are able to eat a fruitarian diet where we live) and if we discover that we were right all along and plants are insentient, then also, no harm done.
Also, using nonhuman animals of any species for human interests fosters speciesism and does not shift animals away from the “property paradigm.” It manifests to the public as a lack of a coherent and consistent moral stance.
There is no such thing as “ostroVeganism.” Veganism means a specific thing and using animals for human interests is contradictory to that meaning.
Even if we thought that it was justifiable from a moral standpoint to use individuals of some species we think are insentient for our interests, that argument would still never morally justify using every other species of animal, who can all be easily proven capable of feeling pain, for our interests. In other words, even if we’re confused about where to draw the line regarding who we use and don’t use, the line is still not rationally at “whoever we deem morally inferior, regardless of their ability to suffer.” So regardless of any other argument, Veganism is still the moral obligation of every single human reading this.
Instead of calling ourselves Vegans and then trying to figure out how much we can get away with exploiting anyone through a “loophole” of scientific proof, we should be starting off by drawing our moral line in order to eliminate even the possibility of the maximum amount of harm, and then examining whether we can make exceptions on the side of caution afterwards.
If you think animals matter morally, don’t try to find a nice way to do the wrong thing. Go Vegan and educate others about Veganism.
If you’re not already Vegan, and you think animals matter morally, then please go Vegan. It’s easy and great for you, incredible for the animals, and wonderful for the planet. If you’re already Vegan, please educate non-Vegans about why they should go Vegan. Please rescue, volunteer, adopt, foster, spay, and neuter the nonhuman refugees of domestication whenever you can. Please feed your nonhuman family Vegan where you can. These things are the most important, morally responsible things to do and are desperately needed by everyone.
To learn more about Abolitionist Veganism and the issues I’ve outlined in this post, check out The Master List Of Vegan Info:
Disclaimer: My only goal with this list is to produce as comprehensive a resource for Vegan information as possible. I am 100% Abolitionist Vegan and 100% against exploitation of nonhuman or human animals, any type of violence against human or nonhuman persons or property, welfare regulation, any form of speciesism, ethnic bigotry, genderism, ableism, heterosexism, etc., any of the large governmental or non-governmental nonhuman animal organizations, “happy meat,” vegetarianism, veg*nism, Meat-Free Mondays, or other forms of reductionism and anything else that makes it seem like any form of violence or exploitation of animals is ok. If any of those positions are endorsed on any site in this list, or any language is used to imply that, it’s not that I included that link because I agree, but simply because I don’t control every bit of information on all of these sites.