Hungry Scruples

One of the most discussed (or should I say – disagreed upon) topic is that of vegetarianism. This has always been, and I’m afraid, will be a green discussion topic. Anways, this post comes as a reply to Pavan‘s post – A what-tarian?, which happens to be a reply to another post by Vimal. (I kinda like these linked posts! 🙂 )

Pavan mentions two sides to the argument, one the vegetarians’ where he mentions Sentience Quotient and the fact that many vegetarians literally hate non-vegetarians. And the non-vegetarian’s argument that man was originally a non-vegetarian. I’ll address both these issues below.

Firstly, I’m a vegetarian too; but I wish to elaborate. I’m a vegetarian not by force, not by the bounds of my religion nor by any fear. I’m vegetarian simply by choice. A choice that I’m happy about. And also, I’m not a person to judge people based on their food habits and start hating them instantly, which sounds n00bish anyway!

I totally agree with the Sentience Quotient, and second the idea that no animal should be killed for food! Also, if you did that, what difference would there be between a man and a wild animal? Especially when the man is gifted with the power of reasoning and he refuses to use it! However, I condemn the act of vegetarians hating the non-vegetarians; I wouldn’t hate them. I’d be sorry for the animal which sacrificed itself to satifsy someone’s pleasure of taste. Secondly, I know people who are very uncomfortable with eating with non-vegetarians – which is completely understandable and I find nothing wrong in they expressing their uneasiness. Though the way they do it matters: they could try and ask the non-vegetarian to move elsewhere (which can be pretty offensive to the latter), instead they themselves could stay away from the non-vegetarian until his meal is complete. Also, if its a friend, they can try and make him understand that he is killing an animal when there are better ways to satisfy his hunger; I doubt if that will work anyways. At the most, it may result in another argument and finally as a post in another blog elsewhere. 😛

Coming to the point that man was a non-vegetarian from the beginning: Man was a nudist, hairy, and a smelly barbarian too. Why change everything else and retain the eating habits? Only because of the momentary pleasure that the taste brings? It is also accepted that any nutrient that is obtained from animals can be obtained ‘vegetatively’; one exception being animal fat – which man doesn’t need by the way. Also, man then was scientifically illiterate and ignorant. How can such a comparison be even speculated? With all due respect to whoever supports this theory: Does it mean that they are still so?

Its sad though, when non-vegetarians use milk and silk (LOL! They rhyme as well! 😛 ) as points against vegetarians. Firstly, there is no killing for milk. Secondly, I’ve heard people say using milk is stealing a calf’s food. To this, I can give you an image of what really happens since I’ve lived close to a cow-shelter for almost all my life. When the cow gives birth to the calf, for the first 30-45 days, it secretes very thick milk much higher in nutrition. This milk is not used by people. The calf is fed only this apart from a few supplements, until a stipulated period of time, probably until the calf can walk on its own. After this thick milk, the cow gradually starts producing normal milk. This is when the milk is used by people. And by which time, the calf is ready to eat the same food as the cow. (This information is not a citing – its from what I have seen to be in practice)

Then, the silk which is obtained from an insect – silkworm. I have to say that all people share the same mindset towards insects (apart from a few queer ones who eat them!). I may sound a little blunt but, don’t you kill a mosquito or a swat a cockroach when you find one lurking in your house? If I found a way to make money from them and bought it from you and if I killed it, would it make any difference – at least, to the dead insect? And silkworm rearing has been in practice for over 3500 years now and there have been no great impact on the bio-diversity of nature because of it.

On a concluding note, just like Pavan said, I only hope that someday people would understand and change. 🙂 I’m sure I’ll be disagreed on a lot of points. I welcome all your opinions – just keep them vegetarian! 😀

Scruples (n) : An uneasy feeling arising from conscience or principle that tends to hinder action.


7 responses to “Hungry Scruples”

  1. Dude… i was afraid i would feel guilty by reading your post… so i took it part by part and read it slowly… fortunately i ought my guilt effectively… 😛
    even as veg-ism and non-veg-ism are by choice, it is in the nature of meat to drag tongues to it… man, in earlier days, was a nudist, hairy and smelly. but none of these factors are dealt with comfort in present world and so they’re not practised.
    I feel the non-veg-ans should leave meat-eating by choice or by a divine realisation. till then whatever happens, meat will prevail.

  2. Effectively I see.. What was cooking at the time, eh? 😛

    Anyways, yeah, but rather than comfort, I’d prefer to call it pleasure.

    “…should leave…”? LOL! I guess, free will and divine intervention ARE THE ONLY things which would probably get them to change! 😛

  3. @Manoj
    I agree. Linked posts are cool 😀 Anyway, when you said that about silkworms and cockroaches, did you realize that a population-explosion of the latter is considered to be an infestation and the former is considered to be “culturing”? Cockroaches are not reared as silkworms. They are a very special(even though I hate them) species. Did you know they can withstand high amounts of radiation? Coming to the point, they are not reared to be killed for someone else’s profit. And I stand by self-defense. I know they are not dangerous. But a roach infestation can threaten the lives of many people. But I don’t wish to argue very much on this topic as I have dedicated a whole post to it. 🙂

  4. Cockroaches, they’ve been here before the dinosaurs. We’ll all dead from our own doing and they’d still roam the earth. BTW, only about 7 of the thousands of species of roaches are considered pests.

    But, yep, let’s talk about animals. I have no compunction nor scruples in butchering animals for sustenance, not taste. Fact, I’ve lost count of all the animal life I’ve taken.

    I used to hunt birds as a kid too (bad, bad me). But my grandpop who taught me how to shoot have 1 rule in hunting, I have to eat whatever I killed. Thus I learned a valuable lesson in life early on, take a life only for survival (like daily sustenance), never for fun or gluttony.

    I also learned to respect birds and wild animals and I don’t shoot them no more. Hey, I became a forester and is now fighting to save their homes. 😀 The tribal folks I lived with in the past are at peace with the Earth yet they are not avowed vegetarians although plant life does make up most of their diet.

    So it really gets me when some vegan insinuates that he’s better than us regular fellows. I wonder how much carbon footprint does being a vegan in a large city takes. How many acres of forests were cut down to produce their lettuces, radishes, and tomatoes. How much carbon dioxide is spewed into the air to transport their precious vegetable from the farm to their table.

    BTW, eating insects is not queer. 🙂 I have eaten a lot of “exotic” food myself. A lot of cultures regularly incorporate bugs into their diet. In Vietnam, rats are considered a delicacy. In Africa and some of our provinces, locusts are seasonal munchies.

    It’s a way of making use of pests. In Vietnam, for instance, the rice fields will be over ran by rats if nobody hunts them. Poisoning the mangy pests will release toxins to the environment. They are good sources of protein and taste like chicken. I should know, I’ve eaten forest rats. 😀

    In the end, it’s like everyone have their own place in the giant puzzle called life. Everyone has the right to be a ragged circle or triangle or square but everybody can’t be a circle or a triangle or a square. The circles can’t hate the squares because they maintain the balance.

    Wow, that’s a lot of blah blah. 😀 In conclusion, I had 2 fresh tomatoes, 3 grilled eggplants, and 5 grilled okras for lunch. How vegan can a meal get? 🙂

  5. Hey Bong! 🙂

    Thanks for the comments! I still have to make up my mind that insects are eatable. The thought itself makes my stomach do somersaults! Anyways, I guess eating insects isn’t bad after all, I mean, you’ll be relieving the place of the pests. 😛

    About forest land being used up for agriculture is a sad state of affairs. Its definitely becoming hard to feed the ever-growing population. 😦

    About everyone fitting into the puzzle of life, well, all I can say is you can fit in a little better. 🙂

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