Sunday, 16 October 2011

TV chef says no difference from eating pork and eating puppies

Comments from TV chef Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall were published this week where he said that there was no difference between eating pork and eating puppies.

Views seemed to be mixed. Most people were appalled at the notion of eating dogs and couldn’t believe someone from a dog loving nation like the UK could even dare suggest such a thing.

Some, including vegetarians and vegans, thought that he had a point.

I’ve been a vegetarian for 25 years and a vegan for less than a year, so what I’m about to say is my opinion. I speak for myself, not for anyone else.

I thought that what HFW said was sick. Coming from a man who likes to eat road kill (I don’t scrape up any dead animals I find and shove them into a baking tin, I bury them – I’m funny like that) and who has also ate curried fruit bat in the past, this is not a call for people to re-examine their consciences where eating animals is concerned.

If a vegetarian or vegan had said what he said they’d have been highlighting the hypocrisy of people who eat some animals but wouldn’t eat others. Their message would be that every animal has the right to indulge in their normal behaviours and to not be farmed and killed. Therefore there would be no difference between eating pig and eating puppy.

But, if a meat eater like HFW makes a comment like that it’s as if he’s advocating extending the range of animals people eat. Why not when people already eat pigs?   

The other reason his comments were objectionable was because he was saying, ‘hey, if you eat meat, you should be willing to eat any animal whether it’s a piglet or a puppy.

Take aside the fact that dogs have the status as pets in most Western societies, do we really need someone advocating that when so many new animals are already being eating in the West? Animals like kangaroo, squirrel and shark?

That’s on top of the ones people eat that many people would find morally objectionable like horse (they eat horsemeat in Belgium and Germany and many other countries), monkey (in 2002 there were reports of monkey meat being sold in the UK) and cats (in certain Swiss cultures they eat cat meat).

We need there to be some animals people won't eat. There has to be a limit, because when there isn’t people will start eating anything.

Footnote - I've been very surprised after going on various message boards and groups to see that many vegans and vegetarians agree with HFW's comments. Everyone is entitled to their opinion (just as I am) but to people who genuinely believe that eating a puppy is the same as eating pork, I would ask this question - would you protest against/boycott a butchers or supermarket for selling puppy meat? If the answer is yes (as I hope it would be) why do you not do the same when stores sell pork?

Whether we like it not, certain animals like dogs are given a higher status in our society than ours and its just as well they are because then they'd be farmed and eaten too.

And that's how veggiegirl2011 see it.

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