Vegan Activism at Google New York Headquarters – What About Free Range Eggs and Local Meat?

by birtanpublished on September 10, 2020

I think we can debate the moral relativism and the subjectivity of morality but I think deep down we all have a a sense of what's right and what's wrong I think part of that comes from our ability to empathize and so we acknowledge that when someone's

Suffering that's not an action we should partake in and so I think that we see animals suffering when it's in front of us we acknowledge that that's something that's wrong but because we're so disconnected from the process there's

All these degrees of separation we never truly have to fill the burden of responsibility and so we never really truly have to empathize because they're always out of our minds and so in those moments we can kind of ignore that

Intuitive it kind of that moral Intuit ethat where I think we do have inside of us we can kind of side try that because we surround ourselves with other people have also distanced themselves and so that violence toward non-human animals

Almost becomes normalized in our mind and so I thought well why was the reason I animal products I mean it was taste when I said at the beginning I loved how these products taste it and that was really the reason I did it I mean I used

To come up with different excuses but it was taste for me I always said I loved the product and so why did I ever give it up so the question then becomes well the question asked the beginning what has higher value taste or life and

Simplified that even further the moral justification becomes sensory pleasure and so it the question then becomes a sensory pleasure alone a good enough moral justifier for our actions not just towards animals but in terms of every

Situation let's apply that again consistency and so without having to to name situations I think we can all think of our things in our mind that provide sensory pleasure to the oppressor but of course provides a huge amount of

Suffering to a victim and so the question becomes well is there an action justifiable because it provides pleasure to the oppressor well of course not so taste alone it is in armed itself doesn't provide a

Justification for what we do to animals and so I think what can happen is we paint a very bleak reality of farming and one issue that we can sometimes have is as we point at factory farming and we say well factory farming is the culprit

And what I'm describing now may be true when applied to a situation of intensive farming but in a situation of say local or organic or high welfare farming does then become an okay act that the notion of local families thought paradoxical in

Itself because it insinuates that geographical location you know creates welfare or creates happiness but of course every farm in every environment local to someone and it's not as if we travel the ones we get closer to become

Better simply because we're closer to them and so when people say well I buy from local farms is like that's completely irrelevant to this conversation because local means nothing in terms of what happens in the facility

But what about like free-range and what about say hi welfare and so before I was vegetarian even I'd only ever buy free-range eggs and I was a bit snooty about it and so I'd walk around the supermarket I have like my half a dozen

Or a dozen free-range eggs and I would like bacon and chicken everything in there and I'd see someone buying caged eggs and I think what a horrible person how evil must this person be like no just no regard for animals at all that's

Disgusting and I still have that a little bit when people buy caged eggs I'm like that's really bad you know but it's funny how if there's these inbuilt notions and so for me when I bought a box of free-range eggs what I do is I

Attribute my ideals of freedom onto those eggs you see that word free and it has connotations and so you apply those connotations onto the hens and so freedom to me and I'm sure to most of us just means living a good life whatever

That means living a life where we get to do what we want do things that come naturally to us I guess fundamentally a life of this free from exploitation is free from suffering that's free from pain and so

For me when I bought those box of eggs I'd say well those hens have lived a good life they've done the things that came naturally to them they've lived a life without pain without suffering without fear without exploitation and

That's why I bought them because I was fed that lie solved the idea and that made me comfortable and so we have to work out is whether or not free-range actually has those attributes of freedom placed

Upon those hens or wherever and are it's a marketing scheme to maybe ease our conscience and so all free-range hens come from hatcheries this is where the chicks are born now male chicks are useless to the industry they won't

Produce eggs and also they're not the same breeders the chickens that we slaughter for meat so they'll never grow to be profitable to the farmers and so what happens is as soon as they're born their furniture

Conveyor belts their sexed and the males and females are thrown to separate conveyor belts the males are taken to macerate errs so giant macerate is that ground them up alive as soon as the bond under the conveyor belt into a mass

Rater in blonde in the UK that happens to 30 to 40 million male chicks every single year and you think about the size of the UK tiny I think about size of America and also the amount of consumption in America you can think we

Can multiply that number by quite quite a huge amount now that the hens the the female chicks they'll be D beat and they'll be taken to these bands we label these as free-range bands but again in the UK a

Farmer can legally house 16,000 birds per barn which means he can legally house nine birds per square metre of space you think about the size of a square metre and you have nine hens on there and we call that free-range an or

Free-range means in the UK is they have to have access to an outside area and because of natural pecking orders and the sizes of the bands many of the hens will still never get to go outside and there's still cramped in these buttons

And so what we do is we take them out of small cages and we put them in one big cage we slap a label like free-range on it and all of a sudden we feel good about our purchases and so what we have to understand is these industries

Operate on supply and demand which means they only function if we buy those products from them and if we had two options in front of us and well this one contains this and this one doesn't I mean we're going to be more naturally

Compelled to buy the one that doesn't and so they have to sell us something that we want to buy and so they sell this idea of local of organic of how well for a free-range to ease our conscience but in terms of free-range

There is no freedom and so what about dairy because often what I hear in England and I presume it's the same here is his farmers will say happy cows produce happy milk this idea that consumers have to you know consume a

Very high quality milk and the only way farmers can get high quality milk is by making sure the cows are looked after and so therefore they would never neglect our mystery cows because well they need good quality milk to sell to

The consumer and when I arrived in the US a couple of weeks ago I went to Whole Foods to get some vegan I call them essentials at the beyond meat burger etc and in the fridge there's a brand called organic valley dairy milk and most

And so the label on there is so idyllic it's so beautiful and it basically plays into everything we want from dairy farming and so you have a mother a human mother with her baby and she's leaning in and they're petting say the the the

Cows face and it just it represents everything we want to be family-owned outside you know grass-fed outdoor pastures happy families happy animals but actually that's really insidious and we look at what happens in the dairy

Industry because cows and mammals who will only produce milk like humans to feed their children which means that farmers will forcibly impregnate the animals year after year to ensure they're continuously producing milk now

When the babies are born the calves will be taken away from their mothers normally of in the first 24 hours of life because if the calf is drinking the mother's milk that's less milk for the farmer to sell and after all the cow

Produces milk for humans right so why would a baby want to take their mother's milk that seems strange doesn't it and so when you have this organic valley milk it looks like Dilek but what it is is

It's quite insidious quite a nefarious almost because you have a a mother of her baby living in looking at a dairy cow who's had her baby taken away from her seemed so messed up to me and sometimes people trying to argue about

Well there's the psychological impact of that take a toll on dairy cows but dairy farmers themselves will admit that the mothers will cry out for their babies for days even weeks sometimes and they do suffer psychological grief from what

Happens because they're matriarchal beans they form matriarchal herds and they have an instinctive desire to nurture for their young just as we humans do as well and in fact I visited a dairy farm back in 2017 and I saw this

Process happening the farmer showed it to us and I actually ended up walking alongside the mother cow and we were following where her baby was being taken but the farmer closed the gate on us both and stopped us from being able to

Get any further as well it was looking at this mother cow and she looked at me and she looked really confused just complete confusion and that really broke my heart because I realized that these animals have no comprehension of why we

Do what we do to them no one can explain to them what's happening of course not and I thought about the times in my life I'd been most scared and often fear was coupled with confusion because I just didn't understand

And our amplifies the sensation of terror and fear if we don't know when it's going to end or even why it's happening in the first place and I thought well what if we could speak to these animals I mean let's say

That I could talk to that dairy cow in that moment or any of us could talk to the animals in that moment what would we say to them how would we describe it how would we justify it and I thought well we'd have to be honest we don't we and

We'd have to say look I know your baby's been taken away from you and I know that you're following because you want to see where your baby's going and raise your child just is of course a mother you woods but I really like the taste you're

Like tations in my coffee I like to go to Starbucks and have it you know heated up steamed or some coffee because it tastes good or I like to congeal your lap tations into a block called cheese and grater on my pasta so can you please

Be considerate of that or would we say look by note milk is a bit inconvenient for me so can you understand that I know you don't want to be forcibly impregnated but my convenience on the line here I mean or what would we say to

Pigs in gas chambers one thing I'm not talked about is how pigs are often killed pigs are heard into metal cages in the UK this is the most humane method of slaughter and they're dropped into an abyss less

Filled of an aversive mixture of co2 carbon dioxide and it causes the the pigs to suffer from respiratory distress they hyperventilate they just you know Frash around they even scream and then they die of course I thought well what

Would we say to the pigs and those gas chambers would we say I know I see you for a Shing and I hear you screaming but I really like the taste of your flesh in between two pieces of bread that I call a bacon sandwich or would we say to the

Animals like I know that you don't want to be exploited and I know you don't want to be killed but veganism is its kind of extreme and besides this is my personal choice so can you please respect that personal choice is

Something we hear about a lot and often people say that I'm forcing my views I think well that seems rather unusual to me because should a choice simply be respected because it's a personal choice I mean every action that we make is a

Choice we've personally chosen to make rhyming every decision we've personally chosen doesn't mean it's moral or immoral you know should someone's personal choice automatically justify the action that they're undertaking if I

Went to a shelter rescued a dog brought them home and then abused them myself personally chosen to do that but doesn't make it acceptable right so when we sight say something like personal choice whose personal choice do we consider

Other than our own because every single year trillions of animals in it in his trillions are killed they ever desire for life do we factor in that choice for life into that equation or do we just do something because we've always done it

And we don't question it and so all we could really say to the animals is that we couldn't say I'm really sorry because that'd be disingenuous we couldn't say it's a necessity and we have to because that would be a lie and I thought well

If we had to justify it how could we justify it if they were saying please don't or please stop or please don't do this to me would we then be able to look them in the eyes and say now I'm sorry

Too much I like your flesh too much so these love the questions that really made me want to be more vocal and what I do you

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