Plant tormentors: reflections on the article by O. Kozyrev

Vegetarianism for religious reasons is not formally discussed in the article: “I understand those who do not eat meat for religious reasons. This is part of their faith and it makes no sense to even go in this direction – a person has the right to believe in what is important to him. <…> Let’s move on to the category of interlocutors for whom non-religious aspects are important.” The main provisions of the author are as follows: Next comes the question: then why did the plants “guilty” before the animals? The article makes ethical vegetarians think about the appropriateness of their lifestyle. I am not an ethical vegetarian. But since the article made me think too, I consider it acceptable to state my answer to the question raised. Any diet, if it is thought out and balanced, satisfies the body’s needs for vitamins and minerals. At will, we can be both “predators” and “herbivores”. This feeling exists in us by nature: try to show a child a scene of a massacre – and you will see his extremely negative reaction. The scene of plucking fruits or cutting ears does not evoke such an emotional reaction, outside of any ideology. Romantic poets loved to lament over “an ear that perishes under the sickle of a murderous reaper”, but in their case this is only an allegory for depicting the fleeting life of a person, and by no means an ecological treatise … Thus, the formulation of the article’s question is suitable as an intellectual and philosophical exercise, but alien to the palette of human feelings. Perhaps the author would be right if ethical vegetarians followed the well-known joke: “Do you like animals? No, I hate plants. But it is not. Emphasizing that vegetarians in any case kill plants and bacteria, the author accuses them of craftiness and inconsistency. “Life is a unique phenomenon. And it is foolish to shred it along the line of meat-plants. This is unfair to all living things. It’s manipulative, after all. <...> In such a situation, potatoes, radishes, burdock, wheat have no chance. Silent plants will absolutely lose to furry animals.” Looks convincing. However, in reality, it is not the worldview of vegetarians, but the idea of ​​the author “either eat everyone or eat no one” that is childishly naive. This is tantamount to saying – “if you can not show violence – then let it come out of the screens of computer games on the streets”, “if you can not restrain sensual impulses, then arrange orgies.” But is this how a person of the XNUMXst century should be? “It has always amazed me that among animal rights activists one can find aggression towards people. We live in an incredible time when such a term as eco-terrorism appeared. Where does this desire to be blind come from? Among vegan activists, one can meet aggression, hatred, no less than among those who go hunting.” Of course, any terrorism is evil, but quite peaceful protests of the “greens” against blatant violations of human rights are often called this big name. For example, protests against the import of nuclear waste (from Europe) into our country for processing and disposal (in Russia). Of course, there are fanatical vegetarians who are ready to strangle the “man with a steak”, but the majority are sane people: from Bernard Shaw to Plato. To some extent, I understand the feelings of the author. In harsh Russia, where a few decades ago not sheep, but people were sacrificed on the altars of concentration camps, was it before “our smaller brothers”? But criticism of the compassion of ethical vegetarians – the most sincere and vulnerable part of the “non-bloodthirsty” community – is a criticism of the idea of ​​compassion in general, as a feeling of “inappropriate” in “modern post-crisis Russia.”

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