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==Animal philosophy, slaughter in art history, and the gaze in contemporary slaughter==
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==29: APR 30==
  
====Some Animal philosophy====
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===Assigned===
  
:*Think about the complexity of our "psychology of perception of animality"
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:'''Ethics Day 3'''
::*pets vs. non pets
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:*McPherson, Tristram. "The Ethical Basis for Veganism" 209-221; 229-236
::*loving food animals.
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:*Milligan, Tony. Chapter 4: "Contract Theories", from ''Animal Ethics: the basics'', 61-84.
::*psychology of snakes and vermin
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::*Why do we react differently to a kid kicking a can down the street vs. kicking a sheep's head down the street?
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::*Not hard for us to compartmentalize, but we experience '''cognitive dissonance''' at some cultural diffs: where our pets are their food animals or where their pets can become food animals.  Also, dissonance in spending on pets.  Extension of vet science requires us to price our love of our pets.
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===McPherson, Tristram. "The Ethical Basis for Veganism"===
  
:*Some theory -- start with Derrida's, "The Animal That I therefore am..." -- story of the philosopher's encounter with his cat. Notes from Slivinski 2012
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:*Defining Ethical Veganism
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::*Absolute vs. Modest definitions - absolute position difficult. not all animals sufferModest more typical meaning.
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::*Strength of modest thesis still admits variation, from grave prohibition to supererogatory behavior (beyond duty, like the bike commuter)
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::*Modal (having to do with necessity) fragility -- Is it absolutely wrong to consume animal products or "typically" wrong?  Wrong because of less essential conditions, like the state of animal agriculture or regulatory systems that allow excess suffering? (Do you admit a range and exceptions?)
  
::*So, maybe also philosophical sources of dissonance -- Rethinking subjectivity, we are now exposed to the gaze of the animal.  Is there a new kind of thinking that emerges if you take into account the gaze of the animal?  (Parallels -- if you take into account soil, your gut, dietary diseases of the industrial food system.) 
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:*Sources of Defense for Veganism
  
::*Obvious opening for a vegan argument, but consider other options.
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::*Self-interested Reasons -- the positive values of an animal free diet.
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:::*Doesn't get at non-dietary uses of animals.
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:::*Doesn't support absolute non-consumption.
  
:*Pair Derrida with the 19th century growth of two movements:  industrial slaughter, concern about Humane slaughter, societies to promote vegetarian and vegan diets. 
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::*Environmental Reasons -- strong arguments about the unsustainability of high levels of animal agriculture and animal consumption
::*Other pieces of the story.  Meat ideology -- partially based in fact.
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:::*But there may be a non-zero optimal level of animal agriculture (We saw this in Simon Fairlie's argument for "default animal production")
  
====Food and slaughter in Art History====
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::*Religious Reason -- He doesn't mention Judeo-Christian sources, but you could see from Soler how you might revive a spirituality of non-animal consumption based on God's creation of life and avoidance of taking life. 
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:::*Still not clear this involves an absolute prohibition. 
  
:*Some images of pre-modern slaughter.   
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::*Animal-focused Arguments
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:::*This is the avenue McPherson finds most promising, though he is sceptical of applying systematic theories (Like Regan's rights theory).  Too many ways of interpreting them. Highly contested.
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:::*'''Principle of non-suffering''':  "Other things being equal, it is wrong to cause suffering"
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:::*But note that our intuitions about killing and suffering might not map onto animals directly: Strong vs. Weak asymmetry. 218.
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::::*Weak - causing suffering worse than killing (torturing a kitten worse than killing it)  (kitten thought experiment on 2190.
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::::*Strong - wrong to cause suffering to an animal but not wrong to kill it.  McPherson sceptical of Strong: it seems wrong to kill an animal gratuituously.   
  
:*Add pics from Chicago stockyards and Testaccio, Rome
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::::*Still might be "defeasible" -- meaning it might admit of exceptions. 
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::::*Complications result from considering the Principle of non-suffering in relation to a prohibition against killing.  A "gap" between these principles and a strong case for veganism still exists.  This is what he means by the section title "Completing the Naive Argument" (221)
  
====Other ways of using gaze theory====
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::*Proposals for "closing the gap"
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:::*Individual Efficacy
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:::*Group Efficacy
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:::*Complicity
  
:*Said and neo-colonial gaze
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:*Complications for Vegan Arguments
:*Foucault's panopticon
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::*aggregation
:*The gaze as a way of periodizing pre-industrial, industrial, and hyper-slaughter.
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::*demandingness of principles (It's hard to be vegan)
::*Pre-industrial slaughter modeled the gaze on the butcher, who would normally have seen dressed meat and may have participated in slaughter.  2-3 degrees of separation in the gaze.  Butchers in US make good money.  Socially esteemed due to trust involved in buying meat.  In transition, typical to see cattle marched through city streets to slaughter.
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::*specificity of response
::*Industrial slaughter -- Involves the technical gaze of the engineer.  (Note mistake in early French slaughterhouse design.)  At the same time the work of industrial slaughter is done by immigrants (Chicago) or non-Romans (Testaccio).  (Oddly, Chicago Stockyard had tours.) We don't see the people who see the slaughter.  As industrial slaughter increases, we no longer see the animals either.  From dressed beef to meatpacking and industrial meat products.
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::*methodological burdens -- counter-intuitive.
::*Hyper-slaughter -- Post-gaze.  Inspectors can't see every animal.  Workers are "disappeared" through ICE and deportation.  Facilities moved out of cities.  Hyper-slaughter food chains involves less visible production (video prohibited, completely enclosed facilities).  Hyper-slaughter culture eliminates the body of the animal from the consumers sight (transition from older supermarkets in US and mercati in Italy).
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====Some Problems of Hyper-slaughter and its supply chain====
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===Milligan, Tony. "Contract Theories"===
  
=====For animals and eaters=====
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:*Reviews some basic positions.  Regan is more of a natural rights theorist, but contemp. animal rights isn't nec. Might be more about interests or rationally defensible social conventions.
 
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:*This might lead you to embrace a contractarian approach to animal rights, since it is more relational (unlike nat'l right)
:*Dismembering animals alive, hogs going into scalder alive
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:*notion of "original position" -- describes situations in which we should infer a rational agreement(example of emergency aid, 69)
 
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:*'''Big problem with using contract theory in animal ethics:'''  animal can't be parties to a contractRawls excludes them.
:*Lowering voltage on stunners -- belief that overstunned animals don't bleed thoroughly. Claim has been debunked.
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:*71: review of RawlsDoes it makes sense to ask the question: If you were behind the veil of ignorance and didn't know whether you would be a food animal or not, what principle of justice would you agree to?
 
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:*Problems: You might not care what happens if you turn out to be a pig. Or only care about painHuman excellences not being available.
:*Lack of rules on animal transport lead to animals freezing alive. 
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:*More problems: Do we abstract from concrete aspect of our identity (like being carnivores?)
 
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:*Milligan: Maybe it helps to think of animals like marginal humansThey need our advocacy, but they might not be parties to the contract.
:*Streamlined inspection has led to 6,000 inspectors "looking at" 8 billion animals a year.   
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:*Some efforts (Scanlon) to think of contract rights without the Rawlsian machinery of deliberation.  Just rational or reasonable agreement.
:*"We used to trim the shit off the meat, Then we washed the shit off the meatNow the consumer eats the shit off the meat."  USDA Inspector (in Eisnitz p. 155)
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:*Domestication as a Contract
 
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::*very popular justification for meat eating: it's part of the deal that is domestication.   Animal gets: existence ("'''opportunity of life'''") and care  Human gets: meat. Ironically, though, if you accept this, then curtailment of meat production is against the interests of animals.  Something seems to have gone wrong. Still, '''extinctionism''' is also an odd way of advocating for animals.  
:*No slaughter rules mandated for chickensAgain, belief that stunning prevents exsanguation. One plant 1/2 million a day. 
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:*Conclusion: Death is an extreme kind of payment in a contractEven if parties could agree to a contract covering domestic animal consumption, would we allow it? (Like consensual cannabalism contractsYikes.)
:*Streamlined inspection since 1985: 450 inspectors 1.5 billion birds91 birds a minute.
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=====For slaughterhouse workers and communities=====
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:*Containment pig farming, odor and waste. [https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KPkW4lg3K8Y  confinement operations and neighbors]
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:*Non-white often non-citizen workers are not well received in white rural townsHigh turnover, often increases in crime. Yet, undocumented slaughterhouse workers are preferred for their work ethic and their legal vulnerability.
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:*Workers health and vulnerability. -- pattern of deportation for worker's making compensation or injury claims.  
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:*2008 neurological disorders from pig brain mist.  On going concerns about exposure of meat workers to pathogens and "zoonotic transmissible agents" [https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2095342/]
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:*[https://metro.co.uk/2017/12/31/how-killing-animals-everyday-leaves-slaughterhouse-workers-traumatised-7175087/ Trauma from slaughter]  PTSD, but also PITS, found also in executioners, combat veterans, and Nazis in World War II.
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:*Injury rates in slaughterhouses higher in last 25years than for any industry (fitz 2010)Though recently some improvements.
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:*Early 1970's beef kill lines at 179/hr , by early 90s 400/hr (Fitzgerald, 2010)Now 1,000 to 1200/hr.
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Latest revision as of 14:43, 30 April 2019

29: APR 30

Assigned

Ethics Day 3
  • McPherson, Tristram. "The Ethical Basis for Veganism" 209-221; 229-236
  • Milligan, Tony. Chapter 4: "Contract Theories", from Animal Ethics: the basics, 61-84.

McPherson, Tristram. "The Ethical Basis for Veganism"

  • Defining Ethical Veganism
  • Absolute vs. Modest definitions - absolute position difficult. not all animals suffer. Modest more typical meaning.
  • Strength of modest thesis still admits variation, from grave prohibition to supererogatory behavior (beyond duty, like the bike commuter)
  • Modal (having to do with necessity) fragility -- Is it absolutely wrong to consume animal products or "typically" wrong? Wrong because of less essential conditions, like the state of animal agriculture or regulatory systems that allow excess suffering? (Do you admit a range and exceptions?)
  • Sources of Defense for Veganism
  • Self-interested Reasons -- the positive values of an animal free diet.
  • Doesn't get at non-dietary uses of animals.
  • Doesn't support absolute non-consumption.
  • Environmental Reasons -- strong arguments about the unsustainability of high levels of animal agriculture and animal consumption
  • But there may be a non-zero optimal level of animal agriculture (We saw this in Simon Fairlie's argument for "default animal production")
  • Religious Reason -- He doesn't mention Judeo-Christian sources, but you could see from Soler how you might revive a spirituality of non-animal consumption based on God's creation of life and avoidance of taking life.
  • Still not clear this involves an absolute prohibition.
  • Animal-focused Arguments
  • This is the avenue McPherson finds most promising, though he is sceptical of applying systematic theories (Like Regan's rights theory). Too many ways of interpreting them. Highly contested.
  • Principle of non-suffering: "Other things being equal, it is wrong to cause suffering"
  • But note that our intuitions about killing and suffering might not map onto animals directly: Strong vs. Weak asymmetry. 218.
  • Weak - causing suffering worse than killing (torturing a kitten worse than killing it) (kitten thought experiment on 2190.
  • Strong - wrong to cause suffering to an animal but not wrong to kill it. McPherson sceptical of Strong: it seems wrong to kill an animal gratuituously.
  • Still might be "defeasible" -- meaning it might admit of exceptions.
  • Complications result from considering the Principle of non-suffering in relation to a prohibition against killing. A "gap" between these principles and a strong case for veganism still exists. This is what he means by the section title "Completing the Naive Argument" (221)
  • Proposals for "closing the gap"
  • Individual Efficacy
  • Group Efficacy
  • Complicity
  • Complications for Vegan Arguments
  • aggregation
  • demandingness of principles (It's hard to be vegan)
  • specificity of response
  • methodological burdens -- counter-intuitive.

Milligan, Tony. "Contract Theories"

  • Reviews some basic positions. Regan is more of a natural rights theorist, but contemp. animal rights isn't nec. Might be more about interests or rationally defensible social conventions.
  • This might lead you to embrace a contractarian approach to animal rights, since it is more relational (unlike nat'l right)
  • notion of "original position" -- describes situations in which we should infer a rational agreement. (example of emergency aid, 69)
  • Big problem with using contract theory in animal ethics: animal can't be parties to a contract. Rawls excludes them.
  • 71: review of Rawls. Does it makes sense to ask the question: If you were behind the veil of ignorance and didn't know whether you would be a food animal or not, what principle of justice would you agree to?
  • Problems: You might not care what happens if you turn out to be a pig. Or only care about pain. Human excellences not being available.
  • More problems: Do we abstract from concrete aspect of our identity (like being carnivores?)
  • Milligan: Maybe it helps to think of animals like marginal humans. They need our advocacy, but they might not be parties to the contract.
  • Some efforts (Scanlon) to think of contract rights without the Rawlsian machinery of deliberation. Just rational or reasonable agreement.
  • Domestication as a Contract
  • very popular justification for meat eating: it's part of the deal that is domestication. Animal gets: existence ("opportunity of life") and care Human gets: meat. Ironically, though, if you accept this, then curtailment of meat production is against the interests of animals. Something seems to have gone wrong. Still, extinctionism is also an odd way of advocating for animals.
  • Conclusion: Death is an extreme kind of payment in a contract. Even if parties could agree to a contract covering domestic animal consumption, would we allow it? (Like consensual cannabalism contracts. Yikes.)