Equal Consideration of Interests and Our Moral Obligation

675 Words3 Pages
“We are, quite literally, gambling with the future of our planet - for the sake of hamburgers” (Peter Singer, Animal Liberation). To me, this quote could be taken in so many different ways. Singer may mean that we are tampering too much with the food chain of our world, which could eventually cause complete collapse. He may even mean that we are killing innocent animals for our own benefit, but we don’t know what this could lead to. Other humans maybe? Who knows? Whatever the true meaning of this quote may be, Singer’s point is very clear and I would definitely agree with him - most of the people on this earth have a duty to become vegetarians, for moral purposes. Peter Singer’s argument for animal equality is mainly dependent on the principle of equality. The principle of equality states that we as humans are all equal in a moral sense, meaning that we are each permitted to equal consideration of our interests. Singer also states that the principle of equality cannot only depend on specific qualities of humans (such as race), which would mean that it cannot only be applied to humans either. By this, Peter Singer means that non-human animals should also receive equal consideration of their interests, but only if they are sentient. Anything that is sentient is able to feel both pain and pleasure. In my opinion, sentience is the most important part of Singer’s entire argument because it gives clear reason to why most of the human race should become vegetarian. Singer’s argument for vegetarianism (and just his beliefs in general) is based completely on utilitarianism. He would argue that by eating meat, we do not maximize overall pleasure and actually causes unnecessary suffering. The reason that the suffering is unnecessary is that ... ... middle of paper ... ... me to kill this little rabbit, but I am going to do it anyways.” They do it simply because they need to. Humans, on the other hand, do this all the time. As humans, we not only contemplate the moral issue of eating meat, but we take it a step further. What I am talking about is that we actually make the decision to cause unnecessary suffering to animals by eating them, when we have alternative options to eat. Peter Singer would also argue that humans are generally smarter than animals so to follow in the footsteps of animals would be a bit ridiculous. We cannot look up to animals for advice and guidance when it comes to ethical decisions because we are fully capable of making these decisions on our own. It is important to remember that Peter Singer isn’t even necessarily arguing that you give up eating animals completely – just the sentient ones. In conclusion,

More about Equal Consideration of Interests and Our Moral Obligation

Open Document