Animal rights is a binary matter: you exploit animals or you go vegan.
There’s no third choice.
You cannot exploit “compassionately.” You just exploit. Your “compassion” is about making you feel better about continuing to exploit animals. “Compassionate” exploitation has nothing to do with the obligation of justice that we owe nonhuman animals.
Justice requires that we stop using animals altogether. “Humane” exploitation is nothing more than a fantasy. All animal use involves torture. And even if it did not, and even if we could treat animals we exploit “humanely,” we cannot justify using and killing animals for our palate pleasure, sense of fashion, entertainment, or any other purpose.
But make no mistake about it: “compassionate” animal exploitation is nonsense, just as “compassionate” slavery or “compassionate” genocide is nonsense.
If you are not vegan, go vegan. It’s easy; it’s better for your health and for the planet. But, most important, it’s the morally right thing to do. You will never do anything else in your life as easy and satisfying.
Gary L. Francione
©2011 Gary L. Francione