Someone said to me today (in an email): “I’m totally for animal rights but I don’t think that means I have to be for women’s rights or gay rights or whatever.”
Think about the logic. Speciesism is wrong because it’s like racism, sexism, heterosexism, etc., which also involve focusing on an irrelevant criterion (race or sex or sexual orientation or whatever) to justify not according equal consideration.
We can’t say that speciesism is wrong because it’s like these other wrong things but we don’t have a position about these other wrong things.
Of course we do.
And that position is that all discrimination is wrong. Period. It doesn’t matter whether it’s discrimination based on race, sex, sexual orientation, class, age, etc. It’s wrong.
If you say that speciesism is wrong but you don’t have a position about other wrongful types of discrimination, all you do is reinforce the notion that “animal people” do not care about humans.
And the abolitionist movement is not about misanthropy.
If you are not vegan, please go vegan. Veganism is about nonviolence. First and foremost, it’s about nonviolence to other sentient beings. But it’s also about nonviolence to the earth and nonviolence to yourself.
Gary L. Francione
Professor, Rutgers University
©2012 Gary L. Francione