Dominick Mezzapesa - Wildlife Planet
Julian Baggini is a British philosopher who wrote an absolutely absurd article, defending dog-meat eating festivals.
I thought it best to let the readers, read his unedited comments and arguments. Wildlife Planet will make our counter arguments known at the end of his writing and prove to him how ill-informed he is.
The CNN Baggini Article
By Julian Baggini, British philosopher and writer.
(CNN) It's that time of year again when the Lychee and Dog Meat Festival in Yulin, China sets off a global debate on animal welfare and the limits of multicultural tolerance.
In previous years some 10,000 dogs have been slaughtered and eaten over the 10-day festival.
In the West, reaction is divided between those who vigorously condemn the festival and those who claim that it is a kind of cultural imperialism to judge China by our own values.
Both are half-right and half-wrong.
Take the critics of the festival first. There is certainly plenty for them to truly indignant about.
There is a belief among some that the dog meat tastes better if the animal is slaughtered when distressed, and there are even accusations that the animals are sometimes skinned alive.
However, often the critics find it unacceptable that dogs are being caged, killed and eaten at all.
Such complaints are justified when they come from vegans who are equally upset about the conditions of pigs and cows in western industrial farms.
But they are simply hypocritical when they come from carnivores who happily eat intensively reared pigs, or even from vegetarians whose milk and cheese comes from cattle kept in such poor conditions that large swathes of the herds are lame.
However, those who say any criticism at all is a kind of moral imperialism are also guilty of lazy thinking. Almost everyone believes that respect for difference has its limits.
I know of no one who in the name of cultural diversity defends the barbaric practices of ISIS, the chillingly efficient holocaust perpetuated by the Third Reich, or the execution of homosexuals and atheists in some Islamic countries.
What presents itself as open-minded tolerance can very easily become a kind of condescension, as though the Chinese cannot be expected to live up to our highest ideals.
In fact, protest against the Yulin festival began in China, where retired school teacher Yang Xiaoyun paid thousands of dollars to save dogs and cats from the festival, and celebrities such as Chen Kun, Yang Mi and Fan Bingbing have spoken out against it.
Although dog eating is a tradition in parts of China, the Yulin festival was only started in 2009 and is not endorsed by the local government.
What I also find troubling about issues like this is how they insidiously bring out the xenophobe in otherwise liberal people on both sides of the argument.
When I previously wrote about the festival, one person who ranted against me tweeted that all Koreans were evil because they ate dogs.
Such blatantly racist sentiments are rarely expressed so openly but I fear many who condemn the Yulin festival are also confirming their own prejudices about "backward" Asian peoples who are inherently cruel and incapable of being sympathetic towards animals.
The readiness to believe the worst about the Chinese also comes out in the way in which many people sharing their anger on social media accept the stories of cruelty without checking for themselves that they are rife.
Check your objections
Seeing one video of one dog being beaten is not enough to condemn the whole festival, just as knowing that there have been abuses in some Western abattoirs does not condemn the whole meat industry.
Westerners who feel appalled by the Yulin festival need to check that their objections are based on robust values and not just a sentimental preference for cute, friendly animals.
Then, they should check that the stories they hear are true, which it seems they too often are.
Then, they should think hard about the right way to express their disapproval. Some claim that social media pressure from the West has led to a decline in the number of dogs killed to around 1,000, but it is hard to know what is really responsible for the drop.
Usually any perception of outside "Western" pressure is counterproductive for a campaign.
Ultimately this is an issue for the Chinese to resolve themselves.
Backing groups like the Chinese Animal Protection Network shows both respect for the Chinese people and faith in the possibility that some values at least are truly universal.
Wildlife Planet Replies
Dominick Mezzapesa - Wildlife Planet
Mr Baggini wrote "But they are simply hypocritical when they come from carnivores"
No, they are not, sorry carnivores are not being hypocritical in their condemnation of dog and cat meat eating festivals.
Our "Western" farming meat for eating and what the Chinese, Vietnamese and some other countries are doing is like comparing apples and Oranges.
Yes, we still have a ways to go but, we certainly are not cramming these animals in cages and leaving them for days to increase their stress levels so they taste better. While we still have far too many farms like those run by Perdue, everyday more and more "meat farms" are changing over to free range or providing the animals with cleaner, more spacious environments.
Another very big difference is America and many other countries have laws to make sure these animals are treated ethically and when the time comes, are put down, quickly, painlessly and as humanly as possible.
In Western society we do not skin the animals alive or throw them into a pot of boiling water, pushing them back in with a broomstick when they try desperately to escape the pain of being boiled alive.
We do not take pleasure in the pain that these cats and dogs suffer. We do not get overjoyed from their screams of agony, because these morality deprived individuals believe they will taste better.
I find it most disgusting when people try to defend Dog and Cat Meat eating festivals by claiming "You eat meat too" because it's only a legitimate argument when you find yourself on playground filled with toddlers.
If you cannot comprehend the difference between a chicken and a dog, either mentally, or historically then you'll never have the capacity to argue against me or anyone else, that argue these festivals need to be shuttered.
Dogs and Cats possess an incredible intelligence and have been our loyal companions for thousands of years. While we as a race were running around in animal skins and drawing pictures on cave walls, Dogs were protecting us from predators, when man was hard pressed to do so alone.
Egyptians believed Cats were a direct conduit to the Gods and in some cultures, Cats were even considered as Gods.
I have yet to read about ancient chickens that protected us from wolves? Nor have I seen any ancient paintings that show a child sleeping peacefully in bed, her arms wrapped around her loving cow. So the "We Eat Meat" argument is ludicrous and just as you declared, just "Lazy Thinking"
Since you are so ill informed I will educate you on facts rather that of assumption, which most of your argument centers around.
If in Kansas City they were having a BBQ festival, the cooks are not out stealing Mrs. Jones pet calf or robbing Mr Smiths prized piglets.
There are NO Dog Meat Raising farms anywhere in Asia. So where do these 10-20,000 dogs and cats come from? They're pets stolen from loving families, crammed into chicken wire cages, stacked on scooters and are driven hundreds of miles to be sold to restaurants that, then slaughter these pets in the most horrific ways imaginable.
The last and in my opinion the most nonsensical argument you contend is "It's Racist" to speak out against these festivals.
This is just another shining example of your laziness in researching and reporting on this matter.
"You're a racist" It's the first thing a person says when they have no legitimate argument against something they are debating.
Yes, there are a rare few who will cross the line and label Chinese "Chinks" or "Slanty Eyed Killers" and I feel they are wrong and defeat their own argument because, while they may have had a legitimate message, there name calling makes what they say, now irrelevant.
But saying or writing "Chinese" is not racist. Let's start by pointing out the obvious, there are many more Chinese who are against this festival than the amount of people from all other races combined. Every argument against a city like Yulin, barely has anything to do with race.
Yes, Chinese is always mentioned, but how could it not be when the festival is in China, started by Chinese and those who argue for it, claim it's a Chinese tradition, which of course it is not.
While some other ethnicities do attend, the over-whelming majority in attendance, and the driving force behind the festival are Chinese, so merely mentioning them is not "Racist"
Your "Racist" excuse grows even more pathetic, when it seems no one mentions race or racism when it comes to the slaughter of Elephants for their Ivory, or Rhino's for their horn, or Tigers to make Tiger bone soup.
Since your article clearly shows your lack of intelligence and insight, I will clue you into the fact that Rhino Horn and Tiger Bones are used in traditional Chinese and Asian medicine, the ivory taken from slaughtered Elephants are carved into small trinkets that the vast majority of Chinese and Asians believe will deliver them good luck or health.
But, just like the Dog and Cat meat eating festivals, pointing out that the Chinese or Asians are the prime drivers of the illegal poaching of our endangered wildlife, does not make it a racist remark.
There are 1000 people who argue against these festivals or poaching using logical arguments to every 1 person using racist slurs in theirs.
What I found most offensive about your story is you as a person. You actually had the audacity to write "Seeing one video of one dog being beaten is not enough to condemn the whole festival"
How utterly disgusting of you to think that your readers are so low-brow that you would actually believe they would accept your bullshit? Or is it, that since you are a so-called "Philosopher" you feel that you are just mentally superior to your few uncultured, slow-witted readers?
There are hundreds of stories, thousands of pictures and videos that show the inhumanity that is prevalent in every corner of this festival. Without question, it has more than earned every word written and every story told, condemning this barbaric practice.
To insult our intelligence with your stupidity makes you just as moronic, maybe even more so, then someone using racial slurs.
I'll close by lowering myself to your level and using your childish "one Video" logic.. Because one person used a racial slur, you then condemn and label the millions that speak out as RACIST?
Feel free to voice your well educated and well informed opinion to Julian Baggini, his twitter handle is @microphilosophy or on click here for his facebook page
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