Actor Joaquin Phoenix raised this question a few weeks ago in his acceptance speech for Best Actor at the Oscars . He alluded to practices of dairy farming, characterized them as an example of speciesism, and suggested that going vegan is the solution to both inhumane farming and speciesism. Let's take a closer look. In the U.S., inhumane farming happens: No question about it. As commentators and critics, including Phoenix, have documented, factory farm practices can be equivalent to torture . Hens spend their lives indoors, packed so tightly in cages that they cannot move, with their beaks cut and their feet growing into the bars of their cages; cows spend their lives indoors on concrete, packed into a barn, fed corn and soybeans, and shot up with growth hormone . These are just some of the animals that deserve our fierce and ardent protection. Yet if a majority of the country went vegan, while the demand for animal products would surely plummet, that drop would do nothing to guarantee the safety and well-being of animals who had been farmed or were still being farmed. Further, simply going vegan will do nothing to ensure that practices for farming fruits and vegetables… Read full this story
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