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Switch to Forum Live View Cognitive Confusion
7 years ago  ::  Nov 06, 2007 - 2:20PM #1
solfeggio
Posts: 8,951
'Pet the dog; eat the cow.'

Why were people so outraged at revelations of Michael Vick's dogfighting activities?   Well, we all know it was because dogs were being tortured and killed to appease a public's need for entertainment.  And, it wasn't just any animal that was being tortured and killed, it was man's best friend, a sentient, consciously aware being.  And that was morally inexcusable.

But, why is it that those same people who wouldn't dream of harming a dog think nothing of letting another sentient, consciously aware being like a cow (or a pig, lamb, chicken, or calf) be tortured and slaughtered?  Why do people who will take a pot-bellied pig into their home and accept him as one of the family, loved and cherished, but think nothing of buying a pork roast and eating it?

Isn't it readily apparent that the factory pig has the same needs, desires, and dispositional interests as the family pet?  How can anyone deny that the factory pig wants just as much to live a satisfactory life as his pot-bellied cousin? 

This gap between our values and our motives is a sort of cognitive confusion.  We refuse to acknowledge the reality of the life and miserable death of the factory pig (or cow), because the gap between our values and motives is too big to bridge.  In other words, our hedonistic egoism takes precedence over whatever moral values we think we possess.  The taste of the pork roast is more important to us than the suffering of the pig.

This is utilitarianism.  We feel an action is moral as long as it tends to promote general social utility, and most people do feel that they need to eat meat in order to live happy and healthy lives.  How that meat is obtained does not interest people.  As long as it is done behind closed doors by somebody else, they are satisfied.

This is the maxim that governs the actions of the vast majority of people. 

Morally confused thinking?  Of course.  But we should never forget that the fact that we act in confused ways is not justification for acting in a confused way.
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7 years ago  ::  Nov 06, 2007 - 2:57PM #2
AngryWomble
Posts: 44
I've not tried dog yet cos it's not something you'd get over here, however if i'm abroad and find a decent and clean eating establishment that has it on the menu then i'd give it a whorl if the dish looked appetising.  I don't think that cognitive confusion comes into it, some people will just not eat a meat that their culture would traditionally not associate with as food.

I'm not morally confused.....i'm just limited by what the supermarkets have in stock......
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7 years ago  ::  Nov 06, 2007 - 3:07PM #3
bluehorserunning
Posts: 1,754
I suspect that the public would have a similar reaction to the Vic case if it was discovered that some football star was running an underground bullfighting or cockfighting racket.
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7 years ago  ::  Nov 06, 2007 - 3:10PM #4
DesertKat
Posts: 436
Again, how do you balance being compasionate towards those you are related to, yet clearly state that those who are not should just starve.

My point is, those you are acusing are not the only ones holding standards- yes, there is a cultural norm that states dogs are not food.  But that does not mean that people are confused.  Or were you morally confused when you declaired that other people's children should just starve to death?
Criticism may not be agreeable, but it is necessary. It fulfils the same function as pain in the human body. It calls attention to an unhealthy state of things.
Winston Churchill
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7 years ago  ::  Nov 06, 2007 - 6:48PM #5
solfeggio
Posts: 8,951
I haven't a clue what you're talking about but, judging from your post and the others, you have all completely missed the point of what I'm talking about.

I thought I made myself clear enough in the initial post, but evidently cognitive confusion and disconnect is so deeply embedded in all of your consciousness that it would take a major effort to get past it.

And, I confess that I just don't have the energy or the motivation to do that.
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7 years ago  ::  Nov 06, 2007 - 6:55PM #6
DesertKat
Posts: 436
[QUOTE=solfeggio;49584]I haven't a clue what you're talking about but, judging from your post and the others, you have all completely missed the point of what I'm talking about.

I thought I made myself clear enough in the initial post, but evidently cognitive confusion and disconnect is so deeply embedded in all of your consciousness that it would take a major effort to get past it.

And, I confess that I just don't have the energy or the motivation to do that.[/QUOTE]

Or you just know you are wrong.

I was pretty clear, even trying to present yourself as being blameless and pointing fingers at others for "moral confusion" paints yourself hypocritcally.  You are just as morally confused as any one here, if not more so.  At least I can recognize the harm I do and try to counter it, you can't even recognize it.  You continue to point fingers and hold yourself as somehow more evolved while completely ignoring the fact that you have absolutely NO compassion for your fellow human animals.  You have advocating the cruel starvation of innocent people, you have agreed when others said that people with fatal without treatment diseases should just die and you have lobed lies and called people names here.

Those are not the actions of the spiritually evolved.  I may not have met anyone who fits that definition, but I still know when I met people who don't.
Criticism may not be agreeable, but it is necessary. It fulfils the same function as pain in the human body. It calls attention to an unhealthy state of things.
Winston Churchill
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7 years ago  ::  Nov 06, 2007 - 7:01PM #7
SkyWalker53
Posts: 2,235
Can you believe your last thread was deleted Solf? I'm glad you re-opened it with different words. The fact remains these people have been conditioned to be cognitively confused. Only the sharpest minds are capable of breaking free of societal conditioning; however, i should say that any conditioning that allows one to turn a blind eye and participate in abject cruelty to others doesn't say much for their cognitive skills does it?

Maybe they are afraid of not doing what everyone else does, maybe they are addicted to the taste of saturated fat...but for sure they are conditioned to think that it is okay to kill a cow but not a dog. If more of them would question things, more of them would begin to doubt this cognitive schism. It's not morally consistent, it's not rational, it makes no sense.

I'm sure if they were conditioned to eat babies legs at drive-thru's, they would. As long as they are not the one on the dinner menu, all is fine with the world.

If they don't want to be killed, they have to be able to understand that both a dog and a cow do not either and apply that reasoning to personal actions; taking responsibility for our ability to perceive another's desire to not be harmed or have their throat sliced open.
If it is not okay to kill us, it is not okay to kill a dog, it is not okay to kill a cow.
If it is okay to kill a cow, then ALL killing become justifiable, including wars, capital punishment, humans, children, dogs, cats and so on.

Be reasonable, be consistent. Don't be a dick.....cheney.
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7 years ago  ::  Nov 06, 2007 - 7:09PM #8
solfeggio
Posts: 8,951
Oh, Sky, I am soooo very glad that you are on the side of the angels!  It is such a pleasure to see the voice of reason trying to be heard amongst all the clanging nonsense that clutters these threads most of the time.

And yeah, I was furious when they removed my thread.  Does make you wonder whose side the people who run things here are on, though. 

If you want to read more about moral sch********, and similar topics, Google the Gary Francione website.  He's got lots of good essays on this very topic.  That's where I got the idea in the first place.

And yes, I would have thought that it would have been plain even to the ding dongs that a cow doesn't want to have her thoat slit anymore than the family dog does!

Evidently not, though.
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7 years ago  ::  Nov 06, 2007 - 7:19PM #9
SkyWalker53
Posts: 2,235
[QUOTE=DesertKat;49608]Or you just know you are wrong.

I was pretty clear, even trying to present yourself as being blameless and pointing fingers at others for "moral confusion" paints yourself hypocritcally.  You are just as morally confused as any one here, if not more so.  At least I can recognize the harm I do and try to counter it, you can't even recognize it.  You continue to point fingers and hold yourself as somehow more evolved while completely ignoring the fact that you have absolutely NO compassion for your fellow human animals.  You have advocating the cruel starvation of innocent people, you have agreed when others said that people with fatal without treatment diseases should just die and you have lobed lies and called people names here.

Those are not the actions of the spiritually evolved.  I may not have met anyone who fits that definition, but I still know when I met people who don't.[/QUOTE]

Dearest DK, Solf spends her free time helping out people in shelters and other humanitarian activities as well as animals. She does more volunteer work for humans in one weekend than you'll do in your entire lifetime. Not to mention that eating a vegan diet helps humans, animals, and the planet.  Next time you munch on the muscles of a tormented slaughtered animal, think about that migrant worker working in the worst most human abusive industry there is, a slaughterhouse. A struggling migrant worker who was kicked in the face breaking his jaw by a cow hanging upside down as she is chainsawed into pieces while still conscious as hoisted down the assembly line. That assembly line has to keep moving for DK to get her "spiritual and humanitarian" Big Mac, clog her arteries and such, so that conscious cows can be dismembered in agonizing pain and terror by migrant workers.

Lastly, stick to the topic. This discussion is not about Solf. As much as we could all brag about how much we do to help animals and human animals, we have no need to since the debates are not about individuals. The goal here is to get the selfish humans to stop causing horrific animal cruelty by buying products that cause them to be tormented. We certainly don't expect any of you to help animals, which requires selflessness. Not harming animals should be doable even for a selfish person.
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7 years ago  ::  Nov 06, 2007 - 7:21PM #10
LittleBuddha73
Posts: 1,399
[QUOTE=solfeggio;48936]'Pet the dog; eat the cow.'

Why were people so outraged at revelations of Michael Vick's dogfighting activities?   Well, we all know it was because dogs were being tortured and killed to appease a public's need for entertainment.  And, it wasn't just any animal that was being tortured and killed, it was man's best friend, a sentient, consciously aware being.  And that was morally inexcusable.

But, why is it that those same people who wouldn't dream of harming a dog think nothing of letting another sentient, consciously aware being like a cow (or a pig, lamb, chicken, or calf) be tortured and slaughtered?  Why do people who will take a pot-bellied pig into their home and accept him as one of the family, loved and cherished, but think nothing of buying a pork roast and eating it?

Isn't it readily apparent that the factory pig has the same needs, desires, and dispositional interests as the family pet?  How can anyone deny that the factory pig wants just as much to live a satisfactory life as his pot-bellied cousin? 

This gap between our values and our motives is a sort of cognitive confusion.  We refuse to acknowledge the reality of the life and miserable death of the factory pig (or cow), because the gap between our values and motives is too big to bridge.  In other words, our hedonistic egoism takes precedence over whatever moral values we think we possess.  The taste of the pork roast is more important to us than the suffering of the pig.

This is utilitarianism.  We feel an action is moral as long as it tends to promote general social utility, and most people do feel that they need to eat meat in order to live happy and healthy lives.  How that meat is obtained does not interest people.  As long as it is done behind closed doors by somebody else, they are satisfied.

This is the maxim that governs the actions of the vast majority of people. 

Morally confused thinking?  Of course.  But we should never forget that the fact that we act in confused ways is not justification for acting in a confused way.[/QUOTE]

Well stated, and I think you are absolutely right.
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