I’ve been reading a lot about ethics and utilitarianism lately, particularly Practical Ethics┬áby Peter Singer. His logic and presentation of Preference Utilitarianism, particularly as it pertains to the person-hood of creatures, is compelling. Because of this, I have decided to change my own behavior and stop eating most meat excepting fish which I’ll address in a moment. Here are my main thoughts on the matter:

  • The small pleasure that I receive from eating meat requires the real pain of other sentient creatures.
  • I don’t want to support the factory farming that supports the vast majority of meat production in this country.
  • I’ve excepted fish and other seafood because I don’t think it meets the criteria of sentience and person-hood of the other most common forms of meat.
  • This isn’t the final answer. As I think more about the ethical ramifications of my life, I may revise this in other directions.

I’ll be happy to answer any questions in the comments.

6 thoughts on “Pescetarianism

  1. I like your thinking, Jason. But I would urge you to also consider the health aspects, such as the environment and polution in the fish habitat and the problems with bacteria in the food processing plants. I’ve been a vegetarian since I was about three, but have recently moved very close to being a total vegan. I am avoiding milk products for health reasons (IBS). A few months ago I read about the laws which limit the amount of blood and pus which milk can contain. That is not pleasant to think about and kind of ruins the idea of ice cream!

  2. Health and environmental aspects are also some things I am thinking about. The Monterey Bay Aquarium has a Seafood watch program that details sustainable and healthy choices for fish, which I believe can be part of a healthy diet. Many people continue moving down to veganism once they start down this path, so that’s not an inconceivable endpoint.

    My understanding is most processed foods have bug parts in them, it’s not fun to think about!

  3. Not to mention the obvious, that Jesus would not have included fish in His diet if it were morally or ethically objectionable or caused any amount of suffering for sentient creatures.

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