Has Eating Meat Become an Ethical Problem?

Photo Credit // Ourfiniteworld.com

Photo Credit // Ourfiniteworld.com

Louisa Snell, Opinion Editor

Recently, I’ve learned that four or five of my friends are vegetarian, whether that began in the past year or has been going on forever. Eating meat, some of them will say, is an ethical problem. The meat that is in your cheeseburger may be coming from animals under horrible conditions, where cows and chickens are slaughtered and met with painful deaths. In this article, I’ll be delving into the vegan/vegetarian controversy and providing an argument for their statements. Eating meat has become a moral issue, and it’s because of the treatment of animals.

I am a true, die-hard animal lover. For a huge portion of elementary school, I was completely obsessed with teacup pigs, hogs, and even boars. I turned my back on any pig product and stayed that way until probably fifth grade, when my sister convinced me to eat a piece of bacon. I went pig-free for a while, and it was easier than I thought. 

However, the true reason you should go vegetarian is not because of an animal obsession. It’s about morality, and how these animals are kept. Free From Harm, a farm animal advocacy and education organization, writes about animals’ conditions honestly in “Why Vegan? The Top Reasons.” In the article, they write, “In nature, wild hens lay only 12 to 20 eggs per year. But domesticated chickens have been genetically manipulated to produce between 250 and 300 eggs annually, leading to painful and often fatal reproductive disorders.”

Animals are harmed and killed even when they aren’t bred for meat. It’s reported that roughly six billion male chickens are killed each year, primarily by suffocation to be ground into meat. This disgusting routine should not be supported. In the past few years, more secrets about the meat industry have been uncovered, exposing the horrible conditions and production of the meat we buy at restaurants and supermarkets alike. 

All in all, eating vegan or vegetarian should not be frowned upon or laughed at. It should be supported and encouraged, because as these unconscious eating habits are called out, the huge ethical problem of eating industry meat is diminished ever so slightly, bit by bit, person by person.