No matter how often singer Morrisey says so, ‘meat’ is not ‘murder’.
PETA have not thought this position through to its logical conclusion. Should the killing of a chicken by a human, for the dinner table, lead to a murder trial?
No doubt PETA would be happy, but how would they react to a cat that killed a mouse? The cat would have to be tried for the murder of the mouse, as the mouse would have a legal right to life analogous to that of a human being.
Despite PETA’s objection to zoos, we might yet find a use for them: imprisoning lions, cats, foxes, bats and other animals convicted of the ‘murder’ of gazelles, mice, voles and moths, etc. Most zoos would be too comfortable and ‘cell’ sizes would have to be reduced to accommodate the millions of animals who would fall foul of PETA’s world-view. How would we control pests if the killing of rats, locusts, scorpions and mosquitoes — even by other animals — were ‘murder’?
PETA’s argument that killing is ‘natural’ for animals is spurious. It is equally ‘natural’ for omnivorous human beings, who have always killed animals for food. PETA’s argument that killing by humans is different, because ‘we have a choice’, invalidates their view that animals should have ‘human rights’. Out one side of their mouth they argue animals ought to have legal and moral equivalence with humans, whilst, out the other, they say we are different. You can’t have it both ways, but, then, rationality does not seem to be a strong point with PETA.
Don’t get me wrong. I am fond of animals and the proud ‘steward’ of a happy cat. But I wouldn’t dream of reporting him to the police if he left a mouse on my doorstep. It is a sad indictment that the crazed, emotive views of organizations like PETA are even entertained.