Animal Liberation : 'n kritiese bespreking vanuit 'n filosofies-veekundige perspektief

Kluyts, Johan Francois (2012-12)

Thesis (MPhil)--Stellenbosch University, 2012.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: 1. The purpose of the first chapter was to give a short introduction to the study. Philosophy is the search for wisdom; to know what a virtuous life is and to know what the morally correct thing to do is. Our lifelong relationship with animals, our attitudes towards them and the ways we treat them are some of the issues that beg philosophers to think. An important question in this regard is if it is morally correct to eat meat or should humans become vegetarian. To answer this question the „Animal Liberation‟ argument, as presented by Peter Singer, was critically analyzed. Does this argument balance our concern for animals with human interests? 2. To understand our attitude towards animals, reviews of the Judeo-Christian and philosophical traditions were done in Chapter 2. The different views related to these traditions were also discussed. The Judeo-Christian view is based on the interpretation of Genesis and the idea of human dominion. Philosophical views on the moral status of animals and moral consideration of animals can be classified in three categories namely indirect theories, direct-but-unequal theories and equal moral status theories. 3. The nature and extent of the current beef production debate was discussed in Chapter 3. The most important issues were the environmental impact of beef production, socio-economic and human health concerns as well as ethical issues related to the inhumane treatment of animals. It was then concluded that most attacks on beef production were biased and did not take context into account. 4. The „Animal Liberation‟ argument was critically analyzed from a logical perspective in Chapter 4, 5 and 6 by using the so called FRISCO approach – with emphasis on the Focus of the argument, Reasons given for the conclusion, the quality of Inferences, the Situation or context of the argument as well as the Clarity of the argument. This argument lacks objectivity and rationality. It includes a number of fallacies, false statements and emotional language. Ideas, concepts and principles were not applied consistently. The argument was therefore found to be unsound. 5. In Chapter 7 the conclusion was stated namely that the “animal liberation” approach could not formulate a sound argument for a vegetarian diet. The „Animal Liberation‟ argument was also unable to balance our concern for animals with human interests, in the process compromising human dignity and freedom. However, human attitudes towards animals and the treatment of animals need to be improved.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: 1. Die doel van die eerste hoofstuk was om ʼn kort inleiding tot die studie te gee. Filosofie is die strewe en soeke na wysheid; om te weet wat ʼn deugsame lewe is, en om te weet wat moreel korrek en aanvaarbaar is. Ons verhouding met diere, ons ingesteldheid teenoor diere, asook die manier hoe ons diere behandel, is slegs enkele van die kwessies wat filosowe dwing om daaroor na te dink. ʼn Belangrike vraag in die verband is die volgende: Is dit moreel aanvaarbaar om vleis te eet, of moet die mens ʼn vegetariese dieet volg? Om hierdie vraag te beantwoord word die “Animal Liberation”-argument, soos aangebied deur Peter Singer, krities ontleed. Is hierdie argument in staat om ons kommer oor die behandeling van diere met menslike belange te balanseer? 2. Om die mens se houding en ingesteldheid teenoor diere beter te verstaan, word ʼn oorsig van die Joods-Christelike en filosofiese tradisies in Hoofstuk 2 gedoen. Die verskillende sienings, wat verband hou met hierdie tradisies, word ook kortliks bespreek. Die Joods-Christelike siening is gebaseer op ʼn spesifieke vertolking van Genesis en die idee van menslike heerskappy. Die filosofiese sienings van die morele status, en gevolglik ook die morele inagneming van diere, kan in drie kategorieë, naamlik indirekte teorieë, direk-maar-ongelyke teorieë en die gelyke-morele-status teorieë, opgedeel word. 3. Die aard en omvang van die beesvleisproduksie-debat word in Hoofstuk 3 bespreek. Die belangrikste kwessies, onderliggend aan hierdie debat, het betrekking op die omgewingsimpak van vleisproduksie, sosio-ekonomiese en menslike gesondheidskwessies, asook etiese kwessies wat verband hou met die onaanvaarbare behandeling van diere. Die gevolgtrekking is dat die meeste aanvalle op vleisproduksie eensydig is en ook nie konteks in ag neem nie. 4. Die “Animal Liberation”-argument word in Hoofstuk 4, 5 en 6 krities ontleed vanuit „n logiese perspektief met behulp van die sogenaamde FRISCO-metode – waarin die klem val op die Fokus van die argument, Redes wat aangevoer word vir die konklusie, die gehalte van die afleidings, die Situasie of konteks van die argument, en die helderheid van die argument. Die gevolgtrekking is dat die argument nie objektief en rasioneel is nie, en gebuk gaan onder denkfoute, vals stellings en emosionele taal. Idees, konsepte en beginsel word ook nie konsekwent toegepas nie. Die argument is dus nie betroubaar nie. 5. In Hoofstuk 7 word die bevinding van die tesis gestel, naamlik dat die “animal liberation” benadering nie „n betroubare argument vir ʼn vegetariese dieet kon formuleer nie. Die argument was ook nie in staat om ons kommer oor diere met menslike belange te balanseer nie, en het in die proses menslike waardigheid en vryheid gekompromitteer. Die mens se houding en behandeling van diere, moet egter verander.

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