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The Abolitionist approach to animal rights is speciesist

While the intentions of the abolitionist approach to animal rights are to be commended the profound problem with its reasoning is that it is what it professes to hate so much: speciesist.

A more informative name for this movement would in fact be:

The abolition of all domesticated animals (apart from humans) approach.

It fundamentally misunderstands the evolutionary history of animal relationships which, in our case, has been symbiotic rather than parasitic.  Both humans and our domesticated animal companions have profited from our relationships to a point which has led to the dramatic increase in our numbers as well as to change in our genomes.  Both human animals and our non-human animal companions have changed in accord to each other to some degree.  The domesticated wolf, dromedary, mouflon and human have evolved together in a symbiotic relationship and we all show well established genetic changes as a result of that domestication.

This is not to commit the naturalistic fallacy.  I do not claim that because our evolutionary relationship has been symbiotic that we can therefore proceed as we wish regarding our treatment of other animals.  It is merely a historical point to understand our relationships in a way shows that we do not hold some exalted position in which we chose them and they did not choose us. 

This realization that humans are also domesticated animals shows we cannot choose to abolish all non-human domesticated animals while allowing human domesticated animals to continue to breed as they choose without ourselves being speciesist.   Instead we need a criteria which can be applied fairly to all domesticated animals in order to judge which (if any) should be abolished.

Such a criterion should no doubt take into account the quality of life of the individual animals involved and attempt to give equal weight to all their interests rather than making the sweeping statement that we should abolish all non-human domesticated animals because they are not human.  Such a conclusion is, of course, the very embodiment of speciesism.


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