Notes From Babel

The unintended consequences of banning horse slaughter

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Not exactly a topical piece on this Christmas Eve, but Noodle Food has an interesting post about the unintended consequences of the ban on horse slaughter in the U.S., which results in shifting that practice to Canada and Mexico and thus the additional suffering of horses that have to make that trek.  I find the argument interesting, yet somehow I still don’t see anything wrong with condemning and prohibiting the slaughter, and particularly the consumption, of animals like horses.  This is probably because the reason for such prohibition  is that we observe a sort of kinship with horses and thus, we outlaw it for basically the same reason we outlaw cannibalism. Thus, I’d reject Hsieh’s basic argument for the same reason I’d reject arguments attacking laws prohibiting suicide and euthanasia: suffering is terrible, but there’s something fundamentally wrong with abetting, even profiting from, death.


Written by Tim Kowal

December 24, 2010 at 10:53 am

Posted in Morality

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