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  • Writer's pictureCrone

Do I have a line?

One I won't cross? One I stand for?

I'm not sure.

I think about the animals and I do believe, with the abolitionists, that animals have the right not to be exploited. Sorta. I mean, what is exploitation anyway? Francione says they should not be treated as property. A thing is property, not a being. They should not be under the dominion of an owner who can do what she wills with them (or ignore them to play with her iPhone cats or write her posts about cats and their rights). I get that. So, no pets, says Francione. But... but... but... what if I had to rely on humans to be my companions? Would an animal choose to live with me? I guess Daisy did. I gave her back to her owner. Treated her like property.

I don't think other animals are in any way lesser than humans. well, they're less good at conversation and mathematics, but I mean 'morally speaking'. Just as you shouldn't kill a human, force her to procreate, ban her from procreating, harm her and so on and so forth. And yet they are lesser - in the same way that I am lesser than a tech giant or a senior politician. They assert power over me and my life whether I like it or not. Of course, I can opt out of the Internet or consuming... but can I really? And I can't opt out of society either, not if I want to live and eat and buy cats. It's not the same, of course it's not the same, but raw power just does confer privilege, choices, freedoms that the rest of us in some ways lack. I'm just not as important as them. They get the nuclear bunker.

I am not sure if being a cow on a proper farm is the worst thing for a cow. I'm not sure being an Amazon warehouse worker is the best thing for a person... and how much freedom do they have to turn down that job?

I am sure that being in a lab is pretty shit for a rat. But I'm not sure that being a beloved pet rat, with a lot of freedom and enrichment and company, isn't pretty ok for a rat.

I think that life for animals in the wild is a mix of good and bad; so is domestication. But how do we let them gauge the balance? Can they?

They want, I know that... to play, to go through that door, to eat, to lie on me, to be close, to be together. What about to be free? What, after all, is free? Free to live or die? Free to choose between two options, a hundred options, a million options? Free from the need to eat? The need to sleep? Can any of us, man or mouse, be free?

It's what the transhumanists want - freedom from pain, death, limitations. And then what? Is that really good?

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