‘Intelligence tho’

I received some interesting feedback on my last article Would You Push the Button?

Ahh, Very clever. A good analogy to a point, but I don’t eat puppies. Cows are cute. I don’t eat much red meat. It is so bad for you. I’m just not feeling too sad for a chicken or a fish. They are pretty stupid. I do respect your choices for sure. Kudos for the discipline.’

How does this comment make you feel?

Personally, the comment made me feel really uncomfortable and after speaking with my non-vegan family and friends, it turned out that it’s wasn’t just my animal-loving bias that made me feel this way, it actually made a lot of other people feel uncomfortable too. One sentence in particular: 

I’m just not feeling too sad for a chicken or a fish. They are pretty stupid.

It may come as a surprise (more so for fish) but both animals are intelligent. Not as intelligent as a human, but neither is a dog and (surprise!) we don’t eat dogs (in the Western world, at least).

I’m pretty sure that the majority of the human species are a compassionate bunch. Let’s demonstrate this with an example: when you encounter someone that is considerably less intelligent than you, do you take advantage of them because you can? No, of course you don’t, because you’re not a psychopath. 

But it goes a little deeper than that…

If you justify the slaughter of animals and eating their flesh by saying that the animals are less intelligent than us (humans of average intelligence), you are also claiming that it is justified to eat a person with a severe mental disability making them less intelligent than that of a farm animal, for example. I’m guessing you don’t think that is ok and therefore you cannot use ‘lower intelligence’ as an ethical justification for eating animals.

Phew, glad we got that sorted! 

If you would like information regarding the intelligence of the animals mentioned above, then check out the links: fish and chicken. Also, always feel free to contact me if you have any questions about transitioning to a vegan diet or you’d simply like some support. 

I’d rather be a compassionate, empathetic person that looks after the less intelligent instead of taking advantage of them (and eating them). Let me know if you feel the same way 💚

 

 

 

 

 

50 thoughts on “‘Intelligence tho’

  1. Patricia G. says:

    You do raise some good points. I don’t care how stupid or intelligent a chicken or fish is, that should not be a justification for why one eats them. I only eat them because of social pressures, but when I am on my own, I will strongly consider becoming vegan, or at least vegetarian.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The Crumby Vegan says:

      Surprisingly, I know of a lot of people that really care about animals but because of social pressure and tradition they also eat animal products. So thank you for mentioning this point.

      I have a lot of experience dealing with this kind of stuff (dealing with social pressures) so if you do ever need some tips then don’t hesitate to get in touch. Otherwise I’m very happy to here that you’ll transition to a vegetarian or vegan diet when you get the opportunity 💚

      Like

  2. janna conner says:

    I’ve always thought it problematic why some people make the distinction that eating cow is fine but veal is not, eating chicken or fish is fine but foie gras is not. let’s face it, chickens, fish and cows are not treated that great either. if you eat one animal, I don’t see the real difference in eating any type of animal, it’s just socialization. that being said, it’s great if someone wants to be vegan bc everyone should be able to choose for themselves their own diet. It’s not for me though.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The Crumby Vegan says:

      Well Janna, at least you’re consistent, which is not what I can say about many people, haha! You are absolutely right though. People make a distinction between animals because society makes the distinction for them, even though there is very little difference. I appreciate your honesty and if you ever fancy chatting about all things vegan then get in touch 🙂 💚

      Like

    1. The Crumby Vegan says:

      Thank you for your comment Cheryl 🙂 It is interesting how people justify eating animals though, they can be incredibly inconsistent like the comment featured. I appreciate your understanding of my feelings 💚

      Like

  3. annemerrill says:

    I found this article every interesting, because while I’m not vegan myself (unfortunately, I’m one of those plagued with several allergies and intolerances that limit what I eat to even begin with), I do try to avoid products that I do not feel were ethically prepared or treated (again, which sometimes can be very slim).

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The Crumby Vegan says:

      I’m glad you found the article interesting Anne and you try to do the best you can. What kind of allergies do you have? I might be able to help if you want to learn about vegan food (however I understand you can’t do a full transition) 💚

      Like

  4. Cristine says:

    I think that people who eat meat should respect the animal. That means I’m wat the whole animal. Don’t throw away the parts, like offal, because you don’t want to eat them. It’s a disservice to the animals

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The Crumby Vegan says:

      Hi Christine 🙂 I’m not sure what this comment has to do with my post about intelligence BUT even though we normally disagree, I fully agree with your comment here. The world would be a very vegan place if humans had to eat the whole animal because we both know that most people are not like yourself when it comes to eating meat. Most people want their burger and that’s pretty much it – they don’t know anything about how the animal lived, how the animal was slaughtered or how their burger got there. They won’t eat even 10% of the animal. If more people were like yourself then factory farming wouldn’t exist. So even though I believe that we shouldn’t eat animals if we can eat plants instead, I am incredibly thankful to people like yourself who do not encourage animal suffering on a mass scale 💚

      Like

  5. Christie Moeller says:

    I think the main turn off in that comment is that it reeks of ignorance. Whether you eat meat, are a pescatarian, a vegetarian or vegan there are many factors that come into play in each individuals decisions. For the majority of people “feeling sad for” isn’t in the top 5 reasons they would give for their dietary choice. We each have our own degree as to where we take it and our own reasons.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The Crumby Vegan says:

      I think you hit the nail on the head, Christie: ignorance. It’s interesting to hear the justifications that people give for eating animals as normally they are super inconsistent and would apply to humans in most cases too, therefore there is just a bias line drawn between humans and animals (even though we are animals) 🙂 💚

      Like

      1. Christie Moeller says:

        I totally agree and your dietary choice doesn’t always come down to animal rights and certainly not intelligence. Sometimes it’s a dietary restriction, a health choice, religious or spiritual choice. Everyone’s reasons are different.

        Liked by 1 person

  6. Eric Gamble says:

    I agree that animals have a level of intelligence and that their lack of higher learning is no real reason to not care. But to play devil’s advocate, how do you feel about the fact that many species of fish, birds, mammals, etc use their intelligence to survive which then leads to them also being carnivorous?
    For example Dolphins are considered one of the smartest water based mammals and they are carnivorous. Thus does intelligence negate compassion?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The Crumby Vegan says:

      I always enjoy your comments Eric, thank you 🙂

      To answer your question, I don’t believe that intelligence negates compassion at all – actually I find the more emotionally intelligent you are (at the very least) the more compassionate you are. However survival absolutely negates compassion and that is why animals eat, to survive 💚

      Like

  7. traveloptician says:

    In my country where I’m form (Croatia) people also have the same opinion that chickens and fishes are stupid. There is also believe on a 31st of December that that day you can’t eat chicken or fish because during the whole new year you won’t be happy. Because the fish is swimming in the circle and the chicken is walking one step in front and two in back. But, it’s only how you take it and what do you believe, right?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The Crumby Vegan says:

      Thanks for your comment and telling us about the beliefs in Croatia. However, I have to disagree, it’s not a matter of opinion whether these animals are intelligent or not. It is scientifically proven that they are intelligent. Please check out the links made available in the post if you would like more information 💚

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Christina | From Under a Palm Tree says:

    I definitely agree with you here. I’ve even heard the argument that chickens are savage and that’s why it’s okay to eat them. Like WTF? Intelligence or behaviors are completely irrelevant. The fact is that if you’re eating meat you’re participating in a level of ignorance.

    Some of the other comments I’ve read on this post have stated that they eat meat due to social pressures and I can completely relate. The fact is that eating meat is so impeded in our western social structure that nonmeat eaters get a lot of hate. People just don’t like to see you go against the norm. But we have to make it more normal!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The Crumby Vegan says:

      Thank you Christina! I’ve been learning about ethical arguments recently and it had me thinking that there is genuinely no ethical reasoning behind eating meat because you couldn’t apply the same standard to humans that share the particular ‘characteristic’ with the animals. So interesting but it makes me want to fight harder for the animals, haha!

      Meat is so ingrained into our society so it must be super hard for people that don’t want to break out of the norm as you say. But you’re right though, veganism in the UK, for example, rose from 1% of the population to 7% in the last year! The animals will be saved eventually 🙂 💚

      Like

    1. The Crumby Vegan says:

      You’re right Emily, although I haven’t found a single ethical argument for eating meat (unless someone is starving or has a gun to their head, for example). However, I am open to suggestions as I imagine I haven’t covered all instances yet 💚

      Like

  9. Steph says:

    You have a point there. Animals have their own intelligence otherwise how would they survive the habitat they live in.. I am consciously making an effort to be more educated with regards to being vegan

    Liked by 1 person

  10. sassi479 says:

    Definitely ignorance with that comment and perhaps not being respectful to other people’s beliefs. I’m not vegan but never judge other people’s choices, nor would I comment anything against what others feel passionate about. To each their own. I’m sorry you received a comment like that.
    Christine Weis

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The Crumby Vegan says:

      That’s a very sweet comment for you to post Christine, thank you. My issue is more with how she feels about animals and how she justifies her reasoning for eating meat. Mentioning how cute they are, stupid etc. is so ignorant as you said 💚

      Liked by 1 person

  11. lucicoo says:

    I have read that fish and chickens do have intelligence like they could be taught or they remember a certain sound for feedings. I’m not a vegan but I do wonder if the animals that we do eat have feelings or thoughts when it happens.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The Crumby Vegan says:

      This is a great comment! Animals absolutely know what’s going on – it’s one of the reasons I try to fight so hard for them. People that argue that animals are not intelligent (not you) clearly haven’t thought about which way the animals try to run in a slaughter house… They run the same way that we would 💚

      Like

  12. Nicole Boether says:

    The older I’ve gotten, the more I’ve considered a vegan lifestyle because of reasons like this. It just makes you think about the choices you make. Thanks for sharing this.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. OlordePrimavera says:

    I am a vegan and proud. It is sad that Human care for other Human but when it gets to animals they think they were not God´s creature. They do fell feel pain and we live in world that uses this creatures to create toxic things. But I see that more and more people are going the vegan and vegetarian way. so never stop talking about it. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The Crumby Vegan says:

      Yahhhh for another vegan 💚

      You’re right, there is such a separation for humans when they compare themselves to animals, however animals have no attribute that we can’t assign to a human that would justify eating animals 💚

      Like

  14. ajournalofstories says:

    You raise some excellent points. I eat chicken, but not because the animal is stupid. I’ve tried to adopt a vegetarian diet and it was difficult to adapt to because I had a very unbalanced diet. I’ve always wanted to it again, but I just need to learn how to adopt a better diet this time around. Thanks for this compassionate post, it really is insensitive to say that an animal is stupid and therefore is reason enough to be eaten. Thank you for being so kind about this.

    Like

    1. The Crumby Vegan says:

      This is a wonderful comment, thank you!

      Sorry to hear that you had a hard time going vegetarian, I would be more than happy to help. Feel free to contact me via the contact page or you could even just message on here. What did you find hard in particular and what was your diet mainly made up of? I think it’s lovely that you want to help animals 💚

      Like

  15. Natalia says:

    I love reading your posts, although I’m not a vegan and I don’t really perceive certain issues just like you … but it’s interesting how more animal loving people feel about our non-vegan way of thinking. I’ve never felt sorry for animals I’ve eaten in my life, but I understand that some people may feel bad about that. I’ve got a question … how about plants … you need to ‘kill’ them in a way to eat something … there wil alwaysl be some casualties. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The Crumby Vegan says:

      It’s a great question, thank you for asking it Natalia. Fortunately for me, being vegan long enough means I know the answers to these questions 🙂

      First thing is that a plant isn’t sentient but not only that, vegans actually cause the death of less plants when compared to non-vegans. This is because farm animals eat far more plants than we could ever eat, and therefore to fatten up the animals, they eat A LOT of plants. Hence veganism is best if you care about animals or plants (or the environment, your health or the starving people on the planet). I hope that makes sense – I wrote it better in a post: https://thecrumbyvegan.com/2017/06/19/but-plants-have-feelings-though/

      Thanks so much for commenting 💚

      Like

    1. The Crumby Vegan says:

      Thank you for your comment Indrani. I felt the comment was a perfect way to address how some people take advantage of animals with lower intelligence but they wouldn’t do the same to humans. I really appreciate you taking the time to read my article 💚

      Like

  16. Kate says:

    That comment definitely makes me sad. I’m a meat eater who is deeply conflicted over it, especially as I have two pit bulls in my home. Watching how humans treat these animals is deeply saddening to me and has caused me to re-evaluate my meat-eating status. I really hope someday I can stop pushing the button.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The Crumby Vegan says:

      Ah Kate, I’m so sorry you feel that way. I’ve myself felt like that and I know a lot of my friends and family have gone through that stage which can be incredibly uncomfortable. It just shows how compassionate you are to make the connection between farm animals and pets. If you ever want to chat about how you’re feeling then don’t hesitate to get in touch 💚

      Like

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