Why are cute animals given a special treatment?

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Realitycrash:
So we eat pills as substitute for whatever we might lack, which should be easy to support production of, due to the massive requirements needed to create even 1 pound of pork.

And do you know what warning is featured on the casing of those pills? "A supplement is not a replacement of a healthy lifestyle" Not to mention those pills are also largely made from concentrated animal products.

Realitycrash:
Now, you claim different, and that's fine, but can you source me this? Because I'd very much like to read any material that claims this.

I'm hardly a dietician and neither do I think I have to complete a reversed burden of evidence to bust vegetarian mythology, but stuff like plant-based iron being far less effective are documented everywhere. Google produces instant results:

"Vegetarians need almost twice the daily recommended amount of iron compared with non-vegetarians. Iron from plant-based foods is not absorbed as well by our bodies as animal food sources."
http://www.dietitians.ca/Nutrition-Resources-A-Z/Factsheets/Minerals/Food-Sources-of-Iron.aspx

If you look at the chart, you'd also see that to get that much, assuming you're either a woman or in good shape (so let's assume that 27 x 2 for simplicity) and you want to get that from soy in the form of yoghurt, you'd have to eat 4,7 litres of it every single day. That's about five packs of 1 litre like they sell them in the super market, every single day. Imagine if you're both a woman and would like to be in good shape...

For someone like me, probably even more. I try to keep around 3200 kcal a day to keep my weight and that's quite a lot above the average of 2500, 28% more, so for me that would be 6 packs of yoghurt each day. Which would cost a ridiculous amount of money and not be very nice to have to eat.

So you see, not only are cows and pigs quite content to be in stables and eat food, and do they eat things that we humans can't consume, effectively turning non-food into food products for us, but it's also essential to your health.

Blablahb:

Realitycrash:
So we eat pills as substitute for whatever we might lack, which should be easy to support production of, due to the massive requirements needed to create even 1 pound of pork.

And do you know what warning is featured on the casing of those pills? "A supplement is not a replacement of a healthy lifestyle" Not to mention those pills are also largely made from concentrated animal products.

Realitycrash:
Now, you claim different, and that's fine, but can you source me this? Because I'd very much like to read any material that claims this.

I'm hardly a dietician and neither do I think I have to complete a reversed burden of evidence to bust vegetarian mythology, but stuff like plant-based iron being far less effective are documented everywhere. Google produces instant results:

"Vegetarians need almost twice the daily recommended amount of iron compared with non-vegetarians. Iron from plant-based foods is not absorbed as well by our bodies as animal food sources."
http://www.dietitians.ca/Nutrition-Resources-A-Z/Factsheets/Minerals/Food-Sources-of-Iron.aspx

If you look at the chart, you'd also see that to get that much, assuming you're either a woman or in good shape (so let's assume that 27 x 2 for simplicity) and you want to get that from soy in the form of yoghurt, you'd have to eat 4,7 litres of it every single day. That's about five packs of 1 litre like they sell them in the super market, every single day. Imagine if you're both a woman and would like to be in good shape...

For someone like me, probably even more. I try to keep around 3200 kcal a day to keep my weight and that's quite a lot above the average of 2500, 28% more, so for me that would be 6 packs of yoghurt each day. Which would cost a ridiculous amount of money and not be very nice to have to eat.

So you see, not only are cows and pigs quite content to be in stables and eat food, and do they eat things that we humans can't consume, effectively turning non-food into food products for us, but it's also essential to your health.

We don't have to grow SOY on those fields, you know. We could grow all the different things humans actually need (wheat, corn, beans, rice, etc, etc, etc).

It took me one google to hit on this: http://www.t-nation.com/free_online_article/sports_body_training_performance_nutrition/can_vegetarians_build_muscle
Professional body-builder that tried a vegetarian diet (and managed to build muscles, from what I can tell. I know, unreliable source, but it was just the very first hit out of many)
However, yes, he did consume iron-additives, but can't those be synthesized from pigs-blood? Or cow-blood? Or what do you need, especially? Afterall, we don't need to kill animals, or even harm them, to harvest their blood.

Edit: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vegetarian_diet#Iron Wikipedia, I know, but it is well-sourced. Some studies have claimed low iron-count, but

However, the American Dietetic Association states that iron deficiency is no more common in vegetarians than non-vegetarians (adult males are rarely iron deficient); iron deficiency anaemia is rare no matter the diet

So it is enough for a healthy diet. In fact, that entire article says that a vegetarian diet is sufficient to live healthy. It might be hard to body-build, but not to live and gain sufficient muscle for a healthy life.

Edit 2:

Well-planned vegetarian and vegan diets are nutritionally adequate and are appropriate for all stages of the life cycle, including during pregnancy, lactation, infancy, childhood, and adolescence.[1] A vegetarian diet can provide adequate protein, iron, zinc, vitamin B12, and calcium intake, though these nutrients can be relatively low in poorly planned vegetarian diets, particularly when not enough calories are consumed.[1]

- "Position of the American Dietetic Association and Dietitians of Canada: Vegetarian diets". Journal of the American Dietetic Association, 2003, 06. Retrieved 13 April 2012.

Edit 3: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vegetarian_Diet_Pyramid

Loma Linda University School of Public Health, Department of Nutrition developed The Vegetarian Food Pyramid[2] in 1997 for presentation at the 3rd International Congress on Vegetarian Nutrition.[3] The 5 major plant-based food groups (whole grains, legumes, vegetables, fruits, nuts and seeds) form the trapezoid-shaped lower portion of the pyramid. Optional food groups (vegetable oils, dairy and sweets) form the triangle-shaped top portion of the pyramid. This version of the pyramid includes a table with recommended number of daily servings per daily calorie intake.

According to the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, healthful diets contain the amounts of essential nutrients and energy needed to prevent nutritional deficiencies and excesses. Healthful diets also provide the right balance of carbohydrates, fat, and protein to reduce risks for chronic diseases, and they are obtained from a variety of foods that are available, affordable, and enjoyable.

The healthfulness of this pattern has been corroborated by epidemiological and experimental nutrition.

I'm sorry, but I'm not finding your argument that humans can't live healthy on a vegetarian diet very convincing in the light of this information, and the fact how who sourced and approved it.

Realitycrash:
So it is enough for a healthy diet. In fact, that entire article says that a vegetarian diet is sufficient to live healthy. It might be hard to body-build, but not to live and gain sufficient muscle for a healthy life.

Edit 2:

Well-planned vegetarian and vegan diets are nutritionally adequate and are appropriate for all stages of the life cycle, including during pregnancy, lactation, infancy, childhood, and adolescence.[1] A vegetarian diet can provide adequate protein, iron, zinc, vitamin B12, and calcium intake, though these nutrients can be relatively low in poorly planned vegetarian diets, particularly when not enough calories are consumed.[1]

- "Position of the American Dietetic Association and Dietitians of Canada: Vegetarian diets". Journal of the American Dietetic Association, 2003, 06. Retrieved 13 April 2012.

I don't think an advertisement for steroids on some vague website, and a wiki entry that is sourced on vegan mythology can beat blunt simple biological facts, you know.

And you quoted it yourself: well-planned. Most people don't have the time or money to purchase and prepare large amounts of meat replacers and and meticulously register what they eat every day and if they're still healthy. Let's face it, you need a balanced diet as a human being. You can't take out an entire essential food group and expect it to work. It's unrealistic. One can't use an unhealthy lifestyle maintained by a tiny minority of rich people with a lot of time to spare, with something that'll work for everyone. It has to be realistic, "It's possible" is not sufficient as an argument.

Because it's also possible to drive safely without a drivers license when roaring drunk. Really, just like being a healthy vegan it is possible in theory. But that doesn't form an argument to claim drivers licenses are unnecessary and drunk driving is good.


And with that my shift is up for today in a few more minutes. Need to make my round, close down the fort, lock the gates and head home to eat, and sleep, especially the sleep part. Need to be up again for a 'broken shift' five hours later, for which I still have to strangle our planner. You'll understand I don't have the energy to carefully plan an expensive vegetarian meal, and spend hours and hours in the middle of the bloody night preparing and eating it and annoying my neighbours with the noise. Makes quite a difference if you don't sleep at all or sleep four hours. There's supposedly some mash of curly cale and potatoes left, and on top of that goes a sausage which you can microwave in 30 seconds, and which according to wikipedia, you poor foreigners don't have. 0.o

Blablahb:

Realitycrash:
So it is enough for a healthy diet. In fact, that entire article says that a vegetarian diet is sufficient to live healthy. It might be hard to body-build, but not to live and gain sufficient muscle for a healthy life.

Edit 2:

Well-planned vegetarian and vegan diets are nutritionally adequate and are appropriate for all stages of the life cycle, including during pregnancy, lactation, infancy, childhood, and adolescence.[1] A vegetarian diet can provide adequate protein, iron, zinc, vitamin B12, and calcium intake, though these nutrients can be relatively low in poorly planned vegetarian diets, particularly when not enough calories are consumed.[1]

- "Position of the American Dietetic Association and Dietitians of Canada: Vegetarian diets". Journal of the American Dietetic Association, 2003, 06. Retrieved 13 April 2012.

I don't think an advertisement for steroids on some vague website, and a wiki entry that is sourced on vegan mythology can beat blunt simple biological facts, you know.

Oh come on, you calling American Dietetic Association to be based on 'vegan mythology'? And you can't just say 'beats biological facts' without sourcing said facts yourself. Provide some sources for your claims, man.
Now, yeah, a planned diet, but that doesn't necessarily need to be that hard. Yeah, it takes time to prepare a decent meal (though not that long), but hell, that argument is used today as well, and people still aren't eating healthy. Their tv-dinner has meat, but it isn't healthy. Ultimately, we are going to have to put some effort into staying healthy.
Also, the article never mentions meat-replacers. You don't need soy-burgers or quorn or the like. Beans, soy, rice, vegetables, milk, cottage-cheese, eggs, etc. You don't have to meticulously register what you eat every day, you just need to eat a little bit of everything (Like, for instance, I do, except I add meat because I like the taste), or just vary it up.

As for expensive; It is expensive now, yes, due to using such a shitload of land into growing crops to feed animals (with the horrible, horrible energy inefficiency). If we stopped doing that, fruit, vegetables and crops would be dirt-cheap (though it requires most of humanity to do it, I know, since you can't grow certain fruits and vegetables everywhere, and we still require trade).
And I'm not talking about vegans, nor are the articles. I'm talking about Vegetarians, that can have animal products like eggs and milk. I'd say that it is realistic, if we simply converted our current food-growth focus. Now, is it realistic that it will HAPPEN? Noooo. But work as a healthy diet? Yeah.

..And no, we have Falukorv, which is only required to have 40% 'meat' in it (and the rest, I really don't want to know what it is).

Realitycrash:
Now, yeah, a planned diet, but that doesn't necessarily need to be that hard. Yeah, it takes time to prepare a decent meal (though not that long), but hell, that argument is used today as well, and people still aren't eating healthy. Their tv-dinner has meat, but it isn't healthy. Ultimately, we are going to have to put some effort into staying healthy.

Not to mention, it's the 21st century. You can get vegetarian ready meals and fast food pretty much anywhere if that's what you feel like.

Also, "meat-replacers" are dirt cheap compared to meat which hasn't been crammed full of antibiotics and steroids. Canned beans and so forth, as you suggest, are even cheaper than that.

Nonsense. I think cute animals are used as propaganda because of the belief that the general public only gives a shit about cute animals, so it makes more sense to use a fluffy bunny wabbit for your campaign than a salamander. I mean hippos are fucking butt ugly (as are all pachyderms in my opinion) and there is a huge conservation effort aimed at protecting them.

Hardcore_gamer:
Why are cute animals given a special treatment?

Is this a serious question? People have preferences and they tend to act in accordance with those preferences. They favor things and disfavor things. Some people even treat their families and friends as though they were more important than other people. Astonishingly discriminatory, I know!

"Kindchenschema". They remind us of babies. We're intrinsically protective of babies, both human and other animals. Cuteness is quite a big advantage, although there are countless instances where it doesn't help. Male baby chicks? Friggin' cute, yet they are destroyed (and not in a nice way, look up the shredders) en massť in factory farms because they don't need roosters, they need hens. In those cases, it's largely an "out of sight, out of mind" deal.

Furthermore, I disagree with the OP's premise. A lot of the animals environmentalists try to protect are anything but cute. They try to protect them because they're endangered. Bengal tigers are majestic and all, but hardly cute. Polar bears are blood-soaked murder machines, but they need protection. Particular snakes are - to most people - anything but cute, but if they are endangered they need protection. While on an individual level, protecting a cute animal if we see one is due to our bias towards cuteness, the "Kindchenschema", on a larger scale we are far from only caring about the cute ones.

As for farm animals; I think a lot of our lack of caring for their death is due to them being raised specifically to be killed; just like those dogs they eat in Eastern Asian countries (those are very unlike the family dogs people have around here). That doesn't mean people don't care about howthey die and how they are killed, though. Animal protections on farms have made some big progress in Europe in particular and while there's still a lot of needless suffering going on, I don't see a reason not to limit that while still eating meat. But meat-eating will have to be reduced anyway, if we want to be sustainable at some point. It's just too energy-inefficient to do on as large a scale as we currently do.

Blablahb:
Totally inaccurate statement. Food and scientific research are a valid necessary purpose, fur farming is not.

I wasn't trying to draw an equivalence, but rather they're all jobs that involve a strong stomach.

And, you know some people would call fur farming and the meat trade equally barbaric, right?

Personally, I've "made my peace" with the idea that humans exploit animals. They're delicious to eat, and comfortable to wear, and as long as some basic welfare and humane treatment is in place I see nothing wrong with that. I'd support wearing fur every bit as much as I consider it normal to wear a leather jacket, belt and shoes, if only they were comparable in terms of the pain the animal goes through. I might be a callous bastard but I'm not a sadist.

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