Veganism and libertarians

Some people think veganism is libertarian.  Because an animal deserves the same respect one human a human gives to another, by following the NAP.  This sounds nice and feels nice, but does veganism work?  Let’s look at it more carefully. 
  1. Eating meat is healthy and thus necessary. Thus a healthy human is a hunter either directly or indirectly. Veganism works at the expense of human’s fertility and longevity. (We must compare to veganism, not vegetarianism, if this is a moral issue … which incidentally it’s not. see #2)
  2. This is not a moral issue.
    1. An animal cannot be held responsible for its actions.
    2. An animal cannot provide restitution after harming a person, or their property.
    3. This is why you cannot extend the NAP to an animal.
    4. A wild animal walks into traffic, and causes an accident. Can you call the animal’s insurance company and file a claim? Of course not. Can you expect the animal to make someone whole? Ever? No. A person loses their life as a result of the animal initiated accident. Who should be responsible? Anyone? No one. This is why you cannot extend the NAP to an animal.
  3. Feelings emphasized here. If you feel like animals should be left alone, we can all respect that. Just don’t expect anyone else to follow it, see #4. What you want or feel about what other people do holds no moral obligation over anyone else. It’s no different from me feeling like men should open the door for women. It’s personal preference, not a moral issue per se. A man/woman can do whatever s/he wants. Likewise, a human can too, whether they hunt animals for food, sport, hygiene, spite, or any other reason.
  4. Incentives.

    What if you gave incentives to people so they had a reason to do what you asked, and benefit themselves at the same time? As a vegan telling non-vegans they should extend the NAP to animals (which they can’t, because animals can’t be held responsible and can’t reciprocate), why should anyone do anything for you? As a libertarian, would you demand anything from another person?  Or would you grant them the freedom to explore their humanity while granting other humans the same freedom?  Why would you ask them to jeopardize their minds, bodies, longevity for a cause that has no personal benefit to them and no moral conviction? How is this any different from tyrants (people in the state) saying people should follow the tyrant’s orders and give up their time, property, or their own bodies, just because those tyrants say so? Not even for money.  Wouldn’t better incentives go a longer way?  Here are some ways you could incentivize veganism.

    1. Win-win.  Try to understand why people eat meat and animal products, and provide to those people (at a cost of course, but equal or less than the cost they pay for animal options) a reason to switch to a vegan solution.  Provide vegan foods that support the same health, vitality and fertility animal foods do, for example.  Provide ‘vegan’ options that allow people to follow the NAP and still hunt if they do it for sport or enjoyment (video games)?
    2. Social.  Make veganism popular and start a social movement. Your followers would know you are vegan and imitate you by being vegan themselves.
    3. Ostracism.  Make your entire community a vegan one, and refuse to do business or form friendships or intimate relationships with any non-vegans.
    4. Put your money where your mouth is.
      1. Buy land where animals live and protect them from human predators.  Other libertarians, out of respect for your property rights, would not trespass on your land or harm your animals.  You might encourage others to follow suit.  You would give your cause legitimacy, and elevate it above the moral pronouncements of tyrants.  Again, telling you what you can’t put in your body or what you must put in your body is no different from telling you if you can hunt an animal or not.
      2. Pay people to be vegan — if you are wildly successful in other areas, just pay people to do what you want them to …

In my opinion, these are all excellent options that support other vegans, make vegans the partners of non-vegans and not their enemies, and elevate veganism from a popular virtue-signal into a legitimate movement.