A week ago animals have received more horrible news.
After years of discussions and delays, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved the production, sale, and consumption of genetically modified Salmon, the first transgenic animal approved as food.
Fish farming, usually euphemized as aquaculture, is already the most rapidly growing agricultural industry with almost 10% average growth rate per year in the last four decades (2015 was the first time the consumption of factory farmed fishes exceeded the one of caught fishes), and it is about to get worse.
A fish exploitation expansion company from Massachusetts called AquaBounty, engineered salmon who grows much faster by adding a growth hormone regulating gene from another type of salmon. In addition to being much faster, the growth would also be year-round, as a result of another gene added from an ocean pout.
The genetically modified salmon reaches “market size” in 18 months instead of 3 years. It can mean that the same number of fishes would suffer half of the time, but it would most probably mean that the number of exploited fishes would be doubled. That is what happened in the chicken industry, and it keeps growing every year.
Just until a few decades ago the Chinese obtained over 90% of their calories from rice, wheat, beans, and tubers. However as China began to emerge from poverty and isolation in the 1980’s, the rising living standards, rapid urbanization and expansion of the middle class, have led to a significant and horrible change in the typical Chinese dinner plate.
Meat, eggs, and dairy products became a key source of food, with more than 20% of the total calories in the 2000’s.
In 1983 the meat consumption was 16 kilograms per person per year, 25 kilograms per person by 1995, 31 kilograms by 1999, 50 kilograms by 2000, and now it is more than 55 kilograms per person per year. That’s about 12% increase per year on a per capita basis, a threefold increase in less than 25 years.
This post is the third and last part in a series regarding what is referred as “a non-violent approach”. In the first post we argued that the allegedly historical success of non-violent struggles is a myth and a non-relevant approach when it comes to the animals’ struggle.
In the second post we argued that the allegedly non-violent approach is principally, philosophically and ideologically a violent and speciesist approach.
In this part, to complete the argument regarding the non-violence myth and on the occasion of the World Vegan Day, we argue that non-violence is even theoretically impossible, since practically there is no way to avoid violence. And it is certainly impossible merely by conducting a consumerist vegan lifestyle, which is far from being cruelty-free and non-violent, yet viewed as such by many activists and presented as the ideal to aspire to, by most of them.
Since many activists tend to jump to conclusions, to prevent potential misunderstandings, we want to clarify straight ahead that this post’s aim is not to argue for a better ethical lifestyle option than veganism. Veganism, despite its major ethical flaws, is by no doubt the best option.
As we mentioned in the answer to the question regarding advocating for a vegan world as part of our FAQ, in our article about veganism called Vegan Suffering and in our Manifesto, we are vegans ourselves and for a long time now, since there is no better option. And that is exactly the problem. This is the argument we want to make in this post.