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I was reading the first answer in this thread which considers vegetarianism from a moral standpoint: An excuse for not being a vegetarian

Is it ethical for human beings to eat meat? In order to consider this question, we need an moral framework capable of including both humans and animals; and that additionally matches our ethical intuitions on at least the following three test questions: Is human cannibalism acceptable? No. Is carnivorism among animals (such as a cat eating a mouse) acceptable? Yes. Are human actions vital to survival (such as eating plants, or killing viruses) acceptable? Yes.

My question is, why are these answers intuitively obvious? The author states them matter-of-factly, yet all of them seem like very interesting and deep philosophical questions in and of themselves, and yet, that entire aspect is completely skipped by the answer.

  1. Cannibalism acceptable?

Murder is intuitively not acceptable, disrespecting somebody's wishes for what should happen to their body post-mortem is intuitively not acceptable, but is the mere act of eating the meat of a dead body that happens to belong to the same species as oneself intuitively an unacceptable thing? Why? I don't see why that is obvious.

Don't get me wrong, eating something that was human meat would probably make me want to puke. But that doesn't make the act "intuitively immoral". I would also feel disgust and a feeling of grossity if I watched two human males having sex together, but that doesn't mean homosexuality is intuitively wrong.

  1. Is carnivorism among animals (cat eating mouse) acceptable?

Again, not only do I not think this has an obvious answer, I also think it's a fallacy to answer it matter-of-factly. Because note that this question is basically the same question as "Is it okay to eat meat" (except reduced to the level of animals), which is what the entire answer is supposed to address. So by answering this question as an obvious yes and taking it as a premise in order to answer that it is okay to eat meat (on a human level), this then seems like this is an example of begging the question.

  1. Are human actions vital to survival acceptable?

Once again, why is this an obvious yes? If it is vital to my survival to torture a littler baby to death, then does that mean it's "obviously acceptable" to do that? I mean, come on. This third question I would say actually is obvious... except the obvious answer is not yes, it's "not necessarily".

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    I think you raise some interesting points, but I'm not quite seeing the SE-answerable question you have about philosophy here. Can you clarify what you need help with in terms of philosophy? – virmaior Nov 11 '17 at 2:20
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My question is, why are these answers intuitively obvious? The author states them matter-of-factly, yet all of them seem like very interesting and deep philosophical questions in and of themselves, and yet, that entire aspect is completely skipped by the answer.

Intuition varies between people and is something that we believe without rational backing so it makes sense that clashing intuitions exists. They are matter of fact because they are intuitive to the person so they don't need explaining. Seems like circular logic but that is intuitive thinking usually is.

I personally think that intuition is not very valuable as it is not very reliable due to how it can easily be swayed by emotions or experiences (e.g. the baby torturing you proposed).

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