The question is motivated by reading the discussions on veganism:
Is 'veganism' a settled issue in Philosophy and Ethics? Why is it okay to eat meat but not to be cruel to animals?
While these threads provide many interesting, logical, and convincing arguments in favor of veganism, there is one thing that caught my attention: the issue is presented
not as a matter of personal preference/choice: I do not inflict paint on animals.; I do not want animals to suffer.
but as complying with an ethical/moral requirement: It is unethical/cruel to kill animals, so I do not it them in order to act ethically.; If people saw animals killed in front of them, they would not consume meat.
The implication is that people who adopt such arguments essentially try to influence others into adopting the same attitude (because it is ethical/moral = good), which in itself is a bad thing. Hence the questions:
- Can one meaningfully speak of ethics/morality of a single person, or is it always something attributed to (and agree upon by) a community?
- Would (or to what extent) an ethical argument in favor of veganism still hold, given that it possibly constitutes an unethical attempt to impose one's values/choices on others?
Disclaimer: I have no personal ax to grind against either vegans or meat-eaters.