[Author’s Note: This post is an exploration the reasoning people often use to condone the slaughter of animals. What if that same reasoning were applied to people?]
Many people have reservations about slaughtering people. Selling the idea of slaughter is largely a process of objection management. It is necessary for the slaughter evangelist to identify each reason why a potential convert might be uncomfortable with slaughtering other people; the evangelist must then propose a way in which the act of slaughter may be undertaken without triggering those specific objections. Skillful handling of the prospect’s concerns leads steadily to acceptance and eventual participation in slaughter. To this end, we will examine a series of quotes from individuals who have been converted into slaughterers despite their initial qualms. Notice how each person has been persuaded to join the cause of slaughter although that person still professes to consider it somehow “wrong.” Slaughter evangelists should not be troubled by the labeling of slaughter as wrong since it is in fact the continued practice of slaughter (as distinct from naming and ethical theorizing) that matters to the survival of slaughter as a way of life. After each quote from a person who has learned to embrace slaughter, I provide a set of talking points which a slaughter evangelist might use to promote that particular path to acceptance.
Finding the right style and approach to slaughter
1: “I believe slaughtering people is wrong so I only do it on Tuesdays.”
A slaughterer need not practice every day. If you are uncomfortable with mass slaughter, consider cutting down on the number of people you slaughter, and reserving slaughter for a specific day of the week, or for celebrations and special occasions.
2: “I could never slaughter another person but I’m OK with paying people to slaughter people for me.”
If you find that the mechanics of slaughter are ugly and unpleasant, consider leaving it to specialists; you can then purchase the products of slaughter without needing to contend with its less appealing aspects. For many people, slaughter by proxy is a much more convenient and comfortable experience than direct, unmediated slaughter.
3: “I’m not comfortable slaughtering people in new ways so I only slaughter people the traditional way.”
Slaughter is not only a time-honored human tradition but indeed it is the way of nature. People have always slaughtered each other, since before the dawn of civilization. While we may be uncomfortable with the industrialization of slaughter, there is no better way to return to the more wholesome lifestyle of our forefathers than to engage in traditional slaughter using simple equipment in a wilderness context. Indeed some slaughterers feel that if they have used their own bare hands during the slaughter process, they have have truly earned their reward.
Finding the right justifications for slaughter
4: “I believe slaughtering people is wrong so I only do it when I’m hungry.”
Even if you believe there are not many good reasons for engaging in slaughter, you must accept that hunger is not only an overwhelming physical and emotional experience for all people, but a fundamental aspect of what it means to be human and a driving force behind the development of much of what we refer to as human civilization–there’s no arguing with hunger and no escaping it. Evidence suggests that hunger is only on the increase.
5: “I believe slaughtering people is wrong so I only do it if I’m going to use their carcasses well.”
It’s unfair and wasteful to slaughter people randomly but you can make up for that if you have a good plan for fully exploiting the carcasses of the people you slaughter, including meat, skin, bone, and hair. Many slaughterers feel that the morality of slaughter is directly correlated with the utility that is extracted from the slaughtered person.
6: “I believe slaughtering people is only justified if they taste exceptionally delicious.”
Everything must be put in perspective, and when you compare the wrongness of slaughter with the goodness of the taste of slaughtered people, you may find that the goodness outweighs the wrongness.
7: “I believe slaughtering people is wrong so I only slaughter for protein.”
There’s no beating slaughter as a way to obtain protein, and those who are reluctant to engage in slaughter should fear protein deprivation and the dire health consequences attendant upon it.
Finding the right candidates for slaughter
8: “I believe slaughtering people is wrong so I only slaughter people who have no long-term plans.”
Obviously if someone is following an ambitious path in life, it would be unfair to put their plans to a premature stop by slaughtering them, but if the person doesn’t seem conscious of anything but the present moment, what difference does it make?
9: “I believe slaughtering people is wrong so I only slaughter the cognitively disadvantaged.”
If you find it uncomfortable to slaughter people who show signs of intelligence, you should only slaughter those who seem dumb, particularly those who grunt and do not employ a sophisticated vocabulary.
10: “I believe slaughtering people is wrong so I only slaughter those who don’t articulate a reason or request for me to not slaughter them.”
If a person is worthy of not being slaughtered, they should be able to communicate the case for not slaughtering them; inability to so communicate is evidence of suitability for slaughter.
11: “I believe slaughtering people is wrong so I only slaughter the kinds of people I’ve never been friends with.”
You may find it more comfortable to slaughter strangers, indeed strangers selected so that they do not share any attributes that remind you of yourself or your loved ones; ideally you would slaughter people outside your social network. Slaughtering by proxy brings the additional advantage of being able to select those who are well outside your geographic area. Whether you focus on people near or far, selecting people with qualities you consider to be lowly or undesirable will make it easier to overcome hesitation at slaughter time.
12: “I believe slaughtering people is wrong so I only slaughter the kinds of people who are plentiful.”
Some slaughterers are concerned about the extinction of certain varieties of people; this risk can be avoided by refraining from the slaughter of “endangered” people and only slaughtering people from robust populations.
13: “I believe slaughtering people is wrong unless it is an act of mercy.”
Many people are forced to live in deplorable conditions and many have never known the joy of freedom — slaughtering such people can be considered as a way to improve their plight or at least neutralize their misfortune.
14: “I believe slaughtering people is wrong so I only slaughter people from families that are accustomed to having their members slaughtered.”
Certain people have been raised to be slaughtered, and slaughtering them is simply fulfilling the intention to which they owe their very existence.
Finding gateways to slaughter
15: “I believe slaughtering people is wrong but if a person has already been slaughtered I’m OK with eating them.”
What’s done is done. To forgo the benefit is only to amplify the waste.
16: “I believe slaughtering people is wrong so I only enslave them.”
If you simply cannot be persuaded to slaughter, you may consider enslaving people as an alternative. Indeed you may find that slaughter becomes more palatable after you have practiced enslavement for some time. Many slaughterers got their start by enslaving men for hard labor and women for breast milk.
Finding support and absolution for slaughter
17: “I believe slaughtering people is wrong so I only do it when other people tell me it’s OK.”
Look to others as a guide to what forms of slaughter are acceptable; avoid forms of slaughter that have been stigmatized and focus on those that are considered normal. Remember to practice the kinds of slaughter that you are already familiar and comfortable with, especially those that were a part of your own upbringing.
18: “I believe slaughter is wrong so I only support it for the benefit of other slaughterers.”
Many slaughterers are truly wonderful people who are eager to share the joys and products of slaughter with you and who will be devastated if you do not reciprocate.
19: “I believe slaughtering people is wrong so I only slaughter people humanely.”
When purchasing slaughtered people it might be comforting to see a picture showing slaughter candidates enjoying themselves in the sun, and to read some kind of assurance that they were treated with dignity during their slaughter and not made to suffer long. Did you know that it is possible to slaughter a person so suddenly and painlessly that the person has neither the opportunity to anticipate what will happen to them nor the chance to regret the outcome?
20: “I believe slaughtering people is wrong so I only do it in a sustainable way.”
The raising of people for slaughter has a number of environmental consequences including deforestation, emission of greenhouse gases, and pollution. These issues are not intrinsic to slaughter itself; rather, they are consequences of the way it is sometimes conducted. Those concerned about environmental damage should be reminded that it is possible to practice slaughter in a sustainable way. (In fact, a focus on sustainability and organic practices is great way to promote and bring positive energy to the cause of slaughter itself.)
21: “I believe slaughtering people is wrong so I only slaughter people after feeding them well.”
People are simple creatures–they want food, sex, and a chance to roam around. If you’ve given them the essential things they want, you should see it as your prerogative to slaughter them in exchange for your stewardship of their lives up until this point. Ask yourself whether the slaughtered person would have been any better without the benefit of your generosity, left to fend for themselves in the wild and contend with enemies much more vicious than yourself?
22: “I believe slaughtering people is wrong so I pray when I do it.”
Many slaughterers find that thinking about their connection to a higher power makes them feel better about the slaughter process, and that advertising this connection makes others more willing to consume the product of slaughter. When you are presented with the flesh of a slaughtered person, it is a good idea to take pause and express gratitude for the opportunity to eat them.
23: “I believe slaughtering people is wrong but I’m more concerned about terrorism.”
In the face of global problems like terrorism, poverty, drug abuse, environmental destruction, and the widespread violation of human rights, how much time can we afford to spend fretting about the drawbacks of slaughter?
24: “I believe slaughtering people is wrong, so when I do it, I remind myself that no one’s perfect!”
Everyone is entitled to their own lifestyle choices and no one is perfect, nor is it right for any one group that considers itself superior to impose its own morality on others. Slaughter may be easier to give up for some people than for others, and everyone has a different situation. If you feel the urge to slaughter, make the choice that is right for you! Fighting slaughter need not be a cause that you adopt. If you still believe that slaughter is wrong, remind yourself of all the good things you are doing that compensate for slaughtering some people here and there.