The majority of people should be vegan or vegetarian
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With 2 votes and 3 points ahead, the winner is ...
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Vegan: a person who does not eat any food derived from animals and who typically does not use other animal products.
Vegetarian: a person who does not eat meat, and sometimes other animal products, especially for moral, religious, or health reasons.
BOP = shared
Pro: The majority of people should be vegan or vegetarian
Con: The majority of people should NOT be vegan or vegetarian
- As likely expected, to deliver an argument to the effect that the majority of people should become either vegan or vegetarian, I will analyze various impacts that moving towards vegan and vegetarian diets with have on society, its collective health, and the environment. Lastly, we will analyze the impacts of our consumer choices on the sufferings of other beings and conclude that for this set of reasons, the majority of people should go vegan.
- Altering one's diet toward veganism or vegetarianism yields considerably beneficial results for the environment. As Joseph Poore from the University of Oxford delineates: “Changing your diet to avoid animal products reduces your emissions for a typical global consumer by 28 percent, land use by 75% and water pollution by around 60%,” and further, "[d]iet change is the single biggest way to reduce your impact on the environment. Not just emissions, but other environmental indicators: biodiversity, water use, habitat loss, deforestation, nitrogen and phosphorus pollution." The Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine further documents that these empirics are both confirmed and endorsed by the United Nations. From these points of research, it is evident that if people were to adopt vegan or vegetarian diets, the environment will be greatly improved from its entailed benefits toward resource and ecological conservation.
- Other large studies such as Analysis and valuation of the health and climate change cobenefits of dietary change also inform us that [t]ransitioning toward more plant-based diets that are in line with standard dietary guidelines could reduce global mortality by 6–10% and food-related greenhouse gas emissions by 29–70% compared with a reference scenario in 2050." Mortality will be expounded upon on b.1.
- According to Oxford: "Avoiding meat and dairy is ‘single biggest way’ to reduce your impact on Earth." With research showing that "without meat and dairy consumption, global farmland use could be reduced by more than 75% – an area equivalent to the US, China, European Union and Australia combined – and still feed the world," the planet will receive a significant benefit if the majority of people took the action to reduce their animal product consumption by adopting a veganism or vegetarian diet.
- Observing the paper The Animal-Human Interface and Infectious Disease in Industrial Food Animal Production: Rethinking Biosecurity and Biocontainmen by Jay P. Graham, Ph.D. et.al. we find that the impact of animal agriculture towards the development of enhanced bacteria, viruses, diseases, and likelihood for epidemic and pandemic outbreaks is profound. "in 2004 indicates that the odds of H5N1 outbreaks and infections were significantly higher in large-scale commercial poultry operations as compared with backyard flocks. These data suggest that successful strategies to prevent or mitigate the emergence of pandemic avian influenza must consider risk factors specific to modern industrialized food animal production."
- Additionally, studies like "The infectious disease trap of animal agriculture" demonstrate that "intensification of animal agriculture through confinement and industrialization has directly led to the emergence of viruses including Nipah and H5N1 influenza (“swine flu”) (18) and antibiotic-resistant infectious bacteria including methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli." Dangerous strains of viruses emerge from the prevalence of animal agriculture, and the demand for these products creates the size of the industries we see today. From this, as Hayek concludes in the study, "[p]reventing zoonotic diseases require international coordination to reduce the high demand for animal-sourced foods." Now the question is what is a good if not the best way to reach this goal, and evidently, a shift to vegan and vegetarian diets will considerably reduce the demand for animal products.
- This is extensive to the point that one of the key measures we can take to reduce large-scale impositions of global suffering from pandemics and animal-borne diseases is reducing our demand for and consumption of meat products. There are several imperative health benefits to veganism or vegetarianism. Some studies reported upon by BBC for example found that people who eat vegan and vegetarian diets "have a lower risk of heart disease, but a higher risk of stroke, possibly partly due to a lack of B12" and further that "those who didn't eat meat had 10 fewer cases of heart disease and three more strokes per 1,000 people compared with the meat-eaters."
- Apart from vastly being imperative towards the health and wellness of individuals, the reduction in severe medical emergencies likely comes with prospective savings in the medical field. Mayo Clinic also confirms what we would expect of the converse research shows that "people who eat red meat are at a higher risk of death from heart disease, stroke or diabetes. Processed meats also make the risk of death from these diseases go up."
- Analysis and valuation of the health and climate change cobenefits of dietary change also analyze the number of annual lives that will be saved from switching to different degrees of a plant-based diet. Respectively, from (1) moving to fewer animal-sourced foods (2) moving to vegetarianism, and (3) adopting veganism:
- (1) "...[m]oving to diets with fewer animal-sourced foods would have major health benefits (Fig. 1A). Compared with the reference scenario, we project that adoption of global dietary guidelines (HGD) would result in 5.1 million avoided deaths per year [95% confidence interval (CI), 4.8–5.5 million] and 79 million years of life saved (CI, 75–83 million) (Fig. 1A and SI Appendix, Fig. S2). (2) "[t]he equivalent figures for the vegetarian (VGT) diet are 7.3 million avoided deaths (CI, 7.0–7.6 million) and 114 million life years saved (CI, 111–118 million) and for the..." (3) "vegan (VGN) diet 8.1 million avoided deaths (CI, 7.8–8.5 million) and 129 million life years saved (CI, 125–133 million)."
- Peer-reviewed studies within the field of medical sciences support the notion that with an increased degree of moving away from animal products, especially adopting veganism and vegetarianism will result in 7-8.1 million fewer deaths per year.
- Marco Springmann's analysis as cited above also evidences that "45–47% of all avoided deaths were from reduced coronary heart disease (CHD), 26% from stroke, 16–18% from cancer, and 10–12% from type 2 diabetes mellitus," confirming the proposition that overall, a vegan diet and a decrease in animal product consumption is a net benefit to the health of individuals.
- Studies estimate that 95 "is the average number of animals spared each year by one person's vegan diet." This is the demand evaluative impact of a vegan diet. This is not only sparing the lives of animals alone, but the degrees of torturous suffering experienced by them in factory farming systems. It is certainly immoral to cause suffering that is unnecessary, or that need not be imposed, and it is clear that the majority of people do not require animal products, especially with extensive studies showing that vegan and plant-based diets are both healthier (as shown above) and significantly cheaper (Oxford Univerity Research, The global and regional costs of healthy and sustainable dietary patterns: a modelling study).
- From this we derive that we don't need to exploit animals to cause needless suffering, we have healthier and cheaper options that are in culmination, better for the environment and society as a whole. And because of this, I think it is clear that the majority of people should be vegans or vegetarians.
Meat processing in the UK employs around 97,000 people
In 2019, the U.S. food and beverage manufacturing sector employed 1.7 million people, or just over 1.1 percent of all U.S. nonfarm employment. In thousands of food and beverage manufacturing plants located throughout the country, these employees were engaged in transforming raw agricultural materials into products for intermediate or final consumption. Meat and poultry plants employed the largest percentage of food and beverage manufacturing workers, followed by bakeries, and beverage plant
Plant-based meat substitutes taste and chew remarkably similar to real beef, and the 13 items listed on their nutrition labels -- vitamins, fats and protein -- make them seem essentially equivalent.But a Duke University research team's deeper examination of the nutritional content of plant-based meat alternatives, using a sophisticated tool of the science known as 'metabolomics,' shows they're as different as plants and animals.
Meat-substitute manufacturers have gone to great lengths to make the plant-based product as meaty as possible, including adding leghemoglobin, an iron-carrying molecule from soy, and red beet, berries and carrot extracts to simulate bloodiness. The texture of near-meat is thickened by adding indigestible fibers like methyl cellulose. And to bring the plant-based meat alternatives up to the protein levels of meat, they use isolated plant proteins from soy, peas, and other plant sources. Some meat-substitutes also add vitamin B12 and zinc to further replicate meat's nutrition.
However, many other components of nutrition do not appear on the labels, and that's where the products differ widely from meat, according to the study, which appears this week in Scientific Reports.
- Most of round two will be focused on rebuttals, but I will make notes on the fact that various lies were made about my case. Con even goes as far as to say that my actions in making an argument for the resolution are actually supporting "anti-natalism." I urge the voters to ignore these points as well as various other immaterial or unsubstantiated claims that may be brought to light.
- Dropped. Extend.
- Dropped. Extend.
- Dropped. Extend.
- Dropped. Extend.
- This is the only argument I can detect somewhat of a response to. In the previous round, I argued that because evidence suggests that going vegan or vegetarian will reduce the demand for animal products which will reduce them being bred into existence to endure suffering and torture in factory farms, and because we conjunctively do not need to eat animals, that we should not take actions that cause needless suffering. Con says:
Pro tells us that 'needless suffering' is to blame but what of the needless poverty that may come from all turning vegetarian? What of the animals?
- First, pro has provided no empirical evidence for some sort of trend statistically or practically significant casual shift from non-economically impoverished conditions to economically impoverished conditions as a result of the majority of people going vegan or vegetarian. He has only vaguely gestured that people may lose their jobs which does not evidence this.
- In my first rebuttal, I will give both an empirical and a principled response to this, the first humoring the point after being briefly granted and the second disproving the notion altogether.
- Con here states or implies the possibility that people can lose their jobs if the majority of people shifted to vegetarian or vegan diets.
- First, I almost struggle to see the relevance to the topic, people lose their jobs all the time as a result of social shifts. For example, many people who work in the newspaper industry lost their jobs as the prevalence of digital media increased. This does not mean people should continue to read printed newspapers just because there is an outdated industry there. As society finds more efficient and beneficial practices, we move towards them, and the evidence I have presented has shown these diets to be just that.
- The fact that someone could lose their job if people no longer use a product is not an argument that people should continue to use that given product anymore the fact that horse-drawn cart makers could lose their jobs is not a good reason that people should not drive cars. This notion is simply irrelevant to whether or not the majority of people should pursue these diets even if granted.
- However, I won't grant this in any capacity. Researchers for studies on the prospective impact of plant-based diet shifts such as reported here "expect that these job losses will be offset by growth in other sectors, including flour milling, maize processing and oilseed farming," so it appears that con is incorrect about the true net labor impact of this change in consumption. Furthermore, other studies such as Jobs in a net-zero emissions future in Latin America and the Caribbean predict that "the plant-based agriculture sector in 2030 will enjoy a net creation of 19 million jobs while animal-based agriculture will face a potential loss of 4 million jobs with decarbonization."
Do you see anywhere in Pro's entire thesis about how we ensure that the land space, resources and expertise for better?
- This sentence does not appear to be coherent, because it contains an error. To focus, when con says: "...how we ensure that the land space, resources, and expertise for better," there is a missing regular verb. If what is meant is "used" for better, it would be no different from how we operate under any prominent generally capitalist economic model. People sell and purchase land, build homes, businesses, etc, and market forces serve as the drivers for innovation.
- Con cites some sources about plant-based meat etc. No part of my case made any reference to plant-based meat, cultured meat, etc, so I will dismiss this as irrelevant. One can be vegan with or without wanting to eat fake meat. My argument is that the majority of people should go vegan because it will produce significantly better outcomes for the environment and the planet, produce significantly better health outcomes for people, and reduce needless animal torture.
Yes, that's right, what do you think is going to happen to all the farmed animals when the majority of people are vegetarian and vegan overnight? If people read this debate and obeyed Pro's advice, there would be a mass slaughter of the kinds you cannot fathom.
- First of all, nothing in the resolution entails that this transition should take place overnight. All I am arguing is that the majority of people should be vegans or vegetarians. This transition could pragmatically and naturally take place gradually over years of time, whereas con must argue it should not happen at all.
- Secondly, there are various options for these animals that will gradually be bred less and less into existence with a vanquishing demand. Because of this, there will not be a need to engage in the killing of these animals, rather, we should eventually be expanding our apparatus of resources toward their conservation. On my view, for example, animal sanctuaries should be constructed for this purpose. "When there are fewer of these animals, they will be able to live more natural lives."
- With nearly the entirety of my case dropped, and the entirety of con's case proven to be a collection of strawmen and poorly evaluated claims, the trajectory of the debate is clear at this moment.
On average, 86 percent of people surveyed for the Statista Global Consumer Survey in 39 countries said that their diet contained meat – highlighting that despite the trend around meat substitutes and plant-based products, eating meat remains the norm almost everywhere in the world.
Alright, we 'saved the environment' but how? Do you see anywhere in Pro's entire thesis about how we ensure that the land space, resources and expertise for better?
a. Environmental reasons
- Dropped. Extend.
- Dropped. Extend.
- Dropped. Extend.
Plant-based meat substitutes taste and chew remarkably similar to real beef, and the 13 items listed on their nutrition labels -- vitamins, fats and protein -- make them seem essentially equivalent.But a Duke University research team's deeper examination of the nutritional content of plant-based meat alternatives, using a sophisticated tool of the science known as 'metabolomics,' shows they're as different as plants and animals.Meat-substitute manufacturers have gone to great lengths to make the plant-based product as meaty as possible, including adding leghemoglobin, an iron-carrying molecule from soy, and red beet, berries and carrot extracts to simulate bloodiness. The texture of near-meat is thickened by adding indigestible fibers like methyl cellulose. And to bring the plant-based meat alternatives up to the protein levels of meat, they use isolated plant proteins from soy, peas, and other plant sources. Some meat-substitutes also add vitamin B12 and zinc to further replicate meat's nutrition.However, many other components of nutrition do not appear on the labels, and that's where the products differ widely from meat, according to the study, which appears this week in Scientific Reports.
MEAT AND FISH, SOURCES OF PROTEIN
Meat and fish are different food groups, but they have something in common. Both are sources of protein, a nutrient important for our muscular health. The proteins found in meat and fish are of high biological value, meaning that they contain all the essential amino acids required to support our body functions in the right proportion. Besides proteins, these groups supply varying amounts of other important nutrients such as vitamins and minerals.
MEAT: NUTRITIONAL PROFILE AND SERVINGS
Meat is a source of group B vitamins and several minerals such as iron or magnesium. Group B vitamins provide energy for our body and brain. Meat’s iron is “high availability iron”, meaning that it has a higher rate of absorption and usage than plant-based sources of iron for normal body functions. Eating 3 weekly servings of meat, choosing lean cuts, is recommended by the Spanish Society of Community Nutrition (SENC). According to the same guidelines, the consumption of red and processed meat should be moderated, once or less a week. However,
FISH: NUTRITIONAL PROFILE AND SERVINGS
Fish is a source of vitamin D and minerals such as phosphorus and iodine. Fat)ty fish is rich in polyunsaturated fatty acids Omega3 which reduce the “bad” cholesterol (LDL) – by cutting down triglyceride levels and preceding substances which play a major preventive role in cardiovascular diseases. Vitamin D is important for correct calcium fixation in bones, and phosphorus helps to maintain healthy teeth. Fish consumption is particularly important for pregnant and breastfeeding people and during periods of growth such as childhood. Eating 3 to 4 weekly servings of fish is recommended by the Spanish Society of Community Nutrition. Shellfish are high-quality protein sources too, low in sodium, calories, and saturated fats. Shellfish also contain polyunsaturated fatty acids Omega3, and are excellent sources of vitamins (B1, B12) and minerals such as phosphorus, potassium, iron, iodine, fluorine, and zinc.
b.1 Mortality and Global Level Population
- Dropped. Extend.
Yes, for two main reasons. First, people are rapidly displacing wildlife species across the globe, initiating a mass extinction event. Second, we are degrading ecosystems that provide essential, irreplaceable environmental services that future generations will need to live decent lives. Both these trends are driven, in large part, by immense and unprecedented numbers of human beings. Because there are too many of us to share the Earth fairly with other species and with future human generations, Earth is overpopulated.
Deforestation in Madagascar. Habitat destruction is threatening many of Madagascar’s endemic species, and has already driven some of them to extinction.
- Finally enough, at least there are now some responses to my case. In this round, I will go through my contentions first, my past rebuttals, and new rebuttals. I will note that con drops nearly every rebuttal I made last round and sadly continues to repeat himself.
- In this round, as another note, when pro lies about my case because my speeches have a clear structure, I point to the sections specifically.
...not one iota of proof or guarantee is there that the land will be used in a better way for the environment
- Pro's claims that there is not "one iota of proof" can be easily discounted by the multiple peer-reviewed studies and articles that report on them I cited expressly in my round-one arguments. I have already shown that "[d]iet change is the single biggest way to reduce your impact on the environment. Not just emissions, but other environmental indicators: biodiversity, water use, habitat loss, deforestation, nitrogen and phosphorus pollution," according to both the United Nations and research from Oxford University, both points being dropped by con. This is also disproven by the study I cited showing that [t]ransitioning toward more plant-based diets that are in line with standard dietary guidelines could reduce global mortality by 6–10% and food-related greenhouse gas emissions by 29–70% compared with a reference scenario in 2050." So despite con covering his eyes and ears, there is very strong evidence for this point, all of which has been cited throughout the debate.
Rather than encourage us to crack and develop better anti-new-virus combat teams, Pro would have us stay on low-defense...
- This claim was not made. Ignore it as a strawman. We should both be developing anti-virus medication as well as reducing harmful practices that develop resistant viruses. There is no reason it has to be one or the other.
Are we to seriously consider freak cases of viruses in animals to be the reason to turn the 'majority' vegan/vegetarian? What exactly does Pro want me to retort?
- If you engage with the evidence I presented, these are not freak cases. In addition to the previous study, "A 2004 joint consultation of the World Health Organisation (WHO), Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) and World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE, the world’s leading veterinary authority), concluded that “anthropogenic factors such as agricultural expansion and intensification to meet the increasing demand for animal protein” are one of the major drivers of zoonotic disease emergence." Further "animals on factory farms are routinely fed vast amounts of antibiotics in order to keep them alive in conditions that would otherwise kill them. Because of this, even the most powerful antibiotics aren’t effective against certain bacteria, contributing to the emergence of “superbugs” – new, aggressive, antibiotic-resistant pathogens," and "the growing demand for animal protein resulted in a tripling of the occurrence of antibiotic resistance in disease-causing bacteria in livestock between 2000 and 2018." So yes, one of the reasons people should go vegan is because of this horrible phenomenon of pathogen resistance documented extensively in the scientific community. The article titled says it perfectly: "Factory farming conditions and antibiotic-resistant pathogens emerging as a result of them pose an existential threat to humans in the form of zoonotic diseases. Why it’s time to produce and consume food more thoughtfully."
IF ONLY 50.01% OF THE WORLD IS the 'majority' VEGETARIAN THERE'D STILL BE MEAT TRADE which lets there be a pandemic at any time really.
- Con's confusion is peculiar here. No one claimed the meat trade would end. All I am arguing is that it would reduce the risk of a pandemic and the development of resistant bacteria and viruses. Just because a problem still exists does not mean it can't be attacked and reduced, just like we may not have a cure for cancer, but we can treat cancer to a greater degree. As I have shown this is a situation imperative to address.
- Once again, as stated in round two, meat substitutes are not relevant to my case for vegan and vegetarian diets. All my argument is, is that removing meat consumption from your diet is overwhelmingly more healthy than not, with various studies cited to that effect. Pro also lies that this was "ignored," as the response is clearly included under Rebuttals > I. Transition Evaluation. Another clear misrepresentation of my case.
- Pro just cites a source that shows meat and fish have protein. I am not sure how this is relevant. No one argued that meat is deficient of any sort of nutritional value or that meat has no protein, just that people can be overwhelmingly more healthy by not eating meat and pursuing a plant-based diet. I cited multiple studies for this claim including the points of the research, and con has engaged with none of them.
In other words, there are health benefits outweighing and/or equally weighing agaisnt the drawbacks of excessive meat and fish in the diet. It's a moot point
- Con's error here shows clear confusion. Just because X has a benefit and Y has a benefit, does mean that X and Y are of equal benefit, or equal in any capacity. For example, eating a chocolate cake for dinner may have some minor niche benefits and eating a salad meal will also have benefits, but it does not follow that the foods are equally as healthy. And it is clear from the evidence I have shown, that veganism and/or vegetarian diets come with the overall best health outcomes and that the more meat is taken out of your diet, the healthier you will be. Extend my sources.
- Con misunderstands my point here. My contention has nothing to do with overpopulation as an issue, it simply shows that because vegan and vegetarian diets make people live longer and improve their quality of life, they are thus healthier diets. "b.1" is a subset of "b" which was "health."
What?!! The world is currently overpopulated how is this even the issue to base the majority of the world turning vegetarian/vegan on?...If meat and fish somehow are argued to lower our lifespan, that actually could be a net-good...
- As noted, the issue of overpopulation is not what I am arguing concerning. But regardless, this is perhaps con's weakest point in the debate. Globally, poorer countries are developing and gaining a better quality of life. This is the basics of the Demographic Transition Model. Just because the population increases, does not mean people should live worse lives and be unhealthy. Because we progress with technology as we become more efficient, we develop new ways to manage our resources.
- Secondly, transitioning to veganism and vegetarianism is one of the best ways to manage overpopulation because all the land used for animal agriculture can be occupied by humans and be more sustainably and efficiently used to manage the issue. In fact, the study "Options for keeping the food system within environmental limits" found that "[s]witching to a plant-based diet, halving food waste, and improving existing farming practices can feed the projected world population of 10 billion by 2050," so con's argument can just be turned on him.
- Con also cites species displacement as an issue. Unfortunately for him, studies show that "a truly staggering 60 percent loss of global biodiversity can be blamed squarely on our meat-based diets." So if this is con's concern, veganism and vegetarianism are the solution, and this argument is self-refuting once again.
- Dropped. Extend.
- Dropped. Extend.
- Once again, there is no entitlement that animals have to be slaughtered as mentioned in round one, especially because animals will these animals that will gradually be bred less and less into existence with a vanquishing demand to a point where they can be conservated. But, even if this were to happen, it would be far better than the continued future of breeding billions of animals into existence to experience torturous lives, so even if this happened, it would not invalidate any reason for the majority of people to go vegan as it would save many animals and many future animals from extreme suffering (95 is the average number of animals spared each year by one person's vegan diet).
Why should all meat eaters that enjoy meat suffer unnecessarily?
- Not eating meat is not suffering, just like not eating candy or chocolate cake is not suffering, because you can just replace them with other foods. Secondly, I am not forcing anyone to go vegan or vegetarian, I am arguing that people should go vegan or vegetarian because it is better for their health, the environment, and the reduction in animal suffering.
- Just like Chefs that specialize in foods people don't generally eat anymore, they can adapt their cooking skills.
- Extend rebuttal Round 2 > I. Transition Evaluation > "Job Losses" from which con has offered no response.
- Once again, eating different meals that are better for your health, cheaper, better for the environment, just as good quality if not better quality is not suffering, and better as a whole is not suffering.
- I have shown that in nearly every way veganism is the best course of action for humanity. Even con's counters have been turned against him into arguments for my side. With con hardly engaging with my evidence, he decision is clear.
All we have to do is refine the techniques and where we fish, farm and how we use the land and treat the creatures and we'd be able to put all science to actually useful work.
Alright, we 'saved the environment' but how? Do you see anywhere in Pro's entire thesis about how we ensure that the land space, resources and expertise for better?In fact, what I would argue is this:Every shred of scientific work being put into meat and fish alternatives is a waste of science, relatively speaking.We could be curing cancer, AIDS heck we could be focusing instead of making tasty meat and fish alternatives on making alternative body organs for transplant and Pro's outline doesn't specify how many scientists are burning energy day in day out, using their time, recources and potential and throwing it into a fancy alternative meat and fish product.