You try to justify it on the basis that we have no business fucking with what we haven't created, but beef cattle did not spring fully formed from the brow of Zeus.
No. We selectively bred them over the course of thousands of years to be our creatures. We also use them for much more more than food. We use their skins as leather, their meet is food, bones in adhesives. Hell, cow and pig parts are even used in actual industrial applications. We do, for the time being, need them. Now, that does not mean factory farming is justified. It is not in any way shape or form.
The main issue is one of Telos or purpose. A wild animal does not exist for us. It owns itself. Moreover nature has intrinsic in addition to instrumental value. It is a good in itself that need not be justified on the basis of human use or need. A cow is... a product of human culture. Outside of ethical obligation that the cow not needlessly suffer, it does in fact exist For us. We made it, and the sole reason that cow exists is so that it could be used.
I mean obviously as the population grew we had to feed everyone somehow, but frankly I don't think we'd be having this discussion at all if seals weren't cute.
Oh, but we would. I would be at least, and have.
People mentioned earlier that seals are quite a bit more intelligent than the average cow, but I don't really see anyone giving a shit about the thousands of pigs which were slaughtered in the last hour.
I actually do have problems with that. In fact, my pork consumption is almost non-existent (basically, if I do eat pork, it was an animal that was raised and slaughtered using a natural diet, humane methods, and where the animal lived a full and happy life.
Sport hunting is most definitely fraught with its own issues, but if you make that decision to go and kill a seal for its various products, you are at least owning that decision and taking responsibility for doing it.
If it were just a few guys going out and taking adult seals, that would be one thing (I dont have a problem with indigenous peoples...being predators. That is fine). Instead, it is the industrialized slaughter of the next generation of said seals.
"Non-essential" to whom? The advocate, the protestor, the consumer, the hunter, the producer, or the seller? The Canadian Department of Fisheries and Oceans maintains that the seal hunt is an economic mainstay of some northern communities. Are you oversimplifying a complex issue?
It is an economic mainstay because the fishermen in those regions wiped out fish stocks in the north atlantic. The aquatic ecosystem of the north atlantic ought not suffer for their error, which is exactly what will happen if they remove seals, and something they are on course to doing.
DFO again maintains that the seal hunts in Canada are conducted in a manner appoved by veterinarian and legislative bodies as humane, organized, and responsible. If you have an objection, don't you think you should take it up with the Marine Mammal Policy of Canada and those charged with its approval and enforcement?
I have already addressed all of that.
Clubbing something to death is not humane.
Organized... yeah. It is kind of industrial.
Taking 300k baby seals a year is not at all responsible. Read the motherfucking thread.
The regulatory agencies of any country are heavily lobbied. They do not hand down regulations. They negotiate those regulations between stake holders, and the end result is that quotas often bear no resemblance to what would actually be a sustainable harvest, or for that matter, humane.
For example, take a look at the carton of eggs in your refrigerator. Somewhere you will find a stamp certifying that the chickens were raised in accordance with proper animal husbandry standards. Now, take a look at this:Battery Cages
The eggs coming from those chickens are certified.
Or you could look at tuna stocks.
That is the result of these "responsible" quotas. There is absolutely no reason to think that seals are any different, particularly because catch quotas now are the same as catch quotas that brought a much less stressed seal population into free-fall.
Would you like me to mathematically simulate seal population fluctuations for you? I can do that.
The distinction isn't relevant to the discussion as in this context it's not like people are going out to club seals for laughs.
No, they are going out to kill them in order to supply a status symbol to rich people. Not much better. On the other hand, cows are killed to provide food, clothing to a huge portion of the population, glues, eyes for anatomy class, and materials needed in the industrial manufacture of a LOT of other things.