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Towards a Vegan-Based Ethic

Dismantling Neo-Colonial Hierarchy Through an Ethic of Lovingkindness

Micol Kates

The book draws links between colonial and neo-colonial power structures which have sought to maintain hierarchies of dominance, resulting in cruel practices towards people at the bottom of the hierarchy and animals, who, in a colonial mindset, only exist for human gain. To counter these harm-based ideologies, and practices, veganism, as an ethical movement, is seeking to give voice to all those who support animals, and the rights of animals, while also seeking to give a voice to animals themselves. Additionally, veganism seeks to challenge the old-guard power structures and cruel practices perpetuated by colonial and neo-colonial systems associated with the dominant Ego power structure. Vegan ethics represent a shift from the dominant Ego model of human relations represented by a pyramid of power towards an Eco model of human relationships in which all Beings have equal worth and agency.

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11. The Nazis’ Human Holocaust and the Extreme Extermination of Animal Beings at the Hands of “Science”

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11 The Nazis’ Human Holocaust and the Extreme Extermination of Animal Beings at the Hands of “Science”

If companies that choose to view animals only as disposable test subjects were to recognize that animal beings have sentience, using animals on which to experiment would no longer be acceptable. Sadly, animals such as monkeys, cats, dogs, mice, rats and rabbits are still routinely used as test subjects by companies in many countries which have not yet recognized their sentience. The ways in which animals are hurt and abused for human gain can be likened to the ways in which the nazis used both human and animal victims in their “science experiments” (Cohen; Sztybel; Wells).

Cohen’s, “Nazi Medical Experimentation: The Ethics of Using Medical Data from Nazi Experiments” provides lucid examples of how the system of nazi domination justified the use of torture on othered people under the guise of “science experiments”. Indeed, Cohen’s work draws salient parallels between factory farming and concentration camps:

The Nazi physicians performed brutal medical experiments upon helpless concentration camp inmates. These acts of torture were characterized by several shocking features: (1) persons were forced to become subjects in very ←45 | 46→dangerous studies against their will; (2) nearly all subjects endured incredible suffering, mutilation, and indescribable pain; and (3) the experiments often were deliberately designed to terminate in a fatal outcome for their victims. (2)

Much in the same way the inmates of the nazi death camps were...

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