My favorite article from week five was Temple Grandin's "Thinking Like Animals". Grandin attempts to bridge the gap between the desires of the factory farmers and the needs of the animals; she offers a realistic starting point to moving towards a more ethical food industry. Grandin eases opponents of animal welfare by offering a better means of processing the animals, better for for both farmer and cow. What she is doing is introducing people who have never before considered the mindset of cows to that mindset, but veiled in the disguise of a better machine for processing cattle. Other authors we have read have advocated for a complete liberation of animals, though just, these are hardly realistic options in our complicated world . Grandin offers an excellent starting point, putting ourselves into cows hoofs so we can ease their suffering in the slaughter house.
However there are points that Grandin makes that I strongly disagree with. "Death at the slaughter plant is quicker and less painful than death in the wild. Lions dining on the guts of a live animal is much worse in my opinion". I think this is a naive statement, the life of a factory farm is equivalent to life on death row: trapped in a camp for a period of time until the eventual early death. For the alternative I must quote 1982's "Conan the Barbarian". When a warrior is asked what is best in life, he replies with "The open steppe, fleet horse... and the wind in your hair". A brief life of freedom will always be greater than an extended one of imprisonment.