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Potemkin wrote

Some interesting thoughts! I think I can understand some of what the OP is getting at. I'd like to address a couple of the points.

Firstly, we need to draw out some unspoken ambiguities. Corporate, monocultural crop production has many problems, some of which were already named--chemicals, destruction of land for monocultures, genetic engineering, etc. However, when comparing the ecological affects of corporate agriculture when compared to the corporate meat industry, agriculture is always MUCH less polluting and resource intensive.

The next thought is the difference in ecological impact and ethical consideration of the individual versus these large industries. One of the issues we should have with moderate liberalism generally is a lack of class consciousness. Liberal environmentalists will fault individual working-people for environmental degradation without holding corporations to account. Yet, even the most polluting individual has less environmental impact than one CEO that can choose to dump industrial waste into freshwater systems, for example.

I choose to not eat meat, and I don't think that will ever change for me, as a personal choice. However, I would not advocate this to people that have worked out their own, sustainable, relationship with the natural environment. I would never preach veganism to Native Americans, for instance, as they already have a working relationship with nature. So therefore, I don't see a problem with someone choosing to hunt for subsistence--it certainly is less impacting on the environment than any big corporate polluter. I personally would never do this, however.

When discussing issues like these, I think it's very important to keep these distinctions in mind and not get lost in ambiguity. We can't say, for example, that "humans" are polluters. Of course we are, but we must be more specific. The fact is, there are certain people in our society that have more power, and more ability to impact the environment than most working-people will ever have. It's not humans per se that are the issue, it's primarily CEOs making decisions for shareholders and profit. Not the wage worker that tosses their candy wrapper on the ground (though out of personal responsibility, I would argue we should still try to throw away and recycle and all that).

Corporate agriculture will always be better than the corporate meat industry. Individual horticulture will always be better than individual animal slaughter. However, an individual that chooses to hunt for subsistence will always have a lower environmental footprint than buying corporate meat. It's all a matter of degrees.

My argument is that, until the corporate agriculture and meat industries are done away with (in favor of alternative, sustainable methods), we should not point our fingers at the subsistence hunter, especially at the expense of holding these hugely polluting corporations to account.