Abstract

In a recent article, Timothy Hsiao criticizes the basic argument for moral vegetarianism. In this connection, Hsiao offers an interesting, original argument (that I’ll christen Hsiao’s Argument) with the conclusion that human consumption of meat solely for the purposes of nutrition trumps the welfare interests of nonhuman animals. In this article, however, I’ll argue that if Hsiao’s Argument isn’t to be problematically circular, we have very strong grounds for thinking that it is either unsound or invalid. Toward the end of this article, I’ll also show that a slightly modified version of Hsiao’s Argument—that I call Hsiao’s Argument*—fares no better than Hsiao’s Argument. So, the basic argument for moral vegetarianism looks to be in much better shape than Hsiao imagines.

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