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Practical ethics 2 By French_snack -- Report

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This follows on (of course) from "Practical ethics", and is based on the following blog entry of mine: http://frenchsnack.deviantart.com/journal/Up-next-and-your-characters-questions-434089445 . I also remain indebted to the philosopher Peter Singer for the title, and for a significant measure of inspiration.

This story is a collaborative work, in the sense that the characters' questions were written by their respective owners.

Crisis, Melany and Felarya itself belong to Karbo. Carver and Ian belong to TyrantFang55. Starwind and Elli belong to SCS (TheWiking2000). Tache belongs to Ishoam. Relina, Noxcia, Malika and Natalie belong to turboman500. Ciel belongs to Asuroth. Mina, Holly and Hazel belong to PrinnyDood-Abides. Songraka, and the Kadar in general, belong to lordmep, who came up with the idea of what they're doing here on the sidelines of the debate.

Thank you all for your participation; I hope you enjoy this!

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Ruler101

Posted by Ruler101 6 years ago Report

So, if I could throw my two cents into this, here's one of the things that got me about all this.

She does think it's wrong to kill living creatures. Just not enough to actually HELP them? Her reasoning of "it's wrong to shove my views on people" would be more persuasive if the subject wasn't MURDER.

French_snack

Posted by French_snack 6 years ago Report

Well, what exactly could she do? She does help those that she can, by giving them sanctuary and direction and advice. But she's never in a position to snatch people away from preds (she's stuck in one place), and she doubts she would have the resolve to do it in any case. Remember, she lives in a world where eating little people (and other living creatures) is *not* seen as murder. She's part of only a small minority who see it as wrong. It's rather difficult to be aggressively assertive in that context.

Take a real life parallel. Technically, one could argue that vegetarians here on Earth should try to sabotage industrial farms, rescue and heal and resettle as many animals as possible, etc… Yet they don't. Why not? For one thing, it wouldn't be feasible. For another, they're a minority, and they would face opprobrium (not to mention sanctions!) for doing what they see as morally right. That's essentially the position that Shelny is in.

Ruler101

Posted by Ruler101 6 years ago Report

I should explain a bit more, I posted my last comment without thinking.. I would not be having problems were the eating of humans or any other little's be necessary to survival. Mentioning the vegetarian analogy; it's actually easier for humans to maintain a healthy diet while remaining omnivorous. We evolved that way, it's more difficult to get proper amounts of nutrition just eating meat or just eating plants.

They all explicitly agree that eating other sapient beings is NOT necessary to survival. They do it purely for pleasure (for the most part, I'm not too familiar with the specifics) making the action immoral. They choose to kill other sapient life for their enjoyment.

And she is complicit. Here's the analogy I created, though it's admittedly not perfect. In the Souther United States, mid 1940's or so, a lynch mob has cornered a black man for supposedly harassing a white woman. One white man considers the action wrong, because murder is murder. He tells the lynch mob he thinks so, but then says "But I'm not going to try to stop you, or anything." And let's the black man die so he can maintain his friendships with the lynch mob members.

French_snack

Posted by French_snack 6 years ago Report

Interesting analogy. But lynch mobs were never legal. There was always significant opposition to them (even though a frightening number of people saw them as acceptable). Thus a man saving a lynch victim would be applauded by many. Whereas someone in Felarya snatching "food" from a person's hand would be met with widespread incomprehension and hostility. She would be seen as an "extremist". (See Prinny's character Nerissa, for example, who lost friends by doing that.)

(Remember also that Shelny' point is purely hypothetical. She is rooted to one spot, so she is literally unable to go around saving humans in any case. All she can do is offer protection to those who come to her. And that's what she does.)

On the matter of survival… Some Felaryan predators are highly skilled hunters, and could indeed change their diet without excessive difficulty. (Most fairies, for example, have no trouble finding food.) For others, it's more difficult. The giant elf Tarynn (who doesn't appear here) struggles every day to feed herself, and is perpetually skinny. Arguably, she *does* need to eat whatever she can find, including humans. The giantess Jora also has difficulty finding enough food - particularly now that she's raising a child. With her creator's agreement, I've described her in a recent story as getting worryingly skinny too. To a lesser extent, Milly isn't a particularly good huntress. Which is why she has a food garden. But for her protein intake, she eats whatever she can get.

So for some Felaryans, eating humans is purely a matter of enjoyment. For others, cutting humans, elves and nekos out of their diet completely would make their lives rather more complicated.

Regarding the parallel with vegetarians on Earth: In most developed countries, at least in cities and large towns, eating healthily on a vegetarian diet really isn't very difficult. Therefore people who do eat meat are doing so largely for pleasure, and inflicting tremendous amounts of suffering in the process. Felaryan predators who eat humans without *needing* to do the same. For some other characters (such as Jora), the *necessity* argument is a bit more hazy.

Ruler101

Posted by Ruler101 6 years ago Report

Well, the legal thing has got me there. However, they were pretty much de facto legal in some states.

And, in my analogy, I forgot to take into account that the Hypothetical white man can well.... Walk. :)

Well, they do again repeatedly say that most of them could stop without serious difficulty. I suppose I can't say that anyone who need's to do it is evil, though the enjoyment of prey's suffering is a different matter altogether....

Well, that is true. However , the same problem is posed here. The majority of them, at least those gathered here, admit that they eat purely for pleasure.

Though, I suppose this is impossible to truly argue because of the completely alien world it takes place in. Anyway , my main point is the idea that she avoids saving people (again, understandable , considering she can't walk) or even chastising others, to avoid losing friends. Though, I assume this is a lot more important for her kind because of this hive mind is thing? I'm not too knowledgable.

French_snack

Posted by French_snack 6 years ago Report

It's not exactly a hive mind. But dryads do share a strong telepathic and empathic link (which they can turn on or off as they wish). They can share thoughts with one another, but also their sense experiences.

Because she can't move, Shelny has only two ways of being with friends: if they come to her, or through the dryad link. If she started harassing people over their food habits, she would risk finding herself very lonely. A tribe of fairies spend a lot of time with her, but of course they would stop coming if she started being aggressive with them.

Ruler101

Posted by Ruler101 6 years ago Report

Ah, thank you for clearing that up.

Well, that all makes sense, but I'm of the opinion that one should be willing to suffer for what they consider right. Granted, I suppose that's not much coming from me, considering I've never actually had to do so (aside from some conversations about racism with my dumbass redneck classmates back in high school) so I suppose I don't actually know how Id act in such a situation. Either way, it all feels like trading lives for personal happiness.

Anyway, I have one other question. That other dryad said she moves right? Or did I read that wrong? Anyway, what I was going to ask was can all of them migrate, or do they get stuck somewhere if they stay there too long, or is it something else?

French_snack

Posted by French_snack 6 years ago Report

They can technically uproot themselves and migrate, but it's a slow and difficult process, and an uncomfortable one. So they generally don't do it. (Shelny has been rooted in one spot for centuries.)

Ruler101

Posted by Ruler101 6 years ago Report

Ah, thanks for clearing it up.

Anyway, one thing I did want to say, is that this seriously got me thinking of the ethics involved. Granted, I think I won't change my mind on what I thought coming in, but it actually DID challenge my views (which were, admittedly, a little one dimensional) unlike....certain people when discussing the ethical implications of vore.

French_snack

Posted by French_snack 6 years ago Report

Thanks! I'm glad. :)

Ruler101

Posted by Ruler101 6 years ago Report

No problem. I always enjoy a good moral dilemma :)

Ruler101

Posted by Ruler101 6 years ago Report

By the way,sorry if I seem aggressive or anything.

Shingami

Posted by Shingami 6 years ago Report

Very enjoyable story it really got me thinking

French_snack

Posted by French_snack 6 years ago Report

Thanks.

Krauser

Posted by Krauser 6 years ago Report

I was happy to see "Practical ethics 2" in my update feed, but I was even more happy when I read it. It covered such a wide spectrum of opinions and views and really gave each side of the argument power without leaning to one side too much. There's really not enough I can say about this story in a comment to tell you how good i think it is. In other words, I really REALLY liked this one.

French_snack

Posted by French_snack 6 years ago Report

Thank you! I tried to put myself in the mindset of each debater and make their points convincing from their perspective, so that they could each make a reasonably convincing case (on the basis of their initial premises). I'm glad you liked it!

Telhem

Posted by Telhem 2 years ago Report

Vore is a very unethical line of thought in and of itself. I've always been amazed to see the debates that come from works such as this and the previous story.

What amazes me the most is that this level of thought goes into a philosophical debate that is for all reasons imaginary.

French_snack

Posted by French_snack 2 years ago Report

Thanks - I think! :) It's very real to them, of course, and so the challenge was to project myself into these characters' minds, and allow their perspective to develop.

Telhem

Posted by Telhem 2 years ago Report

You completed that challenge masterfully.