Last week in England, a labor court ruled that veganism is “a philosophical belief or way of life.” As such, it must be protected under the U.K. Equality Act. This was the result of a job layoff considered discriminatory, which the defendant attributes to his firm vegan convictions.
As it was a labor court, the El Pais article I read on the topic mentions possible implications of the ruling: What if a cashier at a supermarket refuses to ring up meat products for the customer? My imagination flew and I thought: What if a worker at a processing plant refuses to cut a chicken's neck? Machines can perform that work, although someone can refuse to turn on the machine.
The defenders of this case speak of a “culture of respect for the convictions of the employees when performing their work.” It makes me wonder, if they don't want the misfortune that undermines their convictions, why did they choose to work there? For example, I would never be a car mechanic, because I know nothing about nor do I like mechanics! But we need car mechanics! And, there are so many other things I don't like or agree with. But what about the convictions, or hunger, of those who want meat or buy meat?
Animal production cannot compete with a “philosophical belief.” Nor vice versa. Let me explain myself. I believe in freedom of beliefs, but it can be an invasion of one's freedom when the fundamentalism of others gets in the way. I don’t believe in proselytizing and asking at all costs not to produce or consume meat, or eggs, or leather, or milk or honey.
Rights of non-human animals. I wonder where the rights of human "animals" are. And I wonder where is the duty and responsibility of producing foods? Those who profess to be filled with tolerance and friendliness end up being intolerant and ignoring what others want.
What do you think?