A vegan diet results in more animal deaths than an omnivorous one.
That is the ludicrous conclusion of a 2003 paper by Steven Davis published in the Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics. A professor of animal science at Oregon State University, Davis based his argument on the theory that modern crop harvesting kills more animals than eating cows who grazed on pasture.
The animals who die for plant crops include mice, moles, rabbits, “and other creatures that are run over by tractors, or lose their habitat to make way for farming,” Davis contended.
This is just one of the many arguments that have been leveled against ethical veganism. Distinct from veganism motivated by health or environmental reasons, ethical veganism is premised on the belief that it is wrong to cause animals suffering and to take their lives. In this column, I want to review and refute two ethical arguments against veganism.