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Are humans more important than animals?

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I don't think so. Every species is interlinked with every other species. In that sense, no one species is more important than any other. We all need all of us.

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I just think it's rude to pull the "shouldn't you be donating to humans?" card when someone is donating to help endangered animals and animal shelters. As long as they're donating towards a good cause, why are you getting picky? Go donate to help humans, since they are so very important to you, and let people donate towards things they believe in and support. It's a good thing either way. Don't criticize someone or get picky about their good actions.

Imagine donating some money to a homeless man in america and someone comes up to you like "shouldn't be donating to homeless people in africa? they have it way worse. 😕"
It's low, and unnecessary. Help is help. On an individual level, every person and every animal deserves a better quality of life if it can be provided.

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3 minutes ago, Vickery said:

I just think it's rude to pull the "shouldn't you be donating to humans?" card when someone is donating to help endangered animals and animal shelters. As long as they're donating towards a good cause, why are you getting picky? Go donate to help humans, since they are so very important to you, and let people donate towards things they believe in and support. It's a good thing either way. Don't criticize someone or get picky about their good actions.

Imagine donating some money to a homeless man in america and someone comes up to you like "shouldn't be donating to homeless people in africa? they have it way worse. 😕"
It's low, and unnecessary. Help is help. On an individual level, every person and every animal deserves a better quality of life if it can be provided.

 

Absolutely - I totally agree. The attitude taken by the OP was just asking to upset someone. I actually have monthly direct payments set up to two HUMAN charities, and I buy food for beggars on the street when I have the chance.. Just saying that they are NOT "more important" than animal charities, and humans are not "more important" than animals.. But giving is giving and is a good thing - though I have to say I do buy into "give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for life".

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I think the answer is yes. Here's why:

 

Over history there is a lot proof that humans have impacts on just about everything...number of species, temperature, gas ratios, pollution, chemicals released into the environment. We are at a point where, whether we like it or not, humans have the power to save or destroy whatever they want, whether it may be intentional or not. Right now, humans might as well be the apex species and/or keystone species for the entire planet -- it wouldn't take much for humans to undo centuries and millenia of "natural" cycles and processes. Outside of Earth, humans are still a force to be reckoned with, I bet.

 

Not to mention, I don't think there is any other species on the planet that could survive in as many circumstances as humans. As much as I don't like it, humans will continue to exist even if most of the ecosystem is wiped out. Humans are incredibly adaptable and use technology to overcome some of the most challenging situations known.

 

So that's why I think humans are important than other species. Not for any opinion reason, but because they just have so much power. They can't be ignored.

 

On a less related note, I think the idea of "importance" is also a human-made concept. I don't think many species have that idea, so it will always be biased. The question "is X more important" really depends on context. More important for survival of the planet? More important as a mammal? The way I answered this question is more focused on the planet and its sustainability, which I think is probably the most valuable thing known in the universe at present.

Edited by Ashywolf

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On 11/17/2010 at 11:43 AM, grimace said:

Well, from a purely scientific standpoint, animals are more important, seeing as if they suddenly all died, humans would die as well,

 

I don't understand your reasoning?  Why would all the humans die?  We are omniverous and would survive on vegetation if we had to, wouldn't we?  Many people survive now as total Vegans... 

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Vegetation might well not survive if we were the only animal left. Bees to pollinate; various species' dung to fertilise, all sorts to eat other things that would have kept down infestations.

 

Vegans actually ought to think about the work of all those bees.....

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I think this is getting too global. We have to think about people and animals as individuals as well, not just look at the global/bigger picture. For example, if I (a human) were to be murdered by somebody, it wouldn't really have an impact on the environment or anything. Life would go on for the rest of humanity as well. I'm just one person and I don't have a huge impact on such a big planet.
That doesn't mean it's okay to murder me, though, does it?

Similarly, if earth were to be completely destroyed tomorrow, the rest of the universe would be fine. Planets get destroyed all the time. That doesn't mean we should be going around trying to reduce the earth to dust because it doesn't matter to the rest of the universe.

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On 1/25/2019 at 10:24 PM, Husky51 said:

 

I don't understand your reasoning?  Why would all the humans die?  We are omniverous and would survive on vegetation if we had to, wouldn't we?  Many people survive now as total Vegans... 

The environment 100% requires animals to function, at least on the level of something to support large mammals like us.

Remember with all animals gone you'd have fun issues like absolutely no pollinators, nothing to help break down forest floor debris, mass amounts of algae strangling out the ocean while dinoflagelates make the whole thing toxic, and a million other reasons.

 

Plants wouldn't die out entirely without animals, but most of them would, and the ones that didn't would be around mostly from fungi helping out.

 

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As with many things, it's not a simple "yes/no" answer.

 

1:1 if you put a person I loved against an animal I loved, I'd save the person. Animals are incredible, wonderful, amazing things. I work at a zoo doing conservation programming. I want nothing more to protect them. But with that being said, a great human has far more impact on making the world a better place than a great animal ever can, and I think most of us know that.

 

That being said, many humans are NOT great. While I donate to charities on both sides of the fence, by and large I support animal charities over human ones, for a few reasons. The first is that humans have a lot more power to change their lives than animals do. A dog stuck in a cage being bred for endless puppies has no capacity to break out, inspire other dogs to join its cause, and overthrow its oppressors. Humans DO have that power, even if, obviously, it is far from an easy process. Human history is a chronicle of humans fighting their oppressors to better human lives. That's not something animals can do for themselves. Beyond that, though, a lot of humans are just garbage. Animals do things that are awful by human standards, certainly, even the intelligent ones, but even a dolphin killing a calf or a chimp beating up another one doesn't have the same level of awareness and depravity of humans inventing tortures and butchering children. Obviously that's the extreme end, but there's also a lot of low level garbage of people just being rude, manipulative, mean, refusing to use their brains, not caring one iota about anyone but themselves. There's a Mark Twain quote that has long stuck with me: "If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous he will not bite you. This is the principal difference between a dog and man.” So while again, I DO help humans, and do care about human suffering, generally I'd rather support animals (who do little harm, and don't fully understand when they do) then people (who can and do do great harm, and understand when they do).

 

So there's my shades of gray answer. Whatever people ascribe to, though, I hope everyone can see that reducing suffering on both sides is important and a good thing to do. Just because you think humans are more important doesn't mean animals being beaten and starved to death isn't a bad thing. If you criticize people for only donating to whatever cause you think is *most important,* you're alienating most of the world. It's like when people say "don't whine about X, think about how bad starving people in Africa have it!" While it can bear to remember most of us have it pretty good, telling people they only have the right to complain if they're at the very bottom of the barrel means that by all rights only the worst person in all 7 billion of us has any right to complain, which as I hope we can see would be... very silly.

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