vegan is anti-speciesism is anti-civ

caveman & woman

Contrary to the predatory man-the-hunter myth, hominids have innate empathy and cooperativeness that manifests idiosyncratically in civilization. One such manifestation is veganism, whose central focus is the abstention from needless exploitation of animals. But, conventional anarcho-primitivist pigeonholing of veganism into a consumerist schema has distorted its authentic essence, oversimplifying, distorting, and denouncing it. {Ironically, in practice it is the trending ‘paleo’ primitivist ideologues who engage in more destructive consumerism than even consumerist vegans, and of whom there is a void of  conventional primitivist confrontation.} Veganism’s supporting principle is liberation of all animals, with its opposite being human supremacy over all other animals, or speciesism. Innate empathy and cooperation, combined with drive for liberation of all, beckons shifting the nature of humanimal-nonhumanimal relationships from domination and domestication to deferential and symbiotic. Therein veganism fundamentally becomes an anti-speciesist viewpoint concerned not only with bred ‘pet’ & ‘food’ animals and captive wildlife, but feral wildlife worldwide. This translates into vegan/anti-speciesist deeds like releasing imprisoned animals and protecting forests from consumeristic exploitation of fauna habitat.

Civilization has proven itself to be an ecologically destructive force, leaving all animals and all biotic-abiotic communities damaged and doomed. The repeated, hard-to-accept lesson is that civilization is the cause of the problem, and cannot be the cure. Hopes for techno-saviors have been repeatedly dashed, often causing further harm with unintended consequences. This is the merging point of speciesism and civilization premises. They are conjoined twins, born together on the artifices of hierarchy and oppression, with maddening successions of human harms along civilization’s catastrophic trek. They will be intrinsically eternally unified until their death, whether through intentional dismantling, unintentional collapse, or a combination. The conjoined counter approach calls for actions such as destroying apparatuses of totalitarian control, undoing oppression, rewilding native habitats, and rewilding self.

A word must be said to those seeking to discover and reawaken origins, striving for a future primitive. The sect of primitivism focused on ‘hunter-gatherism’ (my term) is plagued with patriarchy. Here’s an exercise to visually demonstrate the point: In your mind google ‘caveman’. Compare those images to a google of ‘cavewoman’. Scientific studies, interpretations on early humans and evolutionary narratives, from which anprims extract information to depict the primitive lifeway, are profoundly value-laden. Origin narratives are created, not objectively described realities. Hunter-gatherism naturalizes patriarchy by projecting it into our species’ origins. Alternative narratives countering civilization’s values, such as ‘vegan primitivism’, tend to be silenced, scorned and sternly denied before due consideration. These oppressive dynamics are countered by conscientiously seeking a broader ancestral life narrative, undermining the values behind patriarchy, and rejecting the rigidity of the evolutionary normative.

Sometimes wording means much. Foraging was the mainstay of most ancestral diets, and a common female specialist activity as sex roles increasingly diverged after the advent of hunting. Many woman never participated in methodical hunting. There were swaths of time with no human hunting or foraging animals at all. Humans mainly subsisted off  foraged plants, etc., especially before the systematic use of controlled fire. Yet, the term ‘hunter-gatherer’ is the generally accepted norm connoting the early human foodway. The term ‘forager’ would more accurately reflect the lived egalitarian experience of the vast majority of early humans. Another exercise: Imagine you had been born into a world where all humans had a plant diet. Would you have an impulse to bring back hunter-gatherism, or would you put that in a category similar to other early ‘natural’ doings, like cannibalism, or rape, or infanticide? Cherry-picking an animal-based diet from diverse past diets because you have been enculturated to prefer it, and regardless of environmental impact, is the mindset that led toward devastating civilization to begin with.

Earth needs an intuitive yet smart approach from fighting yet giving humans today. Adapting anti-civ, anti-speciesist veganism in today’s degraded wild world calls for an adaptation in our bio-culture that protects remaining habitats, ends causes of civilization’s harms, and helps heal Earth. If a highlight of our species is our ability to adapt to our environment, may we select ways from our origins that enrich an ever-thriving wild future.

Read the title again. The logic works in reverse as well.

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