Weekly Newsletter - January 20, 2016
From Christian Vegetarian Association (CVA)

  1. Advocating for Animals, part 1
  2. This Week’s Sermon from Rev. Frank and Mary Hoffman
  3. In Reply to a Prior Essay, Regarding Animal Souls
  4. Commentary about Heifer International

1. Advocating for Animals, part 1

How can we best advocate for animals, given that many people do prioritize animal protectionism over other values, such as taste, convenience, and status? Members of the animal protection movement disagree on this question, and the main fault line is between those who argue that we should seek gradual reforms and those who maintain that advocates should endorse only those programs and policies that abolish some or all forms of animal mistreatment.

For simplicity, I will refer to the two camps as “abolitionists” and “welfarists,” though, like most titles, these terms are not fully accurate. Many “welfarists” seek to end all animal mistreatment, and they believe that welfare reforms are effective means to this goal. Historically, animal protectionists have focused primarily on welfare reforms, but in the past few years the “abolitionist” camp has been gaining ground, particularly among animal rights proponents.

Over the next few weeks, I will consider arguments and counter-arguments made by both sides. Abolitionists frequently claim that campaigns for animal welfare reform has failed, because animal abuse has increased steadily over the past decades. Welfarists might respond that we don’t know whether things would have been better or worse if they had taken a different approach. There are many factors contributing to animal abuse, and the importance of the animal protection movement will likely remain limited as long as animal advocates are a small fraction of the populace.

Next week, I will consider the argument that advocating for welfare reforms implicitly endorses animal mistreatment.

Stephen R. Kaufman, M.D.


2. This Week’s Sermon from Rev. Frank and Mary Hoffman

Discerning Godly Lifestyles


3. In Reply to a Prior Essay, Regarding Animal Souls

The Bible does state that animals do have a soul. If you look into the Catholic Church's history during the Council of Nicea there was a big debate amongst the Romans about whether women and animals could have souls or not. After a long discussion they decided that women had souls but animals didn't. Nowhere in the Bible does it say animals don't have souls. On the contrary, in the Hebrew Torah (not in the updated Western edited Bibles) it says the following:

Deuteronomy 12:23: Only beware of this, that thou eat not the blood, for the blood is for the soul: and therefore thou must not eat the soul with the flesh.

In newer Bibles they mistranslate the Hebrew word for "soul" into "life."

Ravi


4. Commentary about Heifer International

Animal advocate Martha Rosenberg shows flaws in this “feel good” charity: Read Many Questions About this Live Animal Charity.


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