We’ve been eating animals for hundreds of years. Now, that statement might well be correct. And in fact, consuming animal products may well be ingrained in our culture and our tradition, but does that make it morally justifiable to kill and eat an animal? Now, I think the best place to start with this argument is to apply that logic to a human situation. Now, female genital mutilation is undoubtedly a cultural practice, but by no means does that make it moral. In fact, in some cultures, it’s acceptable to treat a woman as less than a man. But would you consider that to be moral just because its traditional, or just because it’s cultural? Now, let’s apply that logic to another situation where it’s non-human animals having pain, suffering, and fear inflicted upon them. The Yulin dog meat festival and the Boknal dog meat festival are both annual events where tens of thousands of dogs and cats are butchered, killed, and eaten. Is it moral, therefore, to kill a dog and a cat because these festivals are part of the culture and tradition of those communities? And also, what about in Taiji in Japan where every year they slaughter dolphins? Or in the Faroe Islands, where every year they slaughter Pilot Whales? But if it’s not morally justifiable to kill a whale, a dolphin, a dog, and a cat even though doing so forms part of the community’s culture, how can it be moral for us to kill a cow, a pig, a chicken, a sheep, a fish, or any animal that we kill, and excuse it by saying it’s a part of our culture, a part of our tradition? The reality is, tradition and culture cements us in our past transgressions. The reason we have progressed as a society is because we’d looked at the actions that we were making, and we questioned whether or not they were moral and acceptable. The consumption of animal products, the exploitation of animals in general is wrong and immoral. And just because we have done these things for a long time, just because it forms part of our culture, and part of our tradition, does not make it morally justifiable. We have to look at the actions that we are making today collectively as a society but also as individuals, and question whether or not we can morally justify it. Does culture justify an action? Is female genital mutilation morally acceptable just because it’s cultural? Is killing a dog morally acceptable just because it’s traditional? If you answered no those questions, then you can’t possibly excuse raising and killing animals here in England or in the West with the excuse of tradition and culture. Because by your own logic, it doesn’t morally justify something just because we’ve done it for a long time.