Ben wrote:I'm wondering how many people know about the disturbing fact that in many countries, the vast majority of calves born to diary cows are slaughtered at less than five days of age. Knowing this, and that demand for milk perpetuates the intense suffering of diary cattle, is it still ethical to consume diary products?
I am glad to see you are now promoting such a logic.
I would raise another question: is it absolutely necessary to make cattle suffer beyond limits in order to produce milk? If the answer is affirmative, then it is clearly unethical. If not, the answer is not so clear, because IMO we are not responsible for the wrong choices of the farm industry, and of all those who pressure it to produce at low cost, no matter what it means for the cattle. But we then we would have to make genuine effort to consume milk that is produced without making cattle suffer, as far as it can be found. In case it is possible to get milk without cruelty, due to the fact that the cow may produce more than the calf's need, then I think it was okay in traditional societies such as at the time of the Buddha, because bulls were raised to plough fields, so they did not become useless.
That said, given the fact that dairy products are not necessary in our diet, and can even be a problem, it seems more logical to avoid them altogether, for all those reasons.