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Down a rabbit hole with predators and a philosopher

This paper seems meant to raise questions. Likely it does:

Painlessly Killing Predators,” Ben Bramble [pictured here], Journal of Applied Philosophy, epub 2020. (Thanks to Achim Reisdorf for bringing this to our attention.) The author explains:

“Animals suffer harms not only in human captivity but in the wild as well. Some of these latter harms are due to humans, but many of them are not. Consider, for example, the harms of predation, i.e. of being hunted, killed, and eaten by other animals. Should we intervene in nature to prevent these harms? In this article, I consider two possible ways in which we might do so: (1) by herbivorising predators (i.e. genetically modify them so that their offspring gradually evolve into herbivores) and (2) by painlessly killing predators. I argue that, among these options, painlessly killing predators would be preferable to herbivorising them. I then argue that painlessly killing predators, despite its costs to predators, might under certain circumstances be justifiable.”

Perhaps the best written sentence in the entire paper is:

“Suppose what I’ve had to say so far is right.”

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