1.      Singer is a utilitarian (=right acts maximize good consequences)

2.      Singer extending the notion of equality from black, women and gay liberation movements to animals

3.      What kind of equality applies to animals?

4.      Not identical treatment (equality does not imply same treatment)

         a.      Women right to abortion not entail men do

5.      Not factual equality

         a.      False as people are factually very different (ability to cook souffle)

         b.      Not everyone can be an Einstein or play the piano excellently

6.      Moral equality = equal consideration of interests

         a.      Good of any one individual no more important from point of view of universe than the good of any other individual

         b.      The significance of an interest does not depend on whose interest it is

                   i.       Interest of an octopus can’t be discounted relative to human’s interest because of the sort of creature it is

7.      Interests = something whose satisfaction makes the individual with the interests better off and its frustration makes them worse off

         a.      Pleasure and the avoidance of pain are generally in interests of sentient beings

8.      Different things cause pleasure and pain to different individuals

9.      Same pleasure (or pains) may not be of equal value                 

                   i.       (Ned: “pleasures or pains with the same name” may not be of equal value, they are not “the same” pleasure or pain)

          b.       *Pain of losing a mother is worse for a typical human than for a typical elephant

          c.       *Pain of noise pollution may be greater for a whale than for human

10.     Although difficult to calculate pleasures and pains across species (and Singer’s view requires we do this)

11.     Don’t need a sophisticated moral mathematics to see that much of what we do to animals harms them more than it benefits us

          a.       Pleasure of human eating foie gras (as opposed to eating veggie pate) is much less than the misery caused to the ducks force fed until their livers are so large can no longer move

12.     For Singer, McDonald’s or local zoo may well be the site of a major moral outrage

          a.       Such practices exist because we don’t consider interests of animals equally–we discount or ignoring their suffering entirely

          b.       Speciesism explains pervasiveness of our moral blindness in our treatment of animals

Study Questions on Jamieson on Singer

1.       Define “an interest.”

2.       What are Jamieson’s examples of pains and pleasures that may not be equal in humans and animals?

3.       What is Jamieson’s response to the criticism that it is difficult to calculate and determine the relative weight of pleasures/pains across species (and so utilitarianism can’t be practically implemented).