Public Reason and Animal Rights
This book’s subject is animal politics, but we might do well to also consider two ways in which animals might be not part of politics but instead outside of politics, so that the very idea of an ‘animal politics’ is suspect, if not nonsensical. One way, a rather traditional way, is to see animals outside of politics because they really don’t have any interests that politics should properly be concerned with. Animals, on this view, belong to the private sphere and not the public sphere and what you do in the private sphere (and whom you to it to) is none of politics’ business. If animals are not part of politics in this way (they are private and not public matters of concern) then you can do whatever you want with animals: you can mistreat them, eat them, buy and sell them. Animals are private property, not subject to the state’s control.
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