This paper is a teaching tool which instructors of animal ethics may assign to students to help them evaluate those students’ most frequent arguments for the moral acceptability of eating meat. Specifically, the paper examines (and finds inadequate) the arguments that eating meat is morally acceptable because it is (1) historically widespread, (2) necessary, and (3) natural. The aim of discussing these arguments is to pave the way for a more fruitful and focused discussion of the canonical texts of the animal ethics literature.

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