But we can go much further: does anyone, anywhere, believe that hens packed in tiny cages to lay eggs for us have a good or even tolerable life? Are these animals so robotically stupid that they have no idea what is happening to them? Of course not.
Cows, sheep, pigs, ducks, geese, rabbits. These are all animals who are exploited on farms for their milk, their eggs, their skin, their children, their flesh. Nobody, any longer, believes we do this for their sake. We do it for ours: for profit, for taste, for fun.
And, much as I hate to go there, what about dogs and cats? I love living with them and when they live with me and millions of people like me, they have a good life. But was it the life that nature intended them to live?
My dog Benjy would sometimes give me a look, when I gave him an order, that was part sadness, part defiance, part puzzlement: "Who are you to tell me what to do?" he seemed to say, and I felt shame.
We have evolved, possibly for the last 35,000 years, to be together and to enjoy being together, but is this the life Benjy evolved to live? Guide dogs, therapy dogs, hearing dogs - yes, they seem to love what they do, but is this enough grounds to justify what is, after all, a form of slavery?