Very fun thread this, I must say! Regrettably I feel as though not a single person has been able to appropriately grasp, and put forward an informed rebuttal to my last contribution to this thread. I'm unsure if this is due to my own falter in translation from thought to text, or if it is a failure on the part of the reader for not being able to grasp a situation outside of their own preconceived world-view. Lets start with a walk-through of my thought experiment: the point was that it is entirely morally justifiable. I never made a point against this fact, as I fully realised that consent on the part of the patient would allow for this under the moral system that proponents of the "animals are humans, too" doctrine would demand. If your moral system says that killing is bad, and if letting a drug go to market that kills a percentage of people with informed consent can be construed as a good thing due to the direct benefits to those whom it works for, then your initial moral of "killing is bad" therefore isn't specifically true. People were killed, but it was still moral. This is not incongruous with any of the moral systems that have been put forth; this is just a fact of daily life, and of informed consent. It is good to see that the main part of my argument that most people picked up on was my insinuation that we need meat in our diets. However, I would like to point out the many qualifiers present within the statement. I never intended to mean that you or I absolutely require meat with our veg - there are ways around it in western culture for those healthy individuals whom can not only afford it, but can appropriately digest it. As has been so aptly brought up by Nexxo: what about the baby in Darfur? Can her parents afford to have various legumes, grains, and other exotic vegetables imported? We don't live in a perfect world, and it is rather off-putting when other people argue morals for those that cannot enjoy imported tea on their verandas. There is also a massive industry formed around animal by-products that would be rather difficult to adapt to the lack thereof, even in western culture. I was honestly going to make a nice little list right here of a few good examples, but my biochemistry isn't as up to date as it could be, and the list is so numerous of animal by-products as to fill a novel in and of itself. So just trust me on this, animals are in absolutely everything. To touch specifically on spec's disagreement with the simple statement I was able to construct from his own - "morals can be right, even when they're momentarily wrong" - I will admit that you never specifically said as such. Regrettably I cannot find the post to which I want to refer, and I do apologise if it is not you I am attempting to debase the moral system of. However, the argument was as such: although the act of killing is immoral (or "wrong"), if situationally justifiable, one can be said the be acting as though morally justified. A specific moral is wrong at all times, irrespective of the reasons (the ends do not justify the means and all that), unless not doing so would lead to another, arguably worse, immoral act, right? A dicto simpliciter ad dictum secundum quid. As a student of philosophy you should know better. Philosophy underpins the majority of our existence in the western world. Without philosophy we could justify almost none of our science, morality, or politics. I used to liken philosophy to masturbation - satisfying but ultimately meaningless. Then I studied it formally. Now I realise that philosophy underpins our society, our technology, and our science, whether we realise it or not. This is exactly as the instructor would have wanted: make yourself feel as though an integral part of society by seeing a job everywhere. This is ok, as it is done with every form of higher-education. Strictly speaking, a designer is not needed for a building to be furnished, but they do make things a bit nicer looking. As a student of philosophy, I view philosophy as a way to make people feel as though they're important for the very reasons they're not. Philosophers use conjecture in a world of which they don't exist, and push themselves into positions to make decisions without a good concept of the real world. They're a leach within the intellectual world, hence why I chose to govern my schooling towards the religious side of things, as it is rather fun to see how a compromised human brain tends to work. This all being said, I'd never get within fifty yards of a job requiring me to utilize directly the skills or knowledge I'm paying rather a lot for. On the note of confessions though I feel it apt to give my argument some further point of reference as to the source: I very rarely eat meat, and shy away from animal products. Not for any moral reasons, but mainly practical. Vegetables, fruits and grains constitute the majority of my diet, with only a small meat dish once or twice a week. This is purely out of practicality: meat is expensive, and I do not directly require it in my diet on a daily basis, though I would do rather a lot of damage to myself if I didn't eat at least a little (no amount of estrogen-rich soy-milk will ever benefit somebody who trains seven days a week, several hours a day). As to animal products: there are rather a lot of suitable alternatives that are typically cheaper, so they're the ones I get. No ******** morals, no issues with seeing little Bubbles the cow die, just practicality. Though there is something to say about killing your own wild chicken, cleaning it and cooking it! Very yum.