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Everything posted by SiNa94

  1. I'm actually trying to plan a short cruise on a budget for spring break. Haven't been on one before. Sounds like a lot of fun. Unfortunately, our spring break is toward the end of March so this particular cruise won't work (out of my price range, besides). I've picked out a cheap room on a Carnival cruise from LA to Ensenda, Mexico. If I convince someone to go with me I can pay the double occupancy rates... then it'll cost me about $600 round trip (including train tickets from Portland to LA) before all of the fees and surcharges I'm sure they throw in. For all of you experienced cruisers... how much should I expect to spend? Meals are supposedly included with that price... but I'm sure there are all kinds of restrictions. What can I actually expect to be included in that price as far as food and such? What about entertainment and such... are the shows (music, etc.) typically included in the price... or do they charge extra once they've got you trapped out at sea? It's a 4 day cruise and I was planning on budgeting about $400 for spending money (drinks, shopping, on shore excursions, etc.). Is this a reasonable amount? Or should I expect to pay more than that ($100 a day)? I can be pretty conservative with my money... but I also want to have fun.
  2. Well... if anyone has any good black and white pictures of their cats...
  3. Hey! Okay... I totally redesigned the website. There are still some bugs to work out... but it should work much better for everybody now. http://www.samsaramagazineofpoetry.com
  4. Wow. That is an intense resolution. I'll play around with it, but doubt I'll be able to do much. A lot of the extra little things rely on absolute positioning so that they'll be higher on the page, but won't slow the loading of important content. I'll see what I can do. And I hope you got my critique! I really like what you've got going on in "My Midsummer's Night Dream". Hopefully my suggestions will spark something in your mind. I'd really like you to revise it and submit again.
  5. Thanks for the submission... I'll take a look at it ASAP. Could you send a screenshot from your computer (alt+print screen, and copy into paint or other image editing software)? I know on my wide screen there's a blank space on the right side, but don't know if this is what you're talking about.
  6. And now I have an official website for the whole project: http://www.samsaramagazineofpoetry.com.
  7. Here's the mock up of the cover that I've put together... just to give you a taste of what I'm thinking:
  8. Black and white, first of all. As far as subject matter goes... anything really goes. But, it should be a unique subject or perspective on that subject. Sunsets are pretty typical of photography, so unless you managed a really unique perspective, a picture of a sunset probably wouldn't be accepted. And yeah, as Richard said, something poetic. At the moment, I'm using this photo for the mock up of the cover, but I don't have the rights to it. Just an example of the kind of thing I might be looking for. Here are examples of photos used on the lit magazine I edit for school. Those are also good examples. I'll post an example of the cover in a jiffy...
  9. That'd be great. I was in a poetry workshop last term. I'll probably be in another one next term too... no poetry this term though.
  10. Hey everybody! I know I haven't been around much, but I wanted to drop by and let everyone know what I'm up to. First of all: I got a food processor and am now trying to eat more raw food. That's not going quite as well as I'd planned, but it's a work in progress. I'm also trying to find a gym buddy. I absolutely LOATHE going to the gym by myself... and now my arms are puny compared to what they were when I was still doing farm work. And now, I'm working on publishing a magazine of poetry. Whether or not it gets published is largely dependent on whether or not I get enough quality submissions. So, I thought I'd check in with my vegan bodybuilding friends and see if any of you are also poets or photographers? I'd love submissions of poetry or cover art from all of you! You can get more info on my mag and submission guidelines from my forum post on deviantArt.
  11. I've been away from the forums for so long it seems! Between schoolwork and computer issues, I just haven't made it around. It's great to see everyone's progress though! Thanks Zack! I'm astonished too. I finally got new clothes just before school started (about a month ago)... and the pants I got were 6 inches smaller in the waist than the pants I was wearing. And a month later, they're already starting to feel a little loose (although... all of the vegan cupcakes I've been making will help slow that process I'm sure). o_0
  12. Yeah... there are some on etsy.com that are made out of old basketballs, tires, etc... but they don't sell the straps separately, and I really don't care for the watch faces they provide with them (especially considering the price). Web searches have provided little of use so far...
  13. I want one of those wide watch straps along the lines of this, except without the dead animal bits. I've seen pleather watch straps (very few, but I've seen them)... but not wide ones like that. Somebody has to make them. Anybody know?
  14. Time for new goals and a new log. I honestly haven't been exercising all that much recently (especially not since the fitness contest ended) and I'm done with my work out at the farm (which was a great work out). I feel like crap, and all of that muscle growth I'd seen over the past few months is disappearing. It took me about 14 months or so to lose 95ish pounds... and I have no fear of it coming back. But... now I'm shooting to get down to 170 (the upper part of the range for my ideal body weight) and get my upper body toned. I'm going for a nice long walk as soon as I post this and as soon as school starts (in a couple of weeks) I'll be finding someone to go to the gym with (or should I say, to force me to go to the gym). Let's do this!
  15. Haha... same here. "Come on you stupid... What are you? Some kind of failure? Just do it already!" Hahaha....
  16. And I appreciate the lively debate as well, as frustrating as it has been at times. Perhaps we should get back to the original topic however, as it isn't a thread about what Singer thinks, but about what we think on a very specific issue.
  17. I'm glad that you appreciate my posts, but you missed the point of my last one entirely. I don't think you understand how exactly philosophers work. They don't work to take something complicated and make it simple; they work to make something simple and make it complicated. As I already said, and perhaps worded in a confusing way, death and killing are not being argued against in Animal Liberation. That does not mean that Singer agrees with them. Philosophers are taught only to argue only for that which they can fully defend with logic alone, without emotion. Singer states that trying to argue against something as complicated as death in such a small amount of writing would be difficult to defend as entirely as it needed to be. This books argues against suffering alone, but that doesn't mean Singer has no opinion about killing and death. This book is 248 pages in and of itself. I imagine a book on such a complicated matter as killing would be at least 5 times that, because first he'd have to explain why killing humans is wrong in such a way that people could not object. Then he'd have to explain why killing humans to put them out of their misery is wrong, because that's part of killing. But does anyone really believe that it's better to let someone suffer in pain and disfigurement (after surviving a bomb blast perhaps) than just putting them out of their misery? If so, they are the one that is cruel. And that's what Singer means by death being complicated. Killing is not universally accepted as being immoral because there are instances where we believe it is right (self-defense, and end to suffering, etc. depending on the person). Good philosophers don't pretend to know everything. They only know what they know. You can't argue a "gut-reaction" or "emotional response". You're taking this open-endedness to mean that he agrees with things that he doesn't, or at least doesn't any more. Not all cage-free eggs come from shed operations... I know, because I work at a farm that I wish would strictly grow vegetables, but the owners won't budge. While those chickens are exploited, they don't suffer. In fact, they have it quite good: a warm place to sleep, an acre or more to run around on, treats when there are food scraps, protection from wild animals, etc. I know I'm certainly not prepared to right a book on why exploitation is wrong, but that doesn't mean I don't believe it. So far I have: Exploitation is stealing and stealing is wrong. That's simply not book material. I'd have to explain to the general populace by stealing from animals is the same from stealing from humans. That's a matter that isn't easily argued in a logical manner that will actually convince people that regularly exploit animals. I'll finish with Singers exact words:
  18. I haven't read, or at least read thoroughly, the other pieces you've quoted here, but this particular quote sounded familiar, and completely taken out of it's original context. If you would have continued with the rest of the paragraph (on page 175 for those of us with the newest edition) it would have gone something like this: This last line is the necessary disclaimer that you conveniently forgot in order to make your point. If you recall from the beginning of the book, Singer says that because in the field of philosophy killing and death are such complicated matters that haven't even been settled with respect to humans, it would be impractical to tackle it in the context of animals. This particular books focuses solely on the suffering of animals. Because none of the evidence he'd provided in the book had set up the possibility to argue against the consumption of eggs, he could not argue that the consumption of eggs in which it does not appear any animals are suffering is morally wrong. He said that the readers themselves would have to decide without his help whether killing was wrong or not. I can guess at the context for the other quotes, because I'm sure what you're quoting is a little biased against Singer. If somebody came to Singer and told him that they've stopped eating animal products three days a week he would not scorn them. He would congratulate them for being able to accomplish such a major lifestyle change because no matter how small it may be in comparison what other people are doing, fewer animals ARE suffering because of that persons actions. That's why an all-or-nothing mentality is a negative influence on the movement. If we tell people that they may as well not bother if they're not going to go all of the way, then we're losing chances to minimize suffering.
  19. Singer does not agree with animal exploitation, and I don't know where you came up with that. Singer is a Utilitarian, and as such believes that utility should be maximized, or, as he often puts it, suffering should be minimized. If you are exploiting an animal, then you are causing it to suffer, and that Singer doesn't agree with. What you may be confused about is when there is more than one life hanging in the balance. Singer says that if sacrificing one dog to a medical experiment could guarantee (which they rarely can) that you're going to save thousands of lives from a debilitating and life-threatening disease, then of course you should go through with it. You're causing suffering to only one being rather than to thousands (i.e. You're minimizing suffering). Singer doesn't show prejudice. He says that if a building was on fire and your child is in one room, but 20 children are in another room, and you can only make it to one of the rooms, you should save the 20 children. He does concede that most people wouldn't be able to make that choice however.
  20. Singer says it would be illogical to talk about animal rights, A) because he doesn't believe in rights at all (not even for humans) and B) because to talk about an animals right to vote or some other such thing doesn't make sense because the animal is not CAPABLE of that. What Singer argues for is equal consideration. Humans and nonhumans have different desires. What a human wants on a hot day is a nice air-conditioned room and a popsicle. What a pig wants is a mud bath. If we wanted to consider the pig equally with humans, we wouldn't give it an air conditioned room and a popsicle, we'd give it a mud bath so it could control it's body's temperature like it wants to. Another example is, if you swat a human baby and a grown horse with equal force, it's going to hurt the baby more than it's going to hurt the horse because the horse's hide is thicker. An equal amount of something doesn't result in an equal amount of pain or pleasure. People have attacked Singer because of his view. I believe he said a retarded child did not have rights, which is the same thing he thinks about every other organism, retarded or not. Of course, his statement was misconstrued as an attack on the mentally handicapped, and so he was attacked, or received death threats, or something of that nature. I don't remember the exact details. In the newest edition of Animal Liberation Singer says: Rights aren't necessary for Animal Liberation. Saying "rights" is simply more convenient than trying to sum up what he really means in an interview. He wouldn't get a chance to make a point if he had to spend the entire interview explaining his philosophy. You can thank Richard for that... he's the one that recommended it. By the way Richard, I wanted to thank you for raising a very reasonable objection to my argument. Unfortunately, I guess it's something that we can't resolve without actually having a discussion with those hunting groups. o_0
  21. Yes. Those were my words. That's the point I'm trying to make. That wasn't a statement about you, it was a caution to vegans against taking an off-putting approach that some religious organizations have. It isn't that vegans do that, as a whole, or even as individuals... but there are those that think those things about vegans, and it only takes one person actually acting that way to ruin it for everyone. It was never, at least intentionally, an attack against you or vegans in general. And that last bit was in response to the condescending tone your writing appears to be taking. My apologies if your writing is coming across stronger than you intended it to, but it has seemed ever since your first post that rather than discussing the idea you just wanted to bash the idea and my sense of veganism. Finally, veganism is a philosophy about what you do, not about what you think. People are vegans for any number of reasons, and they have differently philosophies that led them to veganism. That's why people like Peter Singer and Tom Reagan can arrive at the same conclusion, but completely disagree about the journey. Again, my apologies for defending myself from what appeared to be a personal attack. As I believe Joseph Williams said, an authors "ethos" or the way they portray their self in their writing can cause readers to have unexpected reactions to the piece in question when, if worded differently, they would have agreed with the argument whole-heartedly.
  22. HAHAHA! Actually, I think you've got it pretty spot on. But I just think that a message like that coming from an unlikely source would get people to think. Just like in Peaceable Kingdom, where it's people that have raised and slaughtered animals saying factory farming is wrong... it's pretty powerful. Although... all of those people are now vegan... so there is a slight difference.
  23. True. Your exaggeration makes a good point. Because most of the people I personally know that I'm basing this argument off of have also grown up around traditional farming methods, they would probably be appalled by factory farms if they were educated about them (I personally haven't been back to my hometown to do any educating). I do have a preconception of hunting stemming from the more rural parts of the world, but given that not all hunters are from rural areas, it is very likely that many more would be much more cold-hearted than I've taken into account. I think the biggest idea that I'm trying to put forth is that they would help us fight factory farms because they don't rely on them for meat (at least in my experience) and so that we would help them achieve some neutral goal that they want to achieve, like wildlife conservation for example, or funding for gun safety classes, or something to that effect that doesn't actually include the actual hunting of an animal.
  24. To Richard, my belief stems from growing up in a small community where nearly everyone hunted (and I've been given the same impression of the people I've met here at university that hunt). It isn't that they feel killing is wrong, which is one area where our two groups would disagree, but that they believe the kill should be as quick and painless as possible. They aren't going to shoot the animal several times in areas where it's going to die slowly by bleeding to death. Does that make it alright? No. But it does point to a certain respect they have towards animals. It's much like tribal groups that give thanks for the animals that they kill. They feel a real connection to the animal, never take more than they need, and try to be as efficient as possible. I understand that this could be atypical. Although, I'm under the impression that hunting is usually something passed down by family members, and not something handed down by sports hunters to the general population as Guest is suggesting with the so-called books that define hunting. And it's not as if I'm giving hunters free range, if that's how it appears. I have certainly told them that it is unacceptable. And we're still not any less friends because they kill animals and I don't agree with it. Hell, I've had people tell me that they were going to buy meat but couldn't because I was there and they new I wouldn't approve. They certainly know my opinion. (Maybe I should go on more hunting trips... maybe people wouldn't be able to kill animals because I "was there and wouldn't approve") And to Guest, you are perfectly right in saying that Peter Singer doesn't believe in rights. That's why I've tried to be careful about how I was using that word, and as you may have noticed, I've put it in quotes many times. Saying "rights" is convenient because spelling out such a long-winded philosophy, or saying "animal rights activists, and animal welfare activists, and animal consideration activist, and "humane" meat activists, etc." would be annoying and distracting. And furthermore, I came to the conclusion that there isn't really any such thing as rights fully independent of Singer. What I mean is, "rights" is HUMAN concept thought up by "great thinkers" ages ago. It has never been used for any pure good. "Rights" is a way to segregate people. Men have rights, but not women. Whites have rights, but not colored people. Adults have rights, but not children. And you have no rights in schools or federal buildings. Or if your government decides it's too risky for you to have a "right" at any given time. Rights will always be used to put one group ahead of another. What I argue is that we have obligations, not rights. Rights is a human concept. Obligations is a natural concept. A mother cat has an obligation to feed her young, just as humans have obligations to feed their young, and yes, it is for ultimately utilitarian reasons. Correction: it is a unification that is being proposed. In this country at least, minorities don't win votes. Vegans are a minority. If we further split ourselves up by only looking at one facet of animal rights that is of interest to us (factory farming, fur, experimentation, hunting, crush videos, beastiality, you name it)... then we guarantee that we win no votes for the better treatment of animals. Even if we we all unified against a single cause, we're STILL a minority, and the chances of getting any legislation passed is slim. We need the help of people from outside the vegan community that agree with us on at least specific points to help us get legislation passed. Even I didn't go vegan overnight. I was lacto-ovo vegetarian for 2 weeks prior to going vegan. Your approach is basically asking for a miracle. I want to get rid of as much suffering as possible as quickly as possible, and since factory farms are responsible for billions of deaths and countless suffering every year, I don't think it's unreasonable to unite against them first and foremost. For everything else, there are your own personal actions, such as not buying cosmetics tested on animals, etc. Explain to me how acting totalitarian, militant, and morally-superior are GOOD for the movement. Religious zealots are what have turned me, as well as many other people I know, off from religion. Maybe if you're Hitler you can unite an entire country in veganism by telling them it's the only way to kill the Jews, but if you're not, I don't see how getting in people's faces, cursing them because they eat meat, vandalizing their property, etc. is going to make them have a lot of respect for the vegan movement. Instead, it's going to give them plenty of good reasons to be wary of it. It's just like your stereotypical "never shuts up in class" kid... even if they have something good to say, everyone is so sick of their voice and the fact that they never get a chance to have their opinion heard that they don't care. People already tend to be wary of the unknown, and if we present ourselves as respectable people that are good company, we're breaking down that fear of the unknown. I haven't had time to read your article, and perhaps your own philosophy will make more sense in that context. I'll get to it when I can. But, judging by some of what you've said here, it seems as if you could be the type of person that goes off on people about their food choices at a moments notice. If you think that attitude is going to win people over, you are sadly mistaken. I could be wrong about you though, but your argument seems to hint at that.
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