An Ethical Dilemma

An Ethical Dilemma

IMG_7471-0I went crabbing with my dad & brother this morning! We’ve been going crabbing for as long as I can remember. It’s in my blood & probably one of my favorite things to do. There are lots of different methods to catch them. Back when we had our boat in a marina, we would leave cages in the water for a bit and it was simple as that. We’ve since sold our boat and rent a little one now instead to go from piling to piling using the ‘scoop method’… you literally just scoop the crabs off pilings or the bottom of the river (hence why we need to go at low tide). There’s a special technique to catching them that I’ve got down pat. I’m quite the master crabber since I’ve been doing it all my life 🙂IMG_7473-0

Crabs on crabs. We caught about 4 dozen.

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The houses on the Navesink River are gorgeous.

However, as I continue transitioning to a totally plant-based diet, I couldn’t help but feel some conflict inside me while scooping up crabs this morning. When I was younger, I always felt bad suffocating them by leaving them in a bucket without any water after they were caught. I guess I still do feel the same way, but as I grew up, I learned to ignore those thoughts because I have so much fun crabbing and enjoy eating them even more! Since I plan on not eating them at all eventually and don’t believe in animal cruelty, I probably shouldn’t catch them anymore either. I guess I could catch & release the ones I get, but I don’t think my family would be too happy if I caught some big guys then threw them back. Plus, that’s no fun. You see my dilemma?

I think that I’m also having a hard time because I don’t think about crabs the same way I do cows & pigs. Crabs are no where near as cute, smart, or lovable as cows & pigs are. BUT! It is a living thing that can feel pain and I don’t want to cause any animals pain anymore because all animals are created equal. BUT! I love going crabbing. I’m struggling here…

So you see, I’m a little stuck. Since seafood will be the last to go for me, I’m thinking that I will most likely go crabbing one more time this summer then retire my net (I crack myself up). If I truly want to commit to this lifestyle then I know not going crabbing anymore is something that would need to happen. It saddens me a bit because I enjoy going to spend time with my dad & brother but I guess we will just need to find another hobby to do together… that doesn’t include killing animals.

As far as running goes, I can’t imagine running 13 miles tomorrow. That’s what I have scheduled but I honestly don’t see it happening since I probably won’t get out there for a run today. I should be running right now instead of writing this post (a.k.a. stalking how to meet Taylor Swift tomorrow). I may just run 9 tomorrow and call it even. More excuses, I know, but I’m home for the weekend & want to enjoy myself and don’t really have time to go out for 6 miles right now. Well, I do, but like I said… Taylurking #PRIORITIES.

<3


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15 thoughts on “An Ethical Dilemma”

  • There is no decision that we can make that doesn’t come with some sort of balance or sacrifice. ~ quoted by unknown Some of our choices are hard but in the end I am sure you will do what you feel is right and good for you!

  • Ahhh….I hear ya. I love cute pigs and cows but I still eat them. The dilemma is real.

    While being careful not to rationalize behavior I’m just too lazy to change, I try to remember though that when you go into this line of thinking: where does it end? If I stop eating animals because I don’t like to kill innocent creatures…do I then have to stop squashing bugs and poisoning rodents? Should I feel guilty about using paper and living in a wood dwelling because I love trees? Etc etc. I think there is also a big difference in killing animals for food vs. for other reasons. Animals kill each other all the time for food, it’s part of nature. But me killing a snake just because it’s scary looking is cruel.

    I think the answer is that we all do the best we can with the understanding that it will never be perfect. Just because we can’t be 100% in any effort – conservation, not harming animals, etc – doesn’t mean we can’t be better. Taking some steps is always better than taking none.

    • I love this response because it brings up points I haven’t really thought about yet such as the killing bugs and use of paper/wood. For me right now, I am focusing on no longer contributing to animal cruelty but you are absolutely right, where does it end? I’m not sure if I consider insects as animals, but should I? I don’t know! No one is perfect and no one will ever be so I’m striving for balance right now. And absolutely agreed– taking some steps is better than taking none. I think another issue I’m having with this is I don’t want to be hypocritical… saying that I don’t believe in animal cruelty yet still contributing to it by going crabbing. Oy!

  • I do eat seafood. I was vegetarian for a long time, but I honestly feel better eating seafood and I like it. I don’t eat beef, chicken, pork, etc. I just don’t like those foods. It felt really weird transitioning and only eating seafood because I wasn’t a “meat eater” (and I’m still not- I go to cookouts and there’s nothing for me to eat), yet I’m not a vegetarian either and don’t fit in with the vegetarian/vegan crowd because I do eat seafood and dairy.

    The point is, labels are for clothes. If you’re not comfortable crabbing or eating crab, don’t do it. It is all a personal choice and sometimes I think people put too much emphasis on trying to eat or be a certain way instead of just eating what they like and what they feel is right and ethical.

    Good luck with your 13, or your 9! I am so taking tomorrow OFF!

  • I’ve always had a hard time with the idea of fishing and crabbing. If it’s going to be done I’d want the “death” process to be as quick as possible. The suffocation thing I couldn’t handle, a dilemma indeed!

  • I’m not a vegetarian or vegan, just a regular eater, but I always feel an ethical dilemma eating certain foods. Though I feel it more by going to the grocery store and buying items. I like to have an understanding of where my food comes from and I try to eat local. I think for your dilemma, you have to do what feels right for you. And not everyone is going to understand or agree, but that’s ok.

    BTW, I LOVE your blog name. That caught my eye and brought me over here. I’m excited to see how Chicago is going to go for you. I’ve run it 3 times and it is my first marathon love.

    • Thank you 🙂 I’m coming to the understanding that I just need to go about this transition doing what’s best for me, even if it doesn’t exactly align up with a specific term. I’m glad you love the blog name!!! And excited to know it caught your attention 🙂 I cannot wait for Chicago!!! Any words of wisdom?

  • That is a real struggle. I feel it on a regular basis when grocery shopping. Sometimes I really think I need to be vegetarian, for the good of the animals. It’s a mental battle, for sure.

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