Posts Tagged ‘human rights’

Plants Have Dignity too

Thursday, May 15th, 2008

You may have seen some of the snide commentary in the press about how the Swiss government has deemed that plants, as living beings, have an inherent worth and therefore we should not damage or destroy them for no rational reason. Seems pretty obvious to me. I’m continually shocked at how so many people treat plants so cavalierly, bulldozing them, ripping them out, or sawing them down as if they were inanimate landscape props.

The way they’ve been portrayed, you’d think the Swiss Federal Ethics Committee, which made the decision, was a bunch of New Age flakes. Actually, they are a distinguished group of ethicists who have issued a detailed, well-reasoned report, which is available here. But the idea that plants have dignity may be difficult to fathom for a society that can’t even manage to engage in a well-reasoned discussion about the dignity of human detainees.