Which Would You Eat? Carrots or Rabbit?

I’ve met some folks who shared their thoughts on vegetarianism with me.  They reason that vegetables are alive as well and if Buddhists do not eat animals out of compassion and do not wish to have a living thing killed for their food, they should not eat vegetables as well.

I present to you Carrots and Rabbit.

I know, I know.  This is an imbalanced comparison.  For most people who are omnivores would not eat rabbits anyway.  But the principle is this.  Given a choice, which would you pick?

Between vegetables and animals, when I ask a number of people to choose one to kill, cook and eat, most people would choose to eat carrots.  The answer is unanimously because it is easier to ‘kill’ carrots, cook and eat it.  When asked further, why it is easier to ‘kill’ carrots, they replied that because it is comparatively less alive than the rabbit.  I’ve not had one person choose carrots simply
because they don’t eat rabbits.  But I digress.

How about the following?  Is it because we have been conditioned to accept certain living beings as food for the table?

 

Or is it because both do not exhibit life?  Is that why it is somewhat easier for people to choose between carrots and meat?

References

Pictures from the following respective sites

http://vegetablezone.blogspot.com/2011/04/carrots-daucus-carota.html

http://www.wallcoo.net/animal/rabbit/html/wallpaper29.html

http://sylbestine.blogspot.com/2007/11/luncheon-meatbanned.html