Questioner (Q): Talking about this recent controversy between PETA and a dairy producer, people are saying that lakhs of people are going to lose their employment if they switched to plant-based milk. So, what do you have to say about this?
Acharya Prashant (AP): See the employment argument, I appreciate it but it is not absolute in itself. In fact, the employment argument can be extended to absurd extremes, I could say pickpockets are employed in their own industry - the pickpocketing industry. So, why are you arresting them? It's an industry, why are you arresting them? You are making several hundred if not thousands or lakhs of them lose employment.
By no means, I am saying that a dairy farmer is a pickpocket, don't take it to that level. But what I am saying is - Are all means of employment really permissible legally, ethically, whichever way you want to look at it?
If the employment argument is absolute in itself, then anything that helps a man to earn money should be permissible. Then why do we, for example, punish tax defaulters? He is just trying to make some money for himself, just as the butcher is trying to make money for himself.
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Acharya Prashant is an emerging champion of socio-spiritual awakening in the world today. An alumnus of IIT-Delhi and IIM-Ahmedabad, and a former Civil Services officer, Acharya Prashant is an acclaimed Speaker, Vedanta Teacher and author of over 50 books. Apart from that he wears various hats: a veganism promoter, an environmental activist, a science activist, a campaigner against superstition, and a champion of essential human freedom. Know More