Re: Beekeeping ethics and Social Context
As a beekeeper ethics for me inters the picture in many ways. I myself have raised as a point of conversation the benefits of killing the bees in a hive in the fall in order to harvest every drop of honey. On a purely financial basis this actually makes since. I have an investment in my bees. the colony alone cost $100. The hive, tools, food, medications etc are also expensive. I have invested lots of time in order to understand and make choices to benefit my bees. I will have spent about as much if not more to help my bees get through the winter as they cost me in the first place. To do so I left 100 lbs of honey on the hive. That is $600 to me if I sold it at $6 a lb and I have people waiting for it. This has been primarily a ethical choice on my part.
I will spend time and money to treat my bees for illness even though it could be of greater benefit to me to just let them die so I can again take their honey. Again an ethical choice.
I have taken great care in the quality and condition of the equipment my bees are housed in. Again strongly influenced by ethics. It is not humane or beneficial to keep bees in conditions where they suffer or face additional challenges. I support that at least in part my choice to provide quality and more expensive equipment is ethical on the grounds that other choices I make are almost purely ethical.
I also keep current on treatments for the diseases of bees. Not only because ti is a benefit to me but that it is a benefit to the bees. I have a genuine concern for all bees that whatever is afflicting them gets resolved. weather I keep bees or not. I always have.
I have heard many of the views of those that will not eat meat, drink milk or eat honey. I also spent quite a while setting in a park talking to a person that thought they where a knight of the round table. It struck me that this gentleman was most likely quite educated. He actually knew the story of King Arther very well. He knew all the names of the characters as well as the events depicted in the stories. It is my philosophy that if this man is happy being a knight. Then please someone provide him with some armor. It does not make him right it makes him happy. So for those that are happiest not eating honey. I will do my part to sell all I have to others.
Significant Minority vs Insignificant Majority, 20% of causes produce 80% of the effects.