It matters that animals are treated well, so I only eat animals who are raised in suffering-free conditions and given a quick, humane death.
It is normal and healthy for people to empathize with the animals they eat, to be concerned about whether or not they are living happy lives and to hope they are slaughtered humanely. However, if it is unethical to harm these animals, then it is more unethical to kill them.
Killing animals for food is far worse than making them suffer. Of course, it is admirable that people care so deeply about these animals that they take deliberate steps to reduce their suffering (e.g. by purchasing "free-range" eggs or "suffering free" meat). However, because they choose not to acknowledge the right of those same animals to live out their natural lives, and because slaughtering them is a much greater violation than mistreatment, people who eat 'humane' meat are laboring under an irreconcilable contradiction.
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