It’s a good listen. At first, I brushed it off – of course animals experience emotions, we’re not just anthropomorphilizing them – but Berns makes a good point when he says that you still need to prove it scientifically because then it raises a lot of moral questions about agricultural practices involving sentient beings.
That’s what Kerry Bowman, the bioethicist discusses, and that was the part of the talk I found most fascinating and disturbing. I feel that there’s no question that animals experience emotions, are intelligent and, depending on your definition then, are sentient. I’m an omnivore. How moral is it for me to consume sentient beings? How moral is it for me to condone the practice of raising sentient beings for food?
This all reminds me of a SF short story I read years ago that tells of humans landing on an alien planet and eating the native vegetation. Decades later, they learned that the vegetation they consumed were the sentient inhabitants of the planet undergoing a developmental stage. It was deemed justice for that alien generation to look for the humans that had consumed part of their body and demand/harvest that part back…….