We often feel more concern about the pain inflicted to animal that have expression that are more intuitive to us. We are more compassionate with a chimpanzee than a trout, in part because we are sharing similar expression mechanism (esp. facial expression).


From wikipedia

trees are cut down to be used for building or sold as fuel, (sometimes in the form of charcoal or timber), while cleared land is used as pasture for livestock and plantation

According to forest facts

Rainforests once covered 14% of the earth's land surface; now they cover a mere 6%

78 million acres [of forest] lost every year!

My world

Imagine a world where tree sap is abundant and blood looking; dark red and similar viscosity as blood. A bit like what we can see on these images

enter image description here enter image description here

Imagine the origin of the color is unrelated to anything that is of economic or ecological interests.


Would we be less inclined to cutting trees down?


closed as primarily opinion-based by AndreiROM, Azuaron, sphennings, Mołot, L.Dutch Oct 23 '17 at 18:06

Many good questions generate some degree of opinion based on expert experience, but answers to this question will tend to be almost entirely based on opinions, rather than facts, references, or specific expertise. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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    $\begingroup$ Hello, I can see that you're fairly new to the site. Unfortunately, your question does not appear to be quite within scope for WB SE. Not only are you asking multiple questions, but you're also asking opinion-based ones at that. I would answer that no, it wouldn't in any way stop us from "doing our thing", just as it doesn't stop us from farming cattle, etc. And those animals actually bleed. You should try reframining your question. $\endgroup$ – AndreiROM Oct 23 '17 at 17:36
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    $\begingroup$ We hunt and eat animals and treat them inhumanely, they sure contain a lot of blood. $\endgroup$ – Schwern Oct 23 '17 at 17:36
  • $\begingroup$ @AndreiROM I reduced my post to a single question. I doubt I solved the opinion-based part that you describe though but I might have to read the exact definition of what we call opinion-based on WB.SE to really undersatnd why my question is off-topic here. $\endgroup$ – Remi.b Oct 23 '17 at 17:40
  • $\begingroup$ In my experience, most trees leak very little sap when you cut them. $\endgroup$ – Justsalt Oct 23 '17 at 17:57
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    $\begingroup$ I don't believe there can be sure, objective answer to this question. $\endgroup$ – Mołot Oct 23 '17 at 18:07

People would generally get over it, like we are already getting over slaughtering animals. Of course there would be some cults which oppose cutting the trees, maybe they will be Ok with using driftwood, but generally that should make no difference.

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    $\begingroup$ would probably give psychopaths a more gratuitous outlets to vent their desires on $\endgroup$ – anon Oct 23 '17 at 17:46

Probably Not

While compassion for animals, especially ones we keep as pets, is high, it doesn't translate into other animals. We keep and slaughter livestock, they bleed. We hunt wildlife, they bleed.

Economic Pressure

Human history says that if it pays, we'll harvest it. And we'll do it in the most efficient way possible, even if it's arguably inhuman or self-destructive. Modern livestock is kept crammed in inhuman conditions, yet we happily buy the resulting cheap meat at the store with little thought. Similarly, trees will be felled for the lumber, bleeding or not.

Psychological Distance

A boneless chicken breast has as much to do with slaughtering a chicken as a smooth wooden plank has to do with cutting down a tree.

In modern society, only the people keeping the livestock or working in the slaughterhouse have to see their conditions or blood or even what is recognizably an animal. Similarly, only the wood workers really ever see a whole tree. The average consumer is removed and only sees a sanitized version. Our current view of meat says we can live with that.

Ethical Wood?

What you might have is people claiming that wood is unethical, or that it must be harvested ethically, similar to leather. Perhaps there will be people who do not want to use wooden utensils or building materials. Whether this will have an impact on larger society is another question. Will it have as large an impact as vegetarianism? Or the smaller impact of veganism?


Since man has killed his fellow man despite the color of blood, and since we slaughter millions of cows, pigs, and chickens a year despite the color of animal's blood, sap being bloodlike would not prevent humanity from cutting down trees.


Sure, some would probably want to stay away from them. But in the end they need wood, how do you get wood? You cut the trees. Most would very likely get over it fast, I mean we still have slaughterhouses, don't we?

However, the ones who cut the tree's could always be looked up at for taking the 'creepy tree job.' There will always be people willing to take the icky jobs, just look at the world today.


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