BP#12: Venus Flytraps Need Protection From Poachers in North Carolina

We’ve all heard of and seen a Venus flytrap. They are awesome. In North Carolina, their history cause back all the way to the 18th century with their discovery in the state. With their uniqueness, people are naturally drawn to them, and this is leading to their extinction. Over the years, the Venus flytrap population has become severely threatened by people illegally stealing the plants or poaching them from the wild. These people end of selling the plants for roughly a quarter each, and they can be used as a way to increase health, or at least that’s what some of the companies that use them will tell you. Now their are only 35,000 of the plants remaining in North Carolina, a state that has name the plant it’s official state carnivorous plant. As a result of this, as of 2015, the state has made it a felony to poach these plants and those who do can face prison time.

Poaching these plants is clearly an ethical breach in society not only because of the law that says so, but because it’s the morally wrong thing to do. Nothing has proven the Venus flytrap to be beneficial to our health and thus there is no need for us to have them. Our quest to obtain them, whether psychological or monetary, does not justify forcing them toward extinction. If we look at this situation from Mill’s point of view, we want to look for the action with the greatest good to bad consequences, or the optimific action. This action is the best action that we can take in any given scenario according to this point of view. In this situation, the optimific action is clearly not to poach these wonderful plants because the only real “consequence” is that the species will no longer be facing extinction. If this poaching continues, then this species will go extinct and the Venus flytrap will go down just as a fond memory of a amazing plant instead of continuing to exists.

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