They also can "scream" by giving off a pulse (that humans can't hear) when attacked and can "talk" to each other by giving off chemicals when attacked by insects, thereby warning neighboring relatives to start creating protective chemicals to defend themselves.
> They also can "scream" by giving off a pulse (that humans can't hear) when attacked...
Do you have a source for the ‘scream’ phenomenon?
I am aware of (and was myself misled by) several pop-science books which confusingly tried to compare plants giving off chemicals when attacked with animals screaming. The result was that a skim read would have given one the impression that plants could make sounds inaudible to humans, which was not what was meant.
This is getting very off topic, but I think that's a terrible basis for disregarding the ethical argument against eating meat. Why is it "species-ist" to think that mammals and other animals with highly developed nervous systems might have a conscious experience similar to our own (and not plants)?
The same argument leads a rational person to stop obsessing about the supposed morality of killing humans. The touchy-feely appeal to "think about the suffering of the _humans_" is likewise species-ist
I think they're saying that you may have thrown out the baby with the bathwater. If your conclusion horrifies you—doesn't resemble what you were optimizing for—you may be optimizing for the wrong thing. Rationality isn't broken; revisit your optimization criteria. See the paperclip optimizer, the smiles optimizer, etc.