Global warming isn't the be-all or end-all of environmental degradation--the destruction of the Louisiana shrimp industry is directly related to chemicasl released by DuPont. Similarly the problems in the Gulf of Mexico due to the BP disaster.
It's true I am not an environmental engineer but it's also true I am not just someone who has latched onto an idea because it is socially popular either...ie. without having thought it through or considered the implications.
And, it seems to me that if one is going to take a stand based on abuse or suffering then all
the causes of suffering are morally equal.
Flatulence is a fact of life especially in animals that eat hard to digest foodstuffs. Once upon a time, millions and millions of bison roamed the plains of North America. I wonder if they farted? Or maybe only where no one could hear?
For that matter, maybe someone could start a movement to ban human flatulence? I suspect there's more of us than there are cattle in feed lots.
FWIW, I suspect if cattle weren't raised as another RTW, manufactured
product, much of this problem would go away. That's essentially what you imply with the bit about "European leather."
But the only reason cattle are raised like that is because of our own "factory mentalities." We
create the demand. And it's not just a demand for a specific product, it's a demand for speed, low cost, and instant gratification. The least amount of effort for the most amount of profit with no serious consideration for real, substantive quality. In that regard, it cuts across the board.
If we demand plastic shoes because the circumstances of our chosen
lives dictate that we can't be true to our own beliefs, we are the problem, not the 'ethicality' of leather or eating meat...or eating nothing but tofu, for that matter. Those are just symptoms.