This is a most fascinating historical and academic issue, but I think the real lesson is that just as we use animals to serve human needs, so do we use vegitatation to serve human needs. Both should be seen as gifts / privileges and their use carries responsibility to treat our "subjects" with compassion and care. Our planet and our humanity may depend on it!
Northern California wildfire doubles in size, displaces thousands (Reuters)
from the article: It's not easy being green. What if plants have a brain?