a) They do waste cleanup at a spread and scale that we could not replace.
b) They are a food source in the web/chain/whatever metaphor of life that ends up at us.
I actually can stop at the waste cleanup part and be satisfied that that’s good enough reason to keep them.
When I was 17, we had to put our old dog to sleep. Suddenly, our kitchen floor was mysteriously sticky and dirty all the time.
Why? No more dog licks helping it stay clean.
We can replace food with vitamins and taste with spray. Yeah, I’ve heard similar things.
But for me it’s the waste cleanup function that’s makes insects the “killer app” for this planet that keeps things going. I don’t want to have to think about every rotting thing and doing something chemically about it when there’s tiny workers all over the place doing it for us, saving us billions of dollars and lots of effort that we couldn’t do as well.
I’m weird about life though. I apologize when I have to kill a wasp that invades my space. I don’t want to have to but my fear and desire to keep doing what I’m doing on the computer at that time instead of coexisting or attempting to coax it outside makes it a choice that I make.
Does the wasp hear me before it dies? Well, that’s not the point so much as is my attitude towards killing things.
For mosquitoes, it’s “why did you make me have to do that to you?” – yeah, I pull out the victim blaming routine on mosquitoes and I’m not proud of it.
Mind you, I have no problem with broad spectrum mild flying insect spray. I announce “It’s killing time” and well, if they’re around, they die.