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A Sound Defense For Animal Rights Zealots

5 Pages 1153 Words

Ah, the Pandora’s box opened by the mere mention of animal experimentation. When faced with the choice of sparing an animal's life or saving a human’s, most people would choose — and for the most part, reasonably so — to save the human. But to do this time and time again, one must think that human needs are more important than non-human animals.
Most think of animals as objects whose mere purpose is to serve our desires and whims, whether for the taste of their flesh, the feel of their fur and skin, or the profit that can be made from either. Perhaps we, the people, should rethink the multitude of ways we use animals for our purposes and endeavor to minimize their pain, discomfort, and ultimate demise in performing such necessary functions as research and agriculture. If we are indeed all created equal, as Lincoln said, would that not hold true for animals as fellow inhabitants of Earth? From this line of thought, humans do not necessarily have the right to test animals to serve our own desires and whims.
In terms of sheer utilization, animals today are more valuable than ever before. We not only eat, ride, shoot, wear, trap, hunt, and farm animals, but the medical field experiments on over 17 million animals per year. Although 85 percent of that total is comprised of rats and mice (Cowley 51), the number still staggers. Testing is conducted by a multitude of independent and government-funded groups, including the United States Departments of Agriculture, Energy, Defense and Transportation (Cowley 51), and the number grows almost daily with progress — and retrogression — in the medical field.
Though lauded worldwide in prevention and cure of innumerable diseases, such as alcoholism, diabetes, heart disease and manic depression, the act of animal experimentation has met no small amount of opposition. Polarity reached such epic proportions that Stanford University halted plans on an $18 millon lab, costing the school an e...

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