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We have our health, and we intend to keep it. Rught now, we have a society where vivisectors enforce their rules against nonhuman animals, through the power of the state, killing them by the millions. Animal activists are already working through the democratic process, with the ultimate goal of ending animal exploitation.
The debate and voting may never be done, as long as we have a society where some people believe in animal rights and others believe in animal exploitation. I hope that all of us around the world who are fighting for peace and justice never rest, and are never content to let the will of those in power trample the rights of the disenfranchised. I applaud your social activism.
There is so much you can do to help the animals that it baffles the mind why activists decide biomedical research should be a priority to them. Ringach, why do you so thoroughly discount the value and contributions of in vitro research and studies on consenting human volunteers? It is scientifically dishonest to claim that stopping vivisection will lead to millions of human deaths, because no one is asking for all biomedical research to stop.
The resources that would have gone into vivisection could go into more ethical research as well as public health initiatives. How many millions of people are you condemning to death by taking billions of dollars away from public health intiatives, for a mere chance at a cure — especially for diseases that can be prevented through lifestyle changes?
Furthermore, you continue to argue that humans are so intellectually and emotionally unique, yet perform or used to perform? Do animal researchers oppose lifestyle changes?
Threaten to kill everyone who eat less then calories a day? Urging government to forbid walking more then 10km a day? Have someone ever tried to force you to smoke? Sure they will never affect you? Our point is that animal research is one of several approaches there is are a vast number of animal research techniques that are all crucial to medical progress.
These techniques are not in competition, it is the synergy between them that advances science. Animal rights activists often like to give the impression that scientists who work on animals are somehow separate from scientists who use other non-animal approaches. For a start most scientists who undertake animal research also use other non-animal approaches in their work, there are a lot of clinician scientists who undertake animal research, and those who do specialise in animal-based techniques — and every scientific technique has its specialists — work closely with colleagues who use other approaches.
If you attend any medical research conference you will find animal researchers listening with great attention to talks on the latest in-vitro or clinical research, while scientists who have never done any animal research themselves listen to talks on animal research and discuss the implications for their own work. To conclude, all these approaches — in vitro, animal, clinical, genetic, computational etc.
Ringach seems to discount any research that is not animal-based. Ringach is using scare tactics, telling the public that millions of people will die without animal research. Even we ended all biomedical research today, we would still have all of the pharmaceutical, surgical and other medical tools at our disposal that we now have. And the fact is that ending vivisection would not end biomedical research. As you point out, Paul, there is a wide variety of approaches available.
The resources that go into vivisection could be redirected toward more ethical research and public health initiatives. It could even go toward universal health care! How many millions of people would live longer, more healthy lives if everyone had health care?! I guess you have not read my reply, but it seems clear we have difficulty having a two-way communication.
So I will now stop. Doris, my comment is not a tactic, nor is it intended to scare anyone. It is something I believe, and further the results of medical research speak for themselves, res ipsa loquitor. The tools of tomorrow, cannot be relied upon for the future. Drugs become ineffective, new diseases emerge, old diseases change.
What you call vivisection is a phase of research, not an option to choose. Ringach happens to utilize and develop a different option, a useful one indeed, but one not capable of replacing animal use.
How will we help them without research? Ebola from Africa is not solved and will require animal research to solve. There are many other examples. In Africa, India, South America and elsewhere they do not have the luxury.
We have yet to fully understand or solve malaria for example, and it has changed and is continuing to change. Animal based research is one component of we learn about such diseases and cannot be replaced. You have every right to oppose animal research and I will fight for your right to do so, through peaceful, democratic means, only. The only winning strategy that exists to end animal research is by publicizing your beliefs and philosophy, by educating people, by convincing people and then voting for those who share your beliefs.
Then, when the process is done, accepting the will of the majority, peacefully, is required, until the next election, the process for which begins immediately. If you are unable to convince society to abandon animal research willingly, by peaceful means, there must your efforts stop and your co-philosophists must agree to disagree, again peacefully. Overheated rhetoric equating animal rights with variations on the human rights theme, simply will not resonate.
Tormenting the personal lives of scientists, makes your side look ugly. Ordinary people then fear you and mistrust you.
You become more revolting than your opinion of researchers. You must convince the pubic on the merits, using no human rights or Holocaust analogies, to be successful. Ringach, I have not used any scare tactics. Please point to one thing I have said that can be called a scare tactic. Furthermore, to attribute the violent actions of a few extremists to an entire philosophy or group is wrong.
Ringach, I have also spent too much time debating this here with you. I used to agree with you because I used to be speciesist. I do not agree with utilitarianism or consequentialism.
I am sorry, but I cannot continue a conversation with someone that equates the adoption of her children to that of pets, nor someone that vaccinates her children only because it is required by the adoption agency, as you seem to have implied.
I believe that society has a responsibility to the human children in orphanages and in foster care all over the world. Just as we have a responsibility to cats and dogs in shelters to adopt instead of breed. Many reasonable people will adopt their cats and dogs from shelters, but seem to have a disconnect when it comes to human children in orphanges. I want to urge everyone, when it comes to adding children to your family, to at least consider adoption. These children need loving families.
I am not against but FOR the use of alternative methods when they are available such as in-vitro and human-based studies. I am not against but FOR the continued development of alternatives when these are not available. It is not only education and poor choices alone, but also economic status, that drive many families to a deficient diet based on fast-food restaurants.
Should we also ignore health problems that may arise in vegan children that lack of a balanced diet as well? Was that a lifestyle choice? Are you suggesting, as Prof. Francione did, that we should simply distribute more condoms and ignore the suffering of AIDS patients? You seem to adhere to the notion that diet is the source and cure of all illness.
I only wish this was the case. True — a balanced diet and exercise are key to good health. But you cannot cure autism by eating a carrot. You cannot treat epilepsy by feeding a patient spinach. And meat is not the only source of all these illnesses.
I agree there is a range of cognitive abilities from lower animals to humans. It is a huge range. And yes, there is a gap. This does not deny Darwinian evolutionary continuity as claimed by animal activists , but merely says that humans stand now alone because, for some reason, our closest cousins did not make it. The tree of life is… a tree. If you take out some branches away you can end up with gaps in the leaves.
There is a gap. Animals are physiologically similar to us, but cognitively there are morally relevant differences. The scientific work is based on our physiological similarities. But moral relevant qualities are not based on physiological traits but cognitive ones. Here, I believe humans stand apart. We will never know how it feels to be a bat if you have read the paper , but there is much we can infer about the minds of other animals by cognitive science.
Ringach, you misunderstood my view. The sword cuts both ways. Are you suggesting that we condemn millions of people to contracting AIDS by spending resources on vivisection that could have gone to condom and needle distribution? You mention economic status. How about redirecting vivisection resources toward universal health care? Are you suggesting that millions of people without health care should suffer so that you and your colleagues can perform experiments on mice that may or may not result in useful information for humans?
We have limited resources, so no matter where we choose to spend our health care dollars, some will be left out. Why choose the method that also kills millions of animals?
Regardless of our cognitive differences or similarities, why do you believe cognitive abilities are relevant to rights? Nowhere in our society to we grant greater human rights to those with superior cognitive abilities.
It seems your argument is based on cognitive abilities because it gives you the result you want — that humans should be able to experiment on animals. Not because cognitive abilities are a suitable criteria for rights holding. We ought to have a balanced research portfolio. Medical research with animals is an important part of it. Mathematics is an important part of it… and so is physics… and so is classical music and literature. As for the rest of your questions, I simply do not have time to continue asnwering them.
It is somewhat surprising that animal rights activists do not really know this literature well. Thus, not using our intelligence and all means available to us to learn, is the greatest immorality.
Rather than considering animal research subjects as victims, the more appropriate lens is that of hero. Unknown to themselves the mice, rabbits, rats and zebra fish of most basic research are heroes, as their sacrifice helps others. Opponents will argue that free will was not exercised so their heroism was not voluntary.
This is true, yet every soldier or sailor who volunteers for military service does not do so expecting to find him or herself in situations where they must expend their lives to save others. That is not truly voluntary either. We make the best of the situations we find ourselves in. Appropriately conducted animal research is a heroic activity for subject and researcher alike.
Medical Killing and the Psychology of Genocide. This website should probably expand on its simplistic and inaccurate arguments before criticising others. But expert opinion must be taken into consideration when it comes to the science. That is his opinion as an expert in life sciences. The first problem is that animal right activists will not even accept this scientific fact.
This makes having a reasoned and honest discussion on the morality of research nearly impossible. The equivocation means that many of these claims are simply true at the same time. Many activists would like to say this means that we must prove the negative — that there is no other way we could have obtained the benefits we did without the use of animals in research. I think this is simply impossible to do. But this is not what we mean by the term… or what I mean.
What I mean by the term is that substantial effort was put into trying to find alternatives and none were found. That we do not see any other way to obtain the information other than using invasive methods than, for ethical reasons, we only consider justified in animals.
So the term is not strictly scientific, but also has a moral component to it. It is not that the techniques are limited to animals. Yes, we could grow tumors in humans as we do in mice. Whether Hitler and the Nazis did something or not is irrelevant to whether it is true, or ethically acceptable.
Animal rights protection is political activism, not just saying something. People saying sky is blue never used violent tactics to prove it — people saying sky is yellow did rebellion in China in a. Violent ideology is more likely to be wrong, and Hitler used much violence against researchers. Torching labs and threatening scientists seems more interesting for them. Do they know Holocaust organizers were the most radical animal rights supporters for their time?
That is such an awful argument. Are you a hypocrite if you profit from the understanding of hypothermia that was developed by Nazi research on Jews? One might consistently hold that all harmful research on animals should stop now, and still utilize the benefits that have been made possible by the suffering of millions in the past.
Killing or inflicting pain, for personal or societal gain, is simply not ethical, any more than pointing a gun at someone and taking their money is, even if you use the money for a good cause. Exploiting others may be instinctive, or practical, or even necessary for survival, but it is NOT ethical. Why is that such a difficult concept? It is precisely because humans have moral status and concepts that we bear a special responsibility to apply them consistently across the board, not merely in our biased favor.
Sorry if this offends you, but animal rights activists must accept that their request to stop the work will condemn millions of humans and animals to suffering and death. Actually DrugMonkey had an excellent post on this subject a little while back, well worth a read http: DVZ, you are missing the point, as Dario pointed out in an earlier post humans and non-human animals do not have an equal moral status https: There are a lot of reasons for this including relationships to other humans, current degree of sentience, potential for future development, sapience, self-awareness, ability to consider the future etc.
All these point to a sliding scale of moral status, with monkeys no more equal to humans, than mice are equal to monkeys. Your unbridled passion is noted. However it adds nothing to the discussion here, and is a wonderful example of how such unrestrained emotion and lack of respect for others leads to violent attitudes. That type of behavior is what fuels those who advocate Human on Human violence as a way of dealing with their own cognitive dissonance over others not sharing their viewpoints.
Your commentary also says more about who you are. The fact that you chose to approach your research like a Nazi does not represent the scientific community, nor our sentiments about animal research. It is important to note that all IRB approved protocols for research are approved by groups of scientists and members of the Lay community.
The decision for or against use of animals are weighed heavily, with all other alternatives exhausted first. The scientific community cannot be held responsible for your disrespect of the serious nature of our work.
The argument about putting the lives of animals before humans, or vice versa is exactly that, an argument. What is a definite: It is also important to note that the scientific community uses both humans and animals to do research.
Animals assist with pre-clinical trial work, and humans are part of clinical trials. This silly argument that science is designed to prolong human longevity has to stop. If DVZ or Emma believed that, they would not take antibiotics, nor would they go to doctors or hospitals when they were ill.
To make light of tragedies such as the Holocaust for publicity and shock value represents poor taste and judgment. Ronald my comment does not say remove their actual heads it just means that if people took their heads out of their little comfort zone and actually looked around they may realize what this human race has done to this beautiful planet.
I think a fairer question is: On the other hand, I think the issue is much more murky when we propose questions that involve making the decision about this for other people children, etc. Why are you arguing that medical progress resulting from animal research benefits only white males? It benefits men, women, children, as well as other animals. Consider vaccines or heart transplants, among any number of other advances that depended on animal research.
Your own position is arrogant, claiming that you and others who agree with you should be granted the right to deny others one major avenue for medical and scientific advances that can benefit many people. I wonder how many people that so passionately defend animals at the expense of humans would not even be here if their parents had been stricken down with polio or untreatable diabetes, and how many of them, when faced with a cancer diagnosis, will stoically face a painful death rather than take lifesaving treatments that were developed from biomedical research with animals.
My, what a hateful bunch. The Nazi doctors did what they did at the behest of scientists, by the way because they sincerely believed they were acting in the best interests of mankind and medical progress whereas a lot of current-day biomedical research has a significant profit-motive component. The exploitation of those who are less powerful but capable of experiencing pain and suffering , for the sheer benefit of the exploiters, is always immoral by any imaginable, objective standard.
It is you who are applying a black-and-white view by separating humans off for one consideration and all other animals for another as if Darwinian evolution never occurred; God just created two distinct moral types, huhh? But the worse part of it is, that no real good came of that research, because like most such research, it was so weakly-constructed and poorly-thought-out. Would that include treatments for kids? Regenerative medicine aimed at providing new organs for those suffering from congenital disease or trauma?
What menas we have for alleviating the suffering of kids with brain tumors? I wasnt aware that all those diseases can be already cured,. The development of STX, a drug which has had promising results in a Phase II trial in improving the social interactions and behavior of autistic children.
Research involving animals has helped to identify the causes of infiltration by gliomblastoma Multiforme a common brain tumour cells, one of the major obsticles to curing such cancers. What and who gives humans the right to kill another living creature!!! Who the hell do you people think you are?!?! How dare you presume that humans are more important than animals.
Humans and there stinking greed is what has caused the plant to be in the mess it is now and animals have to suffer because of it. You have the chance to save one, who would you save? And there you have it: Vlasak in the human-hating, rather than animal-loving, club. Emma, are you arguing that all prevention and treatment derived from animal research in order to address human and animal disease and injury should be abandoned so that nature can take its course? If so, who gives you the right to make that kind of decision for others?
Yes I am, what gives us the right to test on animals? Animals have to rights so there is none to take away. Rights do not come from nature, they are created. Humans created rights as humans are the only animal on the planet able to enter a moral contract to accept those rights.
What gives you the right to take away one of our greatest survival tactics: Maybe if you first learn to write and spell correctly, and obviously if you learn some reading comprehension, then maybe it will be consider slighly interesting to waste time arguing with such an ignoramus as you. Ahh dear Lucy what must it be like to be as perfect as you with no spelling and grammar mistakes oh wait hang on in your later posts there are spelling mistakes and your grammar is no better then mine!!
Clearly you have no argument or point to make or you would have at least tried! If PeTA is not a joke, riddle me this batman: If we are no longer to be farming animals for their meat, what the heck are we supposed to be feeding our dogs and cats? It would be pretty cruel to force a cat to subsit on suppliments and plants. There is no evidence it is safe and many of the diets available contain nutritional deficiencies.
Animals and humans evolved to derive nutrition primarily from food not pills. Really, you could just get a rabbit rather than allow a cat to go blind. Humans and other animals evolved to derive nutrition best from food, not pills…. For someone who claims to care about animals, you seem awfully ready to roll the dice when it comes to their health.
What exactly do people eat now that they did not evolve to eat? I said what is BEST for the animal. Cats evolved to derive nutrition from meat.
A vegan diet for any obligate carnivore, be it a domestic house cat or a lion is cruel and unhealthy. In the not-too-distant future, these sadistic vivisectionists will be looked upon in EXACTLY the same way as we now view those like Sigmund Rascher, a German SS doctor whose deadly experiments on humans were judged inhumane and criminal during the Nuremberg Trials, resulting in his execution April 26, If you actually believe in empirical scientific facts regarding animal and human cognition, you realize that there are enormous differences that are the underpinnings of the differences in the moral relevancy of animals and humans.
Once again, the fact that animals lack the same moral status as humans does not mean that we are less than obligated to be responsible for their welfare, but they do mean that their use in scientific research on disease is — at least to a substantial extent — responsible and justifiable.
Let us remember that Dr. Vlasak is ill-equipped to criticize anyone for behavior that reasoning based upon discrimination. Indeed, it was only last year that he made arguably racist comments http: Fortunately, his misanthropic, hate-mongering views are not shared by those that believe that giving food to the hungry means they remain healthy, learn, grow up to help others and contribute positively to the world in a manner he seems to have lost touch with.
I think that Dr. Not a word on my statements against your arrogant, anthropocentric argument for white male supremacy that allows you to decide who deserves moral status in the world. Your inability to address the issue speaks volumes. The arguments in support of our position are here for all to read. Your point of view is nothing but simple-minded and untenable. Indeed, your willful ignorance of any point of view any other than your own is the only thing that trumps your moral blindness though, of course, they are mechanistically related.
PTfS, if you are going to use a blog entry of mine to conveniently bash a poster, I suggest you read my other entries. Your assertion that the psychological differences between humans and other animals make it defensible to torture them is ridiculous at best. Scientists can write cruelty in a nice little package of words and people respect and do not question them. Humans and other animals do not deserve to be nonconsensually tested on or harmed.
Animal testing is cruel. But, many science proponents seem to believe that science should be devoid of ethics if you can get results, cruelty comes second in importance thus your responses and the existence of this site does not surprise me. It seems unlikely that the figures of Pasteur, Harvey, Sabin, and other medical heroes will be viewed as those of German SS doctors in the future.
It is more likely that you and your ilk will be remembered as nothing more than leaders of a hate group.
You will be remembered as an animal supremacist who placed the lives of mice ahead of AIDS and cancer patients. You will be remembered as a racist physician that managed to get through medical school without a modicum understanding of where the knowledge in the textbooks came from. Well said Jimmy, in the future our descendents will look back and wonder at the motivation of people like Jerry Vlasak who were in a position to do much good by healing the sick, but instead devoted their lives to campaigns of harassment, lies and violence against the scientists and doctors who are working to make this world a better place.
Pasteur, Harvey and Sabin, and many, many other animal researchers, will be remembered and honoured long after Vlasak has stopped being even a footnote in history. As I wrote previously, most moral philosophers do not consider the interest of a mouse in life relevantly similar to those of normal humans in life this includes Peter Singer, Tom Regan, DeGrazia, Ortega y Gasset and many others:.
PeTA does not have a well articulated ethical position nor is considering the consequences of their actions. If anyone can find one I will be happy to comment on their ethical position. Let us agree that the vast majority of people would not consider the moral status of a mouse equivalent to that of a normal human.
It is difficult to find someone that will jump in front of a car to save a mouse, but many will risk their lives to save another human. It is difficult to find someone that will jump into a lake to save the life of a drowning mouse, but many will feel compelled to do it if they saw a child. It is difficult to find someone that will reject vaccines for their children or their dogs, or chemotherapy for their mothers, and so on… all of which were developed by scientists working with animals.
In this planet, humans are the only full moral agents, able to recognize the interests of other parties and act accordingly. We can and should ask what is the moral status of animals. But it is clear that moral status exist only in the eyes of human beings.
Animals cannot engage in the social contract upon which rights are based. Animal cannot have rights. The zebra cannot bring a claim to the lion that attacked her. Similarly, you cannot bring a claim to a dog that attacked your child.
Thus, when it comes to our relationship with animals there is only one question that makes sense, and only one: