animal rights

Topics: Animal rights, Animal testing, Nervous system Pages: 5 (1882 words) Published: March 8, 2014

Animal rights has been one of the most peculiar and debated topics in the whole history of ethics. In the society we live in today, it is under law according to the declaration of human rights, for all people to have basic rights, such as liberty, personal security and equal treatment no matter nationality, skin color or sex. This law therefore excludes any form of slavery or any cruel and degrading treatment or punishment from happening, but as stated though, this regulation only benefits humans, as if they were the only form of life on planet Earth. The question then becomes clear. What about animals? are they protected as well? Many people in our days unfortunately don't seem to understand why animals should be protected and what having a right for them means. Animal rights is the idea that animals have the same rights as humans, to live free of suffrage, just as important as living individuals, and with the same moral status as humans. Is this today actually happening? This essay is specifically going to address the issue of animal rights through the examination of a particular branch, which is animal vivisection. Vivisection comes from the latin word ''vivus'' meaning alive and ''sectio'' meaning cutting. It is defined as surgery conducted for experimental purposes on a living organism, usually on animals with a central nervous system, that is, the part of the nervous system that integrates the information that it receives and coordinates the activity of all parts of the body. Basically, we can say vivisection is the practice of cutting into or using invasive techniques on live animals for testing and education in a wide range of environments, such as universities, hospitals and research institutes. Until now, Billions of non-human creatures have been burnt, crushed, poisoned with toxic chemicals, and psychologically tormented in the name of scientific curiosity. Just to give an idea, one animal dies in a laboratory in USA every second, every 2 seconds in Japan and every 12 seconds in the UK. But then, what have we learned so far from all this suffering? We can now state that animal research is an enormous waste of money. The US for example, spends approximately 18 billion $ per year, in animal experiments regardless of the merit of their projects. In fact, until now, there has been too much suffering for too little knowledge. For example a prime example of vivisection's inaccuracy, is the experimentation on animals in the AIDS research. Chimpanzees, used for the experiment, in fact do not develop the AIDS virus, even when infected with it. Never the less, the National institute of health which is funded by the tax dollars, has spent over $10 million on chimpanzee AIDS research and plans to spend at least an additional $4.5 million. Another problem with animal vivisection is about the location where the experiments are held. The laboratory environment in fact, is often so stressful for animals, that their hormone levels, cancer rates, and susceptibility to infections increases. This is due to the fact that the anxiety triggered by confinement, frequently suppresses their immune systems and so animals, often exhibit illnesses, making it difficult, if not impossible, for researchers to determine which symptoms are the result of the experiment and which can be attributed to the laboratory situation itself. This situation makes clear that in the end, the experiment is almost useless. In addition, important advances in the medical field have been made without the use of vivisection. This includes the identification of AIDS made when rare infections and malignancies began appearing in patients in the late 1970’s. Thus discovery of Penicillin and development of x-rays have been tremendously important innovations with non animal studies. The question then becomes obvious. Whey do we keep testing on animals? and is it moral to do so? Animals are similar to humans in fact, the central nervous system of many animals is...
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