Debate on animal vivisection
Madam, – According to John Power (October 16th) we’re “the only species that troubles itself with the notion of ethics”. If so, then persistence in actions of at least questionable morality, such as causing suffering and premature death to humans or other animals, merely makes us guilty instead of innocent. I suppose that, in Christian theology, this would be the sin against the Holy Ghost.
And I don’t know what gorillas, etc would do if they had the abilities “bestowed” (by whom?) upon us humans. Maybe they’d behave quite decently, or maybe they’d use us for experiments, getting their own back.
Yes, I think it would obviously be ethically better, if (and it’s a very big “if”) we feel we must experiment on living creatures, to use those that have given their informed consent to being experimented on. Otherwise, it’s an abuse of power.
Finally, animals apparently deserve “a certain amount” of respect. How much? Who decides? Who decreed that animals are “subservient to people”?
It’s a position analogous to those which formerly decreed that non-whites (though deserving “a certain amount of our respect”) were subservient to whites, or women (ditto) to men. – Yours, etc,