Animal rights There is much disagreement as to whether non-human animals have rights, and what is meant by animal rights.
There is much less disagreement about the consequences of accepting that animals have rights. The consequences of animal rights Animal rights teach us that certain things are wrong as a matter of principle, that there are some things that it is morally wrong to do to animals. Human beings must not do those things, no matter what the cost to humanity of not doing them. Human beings must not do those things, even if they do them in a humane way.
Accepting the doctrine of animal rights means: No experiments on animals No breeding and killing animals for food or clothes or medicine No use of animals for hard labour No selective breeding for any reason other than the benefit of the animal No hunting No zoos or use of animals in entertainment Top. The case for animal rights Philosophers have usually avoided arguing that all non-human animals have rights because: the consequences are so limiting for humanity it would give rights to creatures that are so simple that the idea of them having rights seems to defy common sense The second problem is dealt with by not arguing that all animals have rights, but only that 'higher' animals have rights.
The case for animal rights The case for animal rights is usually derived from the case for human rights. The argument grossly oversimplified goes like this: Human animals have rights There is no morally relevant difference between human animals and adult mammals Therefore adult mammals must have rights too Human beings and adult mammals have rights because they are both 'subjects-of-a-life'. This means that: They have similar levels of biological complexity They are conscious and aware that they exist They know what is happening to them They prefer some things and dislike others They make conscious choices They live in such a way as to give themselves the best quality of life They plan their lives to some extent The quality and length of their life matters to them If a being is the subject-of-a-life then it can be said to have 'inherent value'.
All beings with inherent value are equally valuable and entitled to the same rights. The case against animal rights A number of arguments are put forward against the idea that animals have rights. Animals don't think Animals are not really conscious Animals were put on earth to serve human beings Animals don't have souls Animals don't behave morally Animals are not members of the 'moral community' Animals lack the capacity for free moral judgment Animals don't think St Thomas Aquinas taught that animals acted purely on instinct while human beings engaged in rational thought.
Animals are not really conscious The French philosopher Rene Descartes, and many others, taught that animals were no more than complicated biological robots. Animals were put on earth to serve human beings This view comes originally from the Bible, but probably reflects a basic human attitude towards other species. However, as C. Lewis pointed out: We may find it difficult to formulate a human right of tormenting beasts in terms which would not equally imply an angelic right of tormenting men. Lewis, Vivisection. Animals aren't 'moral' Some of the arguments against animal rights centre on whether animals behave morally.
Rights are unique to human beings rights only have meaning within a moral community only human beings live in a moral community adult mammals don't understand or practice living according to a moral code the differences in the way human beings and adult mammals experience the world are morally relevant therefore rights is a uniquely human concept and only applies to human beings Animals don't behave morally Some argue that since animals don't behave in a moral way they don't deserve moral treatment from other beings.
Animals don't have rights against other animals Another reason for thinking that animals don't behave morally is that even the most enthusiastic supporters of animal rights only argue that animals have rights against human beings, not against other animals. For example, as Mary Warnock put it: May they [animals] be hunted? Moral community This argument states that animals are not members of the 'moral community'. All non-human animals lack the capacity for free moral judgment.
Therefore, non-human animals do not have moral rights. Fundamental rights Animal and human rights boil down to one fundamental right: the right to be treated with respect as an individual with inherent value. Philosophers have a traditional way of expressing this: Animals with rights must be treated as ends in themselves; they should not be treated by others as means to achieve their ends. The problem of 'marginal people' The phrase 'marginal people' or 'marginal human beings' is unpleasant.
The argument can be rescued by rewriting it like this: If an individual is a member of a species that lacks the capacity for free moral judgment, then he or she does not have moral rights. All non-human animal species lack the capacity for free moral judgment.
By: John Knight. Publication Date: 27 May A Visual History of the Thylacine. By: Carol Freeman. Publication Date: 23 Aug An Interdisciplinary Exploration. Publication Date: 02 Jun Essays on Dogs and Others. By: Terry Caesar. Publication Date: 16 Mar Volume 6.
Perhaps these organs could one day be used for organ transplants in people, the researchers said. Maybe because reasoning can lead to ideas or personal development. Nakauchi says the approval in Japan will allow him to attack this problem. The Columbia History of Chinese Literature. Throughout past human evolution , hybridization occurred in many different instances, such as cross-breeding between Neanderthals and ancient versions of what are now modern humans. The fox-like creatures known as Kitsune also possess similar powers, and stories abound of them tricking human men into marriage by turning into seductive women. Rather, the mouse might have certain molecular features that are human-like, Parchem said.
Editor s : Manuela S. Rossini and Tom Tyler. Publication Date: 26 Jan A Dog History of Southern Africa. By: Lance van Sittert and Sandra Swart. Publication Date: 30 Oct Volume 4.
Terms human–animal hybrid and animal–human hybrid refer to an entity that incorporates elements from both humans and non-human animals. The human-animal bond is a mutually beneficial and dynamic relationship between people and animals that is influenced by behaviors that are essential to the.
By: Laurence Simmons. Editor s : Philip Armstrong. Publication Date: 31 Mar Volume 3. By: Lisa Kemmerer. Notice that in order for this argument to succeed, it must target properties that admit of degrees. If someone argued that the basis of human equality rested on the possession of a property that did not admit of degrees, it would not follow that some human beings have that property to a stronger degree than others, and the sophisticated inegalitarian would not be justified.
However, most of the properties that are used in order to support the claim that all and only human beings deserve a full and equal moral status are properties that do admit of degrees. Such properties as being human or having human DNA do not admit of degrees, but, as already mentioned, these properties do not seem to be capable of supporting such a moral status.
In order to implement the Principle of Equal Consideration of Interests in the practical sphere, we must be able to determine the interests of the beings that will be affected by our actions, and we must give similar interests similar weight.
Singer concludes that animals can experience pain and suffering by relying on the argument from analogy see the discussion of Cartesian Theories above. Since animals can experience pain and suffering, they have an interest in avoiding pain. These facts require the immediate end to many of our practices according to Singer.
For example, animals that are raised for food in factory farms live lives that are full of unimaginable pain and suffering Singer devotes an entire chapter of his book to documenting these facts. He relies mainly on magazines published by the factory farm business for these facts. Although human beings do satisfy their interests by eating meat, Singer argues that the interests the animals have in avoiding this unimaginable pain and suffering is greater than the interests we have in eating food that tastes good. If we are to apply the Principle of Equal Consideration of Interests, we will be forced to cease raising animals in factory farms for food.
A failure to do so is nothing other than speciesism, or giving preference to the interests of our own species merely because of they are of our species. Singer does not unequivocally claim that we must not eat animals if we are to correctly apply the Principle of Equal Consideration of Interests. Whether we are required to refrain from painlessly killing animals will depend on whether animals have an interest in continuing to exist in the future. In order to have this interest, Singer believes that a being must be able to conceive of itself as existing into the future, and this requires a being to be self-conscious.
Non-self-conscious beings are not harmed by their deaths, according to Singer, for they do not have an interest in continuing to exist into the future. Singer argues that we might be able to justify killing these sorts of beings with The Replaceability Argument. On this line of thought, if we kill a non-self-conscious being that was living a good life, then we have lessened the overall amount of good in the world. This can be made up, however, by bringing another being into existence that can experience similar goods. In other words, non-self-conscious beings are replaceable: killing one can be justified if doing so is necessary to bring about the existence of another.
Since the animals we rear for food would not exist if we did not eat them, it follows that killing these animals can be justified if the animals we rear for food live good lives. However, in order for this line of argumentation to justify killing animals, the animals must not only be non-self-conscious, but they must also live lives that are worth living, and their deaths must be painless. Singer expresses doubts that all of these conditions could be met, and unequivocally claims that they are not met by such places as factory farms.
Singer also condemns most experimentation in which animals are used. He first points out that many of the experiments performed using animal subjects do not have benefits for human beings that would outweigh the pain caused to the animals. For example, experiments used to test cosmetics or other non-necessary products for human beings cannot be justified if we use the Principle of Equal Consideration of Interests.
Singer also condemns experiments that are aimed at preventing or curing human diseases.
If we are prepared to use animal subjects for such experiments, then it would actually be better from a scientific point of view to use human subjects instead, for there would be no question of cross-species comparisons when interpreting the data. If we believe the benefits outweigh the harms, then instead of using animals we should instead use orphaned infants that are severely cognitively disabled.
If we believe that such a suggestion is morally repugnant when human beings are to be used, but morally innocuous when animals are to be used, then we are guilty of speciesism. Likewise, hunting for sport, using animals in rodeos, keeping animals confined in zoos wherein they are not able to engage in their natural activities are all condemned by the use of the Principle of the Equal Consideration of Interests.
Regan argues for the claim that animals have rights in just the same way that human beings do. Regan believes it is a mistake to claim that animals have an indirect moral status or an unequal status, and to then infer that animals cannot have any rights. He also thinks it is a mistake to ground an equal moral status on Utilitarian grounds, as Singer attempts to do. According to Regan, we must conclude that animals have the same moral status as human beings; furthermore, that moral status is grounded on rights, not on Utilitarian principles.
Regan argues for his case by relying on the concept of inherent value. According to Regan, any being that is a subject-of-a-life is a being that has inherent value. A being that has inherent value is a being towards which we must show respect; in order to show respect to such a being, we cannot use it merely as a means to our ends. Instead, each such being must be treated as an end in itself. In other words, a being with inherent value has rights, and these rights act as trumps against the promotion of the overall good.
Regan relies on a version of the Argument from Marginal Cases in arguing for this conclusion. He begins by asking what grounds human rights. He rejects robust views that claim that a being must be capable of representing itself as legitimately pursuing the furtherance of its interests on the grounds that this conception of rights implies that the marginal cases of humanity do not have rights. However, since we think that these beings do have moral rights there must be some other property that grounds these rights.
According to Regan, the only property that is common to both normal adult human beings and the marginal cases is the property of being a subject-of-a-life. A being that is a subject-of-a-life will:. This property is one that all of the human beings that we think deserve rights have; however, it is a property that many animals especially mammals have as well.