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Essay on Animal Rights

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One of the most touchy aspects of our relationship with animals is the use of animals in laboratory sciences. Some manufactures of cosmetics and household products still conduct painful and useless tests on live animals, even though no law requires them to do so. Some people, called anti-vivisectionists, are at one extreme in their concern. They want an abolition of all experiments on live animals. At the other extreme there are those who say that it is quite all right for us to do whatever we like to animals. They say that God gave us such a right, since it is written in the bible (Genesis 1:26) that man has dominion over all creatures. If what is done to the animal may produce something of educational value, adds to scientific knowledge, or can help improve human health, they argue that it is worth killing animals or subjecting them to painful experiments. I believe that the unnecessary testing of animals is inhumane and unethical when alternative methods are available.

The anti-vivisectionists say we should allow no experiments on animals and the animal utilitarians, or vivisectionists, claim that we can do anything to animals if it is for the ultimate good of humanity. Perhaps they are both wrong. Much can be learned from treating animals that are already sick or injured in testing new life-saving drugs and surgical techniques. Animals, as well as people benefit from new discoveries. But is it right to take perfectly healthy animals and harm them to find cures for human illnesses, many of which we bring on ourselves by poisoning the environment, eating the wrong kinds of foods, and by not adopting a healthy active life-style?

Do people have the right to do what ever they like to perfectly healthy animals? Do we have the right to continue doing experiments over and over again in a needless repetition and a waste of animals if no new information is going to be gained. Animals suffer unnecessarily and their lives are pointlessly wasted. If the issue were simple, animal experimentation might never have become so controversial.

Each year in the United States an estimated 20-70 million animals-from cats, dogs and primates, to rabbits, rats and mice-suffer and die in the name of research. Animal tests for the safety of cosmetics, household products and chemicals are the least justifiable. Animals have doses of shampoo, hair spray, and deodorant dripped int...


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...r laurels. Many companies still say that animal tests are the most likely to hold up in court if a human is injured by a cosmetic or household product and, for that reason, they will struggle to hold on to animal-based research. We need to continue to to find new and improved alternatives so that we may preserve the lives and dignity of animals, but can also ensure the consumer of product safety. Many manufactures such as Avon, Revlon, and Estee Lauder have ceased animal tests. the fact that companies are supporting alternatives and reduce animal usage is a good sign but the fight is clearly not over.

This project has educated my family and I to be more caring consumers and we will use are buying power to pressure companies into banning animal testing within the commercial market. I have learned to write to companies that still test products on animals and let them know that I would not be buying their products and urge them to choose alternative instead. We must remember unseen they suffer, unheard they cry, in agony they linger, in loneliness they die. You can make a difference, you can be their voice.

Footnotes
1. Facts About the LD50 Test: The Humane Society of the U.S.,p.2


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