This week on Think a Bit Thursday, we have Rise of the Planet of the Apes. In it, a super-intelligent monkey, Caesar, leads a rebellion of apes against the humans. He is genetically altered from birth, and he was the child of an ape being tested on in a lab. The question that this movie brings up is: Is animal testing right?
How I got the idea for this topic is interesting. Just recently, there was a bird who decided to set up camp and build a nest in the soffit of the balcony in my backyard. Soon, more nests started to spring up. I decided that I needed to deal with the bird, before my backyard became a flying animal daycare. I took a broom and slowly raised to so that it would be level with the bird. The broom spooked it and it flew away in a dash, nearly flying into me. Now that the bird was out, I was going to take down the nest with the broom. I swept it off of the soffit and what happened is not what I expected. The nest fell to the ground, and along with it, four eggs. Small eggs. I heard them splat, and the eggs lie cracked open, puddles of blood around the eggs. I honestly did feel terrible. I killed four birds and drove away its mother. Now that I look back at it, the bird didn’t do anything to actually disturb me. It didn’t attack me or harass me, never took any food, nothing. Those four birds that I killed…are their lives worth less than a human’s? Are we a dominant race just because we’re intelligent?
When we test on animals, we are trying to improve our lives by neglecting animals’ lives. We are prioritizing ourselves above the animals. We are giving ourselves more value. An animal life is worth less than a human life. Clearly, this is the mindset that humans have. The fact that we eat other animals is proof to that statement. We wouldn’t eat something that is equal to us, or above. We kill animals because we see them as rightfully ours.
Should we see animal lives as equal to ours, and practice other ways of research rather than animal testing, or see them as ours, and use them to improve our lives? When I say use them, I don’t mean kill them off and waste their lives. There should never be a circumstance where we kill animals to the point of driving them extinct. I believe that we should fight to keep animals living, and reproducing, and doing their own thing in their habitat. But that does not mean we cannot take some and use them to improve our lives. How accurate animal testing is is not a concern. The question is, “Is it morally correct?” I don’t want to discuss if they are treated humanely while being tested on, because there are facts from both sides of the discussion that can counter each other. If the tests are humane, I think that they should be conducted, and we have every right to carry them out.
We don’t usually consider ourselves animals because it brings on a sense of demotion. Animals are not seen as equals to humans. We don’t hesitate to swat a fly. Why? Because it doesn’t own property. It doesn’t pay taxes. It doesn’t talk. It is not human. It is not intelligent. We’re unaware of the world that the fly lives in. We don’t see it communicating or raising a family. We cannot relate to it. We can speak and coincide together, therefore we are the intelligent race. We are the most powerful.
This mindset may be different for those who own a pet that they are attached to. I had a fish once. His name was Flounder. Flounder died after a few weeks. After that I never had another pet. If you’re attached to a dog or a cat or a bird or whatever pet you may have, you are probably not for animal testing. That is because you look at your pet and see them as family. But animals are animals. A pet is an animal. I still believe that animal testing is correct, as long as it is done humanely. What do you think about animal testing? The question this week is, “Is animal testing right?”
Leave your thoughts in the comments, along with any questions you may have for the upcoming Q and A.