The Treatment of Animals
The Treatment of Animals
Medical testing using animals
Arguments to support the use of animals:
- Lots of animals are killed to be eaten, why not a few more to be put to decent use?
- 5% of medical research tests are used on animals
- There are rules and regulations to protect the animals
- 8m animals are killed for pest control / year
- Insulin for diabetes saved 10 million animal and human lives
- Penicillin & other antibiotics (tested on mice) over 50m prescriptions of these in UK / year
- Kidney transplants (tested on animals) 2000 a year
- Polio vaccine 1/4 of m lives saved world wide / year
- Cancer treatment went from 1/10- 8/10 survival rate
- There aren't many other alternatives
- Cheaper than compensating human deaths
- Vaccines found saving many lives from curable diseases
- Monkeys made life support for premature babies possible
Medical testing using animals
Arguments against the use of animals:
- Animal testing tells us about the effects on animals, not humans, therefore results could be misleading
- Many humans have died from drugs tested on animals who showed no dramatic side effects
- Tested animals endure a long and painful death, whereas food animals endure a quicker death
- Penicillin is deadly to guinea pigs and hamsters
- Aspirin causes birth defects in animals, such as monkeys, dogs, cats, rats, mice & guinea pigs
- Opren an arthritis drugs worked on rats, but had 3500 reports of side effects and 61 deaths
- 3m animals / year are killed in British labs.
- 2/3 of animals not under anaesthetics
- 5-25% of the side effects are shown in animals
- 'Cystic fibrosis mice' are created to have poor lungs and to die prematurely
Should a Christian eat meat?
Adam and Eve are told "Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed which is upon the face of the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit if a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be meat"- Suggests Christians should be vegetarians.
Then God blessed Noah and his sons, saying to them, "Be fruitful and increase in number and fill the earth. The fear and dread of you will fall upon all the beasts of the earth...everything that moves shall be food for you. Just as I gave you green plants, I now give you everything. But you must not eat meat that has its lifeblood still in it"- contrasting answer, perhaps giving humans power as reward, or a last resort
How should Christians treat animals?
1997, Dr Jay Vicanti & his team grew on ear on the back of a mouse. For Christians there is no agreed teaching on the treatment of animals.
Karl Bath C20th:
- since God became a man in the human form of Jesus, humans are more important than animals
Thomas Aquinas C13th:
- An animal cannot think or reason
- A lesser form of Humans
- Animals were created for our use, so do not have rights
- no souls
Humphrey Primatt C17th vicar:
- His ideas led to the creation of the RSPCA
- "Pain is pain, whether inflicted on man or beast"
- no animal should have pain inflicted
Albert Schweizer C20th- Nobel prize winner:
- All life is sacred, animal life included
Evidence showing humans are not elite to animals:
- Crows have proved able to bend a wire, create a hook and fish.
- Kanzi an ape has proved able to communicate through pictures
- Elephants, apes and dolphins are able to recognize themselves in a mirror
- Elephants grieve death
- Apes have a sense of sharing
- Animals are fully conscious
- They can have a personality
- They can look after themselves and other species
- They are able to communicate
Islamic teachings: The animal world
Responsibility:- Khalifa- Stewardship
Allah has handed the planet over to mankind for them to look after and cherish. Goes towards the day of judgement
Islam teaches that mercy and compassion is to be shown to every creature for Allah loves everything he has made
Cruelty to animals is totally forbidden in Islam
The prophet forbade any sport which involved animals fighting
Fox hunting, badger/bear/dog baiting and others are condemned
Prejudice & Discrimination
Prejudice:- Pre-judging, making up one's mind before proper examination of the facts. Based on feelings, attitudes or ideas that people may have about something
Stereotypes:- A pre-conceived and over simplified idea of a person/group/race/ethnic community broken down when people see individuals with their own strengths and weaknesses.
Discrimination:- Is action taken against different groups because it prejudice- "Prejudice in action" Discrimination can be both negative and positive. We discriminate against people when we don't give them a fair chance at getting a job. On the other hand we can discriminate fairly for groups who may otherwise lose out
Reasons for prejudice and discrimination
REASONS FOR PREJUDICE & DISCRIMINATION
Ignorance- People often reject and stereotype those they don't understand
Historical background- Groups are blamed for action in the past (Germans WW1/2)
Going with the crowd- People seek security in groups, others became outsiders
Fear- People threatened by something different and new
Scapegoating- People often pick others to blame when something goes wrong
Selfishness and greed- Sometimes a group persecutes another for its own ends (treatment of black slaves)
What injustices still exist today?
- In 2003 a study carried out in Chicago showed that job applicants with "black sounding names" were 50% less likely to get a job that those with "white sounding names"
- In America, African Americans are 3 times more likely to be pulled over and searched whilst driving than white drivers
- In June 2009, black unemployment was 15.3%, whereas white was 8.8%
- In 2010 in Italy a wave of racist attacks against black farmers left 70 injured
Martin Luther King JR
Born: January 15th 1929 in Atlanta Georgia
Martin Luther king was a pastor of a Baptist church in Montgomery Alabama by the age of 25 (1948)
In 1955 he led the Montgomery bus boycott, which ended all racial segregation on buses in Montgomery
In 1963 he led a March to Washington on 28th August and delivered his "I have a dream speech" from the Lincoln memorial with hope to end racial segregation in school, get civil rights legislation, end to racial discrimination in employment, protection for civil rights workers, a $2 minimum wage for all workers and a self government for Washington DC
1964 he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize
1968 he was assassinated on his hotel balcony on April 4th at 6:01 pm. James Earl Ray was convicted of murder however, King's family believe it was a government conspiracy.
Christian teachings on Prejudice and Discriminatio
The meaning of life as a Christian is to love god and one's neighbor- to achieve salvation and get to heaven, to live like Jesus.
The Good Samaritan- Luke 10 illustrates the golden rule
Let heart speak to heart (Pope Benedict 2010)
Jesus' message was "People are all your neighbours, all people are to be loved & respected. People from different races and backgrounds should learn to love eachother and live in harmony"
Jesus opposed discrimination, he healed a Roman servant even though they were disliked
Saint Paul expressed Christian attitude-
"There is no such thing as a Jew and a greek, slave and a free man, male and female, for you are all one person in Christ" Galatians 3:28
Prejudice is sinning (James 2)
Christian church has a race and community relations comity
Islam teachings on prejudice and discrimination
Muslims believe that all people are equally God's creations. (Qu'ran 49:13) "All God's creations are His family" (Hadith)
The great variety of races, colours, languages of human beings is evidence of God's wonderful creativity. "And among His signs is the creation of the the heaven and earth and the variation in your language and colours" (Qu'ran 30:22)
The Ummah (worldwide community of Muslims) is a multi racial/cultural and lingual mix of Muslims who are all united by the 5 pillars
When Muslims go on Hajj they all dress the same to show equality and devotion to God, these clothes they also wear when they die.
"Whether male or female whoever in faith does good work for the sake of God will be granted a good life and rewarded with greater reward" (Qu'ran 16:97)