Religious Studies: Do Animals Have Rights?

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What do Christians believe humans are made in? What does this mean we are?
The image of God, so we are the most important part of creation.
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What do Christians believe God put us in control of? What is this opinion based on?
All other living things. Genesis 1:26 - describes how God gave humans power over all other things.
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What do most Christians believe animals don't have? What does this mean?
That they don't have a soul, so they cannot have the same relationship with God as humans. Therefore, some people believe that their lives have less importance than those of humans.
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How do most Christians see their role in relations to the natural world?
Not as 'rulers' to control and exploit but as stewards with a responsibility to care for and respect God's creation.
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What did Jesus teach?
That God cares about the smallest creatures and that not one sparrow will fall to the ground without God knowing about it.
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What did Jesus stress that humans are worth more than?
Sparrows, as God knows every hair on their head.
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What do Christians believe they should try and follow?
The example of a loving God, showing care and compassion.
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Even though many Christians believe animals don't have a soul and aren't aware of their existence in the same way as humans, what do they think it isn't acceptable to do? Why?
Be cruel to animals, as this would be a failure in their responsibility as stewards of God's creation. They would be showing a lack of respect for creation, and therefore God.
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Give three examples of why Christians recognise that humans can benefit from experiments on animals.
Animal experiments led directly to the development of dialysis machines to treat kidney failure and the development of drugs to prevent rejection in organ transplants. Also for vaccines, e.g tuberculosis which kills 3 million every year.
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In what circumstances do Christians think it is acceptable to use animal experimentation? Under what circumstance?
For medical research if it is essential for the good humans. However, unnecessary suffering must be avoided.
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Why does a Christian believe that unnecessary suffering must be avoided in animal experimentation?
Because causing pain to animals would not be compatible with living according to the teachings of Jesus.
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What would most Christians argue about animal testing?
It would be acceptable if it could result in a cure for a serious disease, provided as little suffering as possible was caused to the animals.
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In 1995, who grew a human ear in the back of a mouse?
Dr Vacanti, a transplant surgeon.
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What happened when photos emerged of Dr Vacanti's experiment?
Outrage among members of the animal rights and pro-life groups who thought the mouse had been genetically engineered.
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What was the reality about Dr Vacanti's experiment?
The growth (ear) originated from cow cartilage (no human tissue was used) that was transplanted into the mouse, and wasn't the result of genetic engineering.
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What did Dr Vacanti say about his experiment?
The same technique might make it possible to grow a liver, saving the lives of people who die waiting for a liver transplant.
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What does the possibility of genetically modifying the bodies of animals to grow spare parts for humans also mean? What are the issues raised with this?
That it is possible for scientists to create hybrid creatures. However what are the problems of such developments? What rights would they have?
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Card 2

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What do Christians believe God put us in control of? What is this opinion based on?

Back

All other living things. Genesis 1:26 - describes how God gave humans power over all other things.

Card 3

Front

What do most Christians believe animals don't have? What does this mean?

Back

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Card 4

Front

How do most Christians see their role in relations to the natural world?

Back

Preview of the front of card 4

Card 5

Front

What did Jesus teach?

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