UBC Animal Research – Field Trip – pt. 2
Refer below to pt.1 or this rant won’t make sense. (Do I ever?)
So I was slightly dreading the tour.
Obviously I wouldn’t miss such an opportunity for the world, but similar to visiting a poultry operation last year I knew it wouldn’t be an enjoyable experience for me so to speak.
On the one hand, I was pleased to see animals housed together with room to move around and at least SEE the outdoors (though I wouldn’t say their runs were very large. Maybe 6 by 4 feet ish for the pigs and bunnies.) The sheep got to be outside on the grass and the monkeys had a tree to climb.
Compared to many research facilities this is no nightmare.
Compared to how animals are housed in meat production this was paradise.
I mean lets be honest, I’d rather have my back broken for trauma research (they always use pain mitigation) and get to move around and play with pen mates than be stuck in a gestation crate giving birth for my allowed lifespan and NEVER being able to turn around let alone see the sky.
But but but. Does that mean I support animal research?
Not a fucking chance.
You know me better than that.
Hell, I wouldn’t care if these animals were frolicking on a golden pasture until they reached their “humane end point” (and yes ALL animals are euthenized at the end of the experiment.) I just do not agree that animal testing is EVER justified.
And here’s where the utilitarians diverge from the abolitionists. The Peter Singers vs the Tom Regans.
Utilitarian philosophy argues that the utility gained from the research (i.e. the benefit it will provide for many humans and/or animals) justifies the detriment to the individual. One for all.
But honey. I’m not a utilitarian.
I don’t think we can decide on behalf of another being how it is going to spend its time on earth. (Okay I already see the fatal flaws in this argument. What if we’re making a decision that will improve its welfare blah blah blah. Let’s stay on track. We’re talking about animal testing here.)
And you ask. What if I had parkinsons? Would I refuse a treatment because it had been tested on animals?
Certainly not. But that doesn’t mean I think further research should be conducted this way.
And knowing absolutely nothing about medicinal research, I will argue that it can be done. The John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health (ranked #1 in the US) opened the Centre for Alternatives to Animal Testing in 1981 and has had many acheivements including the development of vitro methods now widely used.
Sure, we don’t have alternative methods for everything. BUT MAYBE WE SHOULD BE TRYING TO THINK SOME UP. I bet 40 million could go a long way y’know?
Also. All this effort to look at squirrel fetuses and not enough time making the thinker think about why we need to know in the first place. Human curiousity is boundless, but where do we draw the line? This is an animal’s whole life we’re talking about. Just so we can know a little more about them?
aaaaand I’m done.