J. J. C. Smart on Ethical Progress

Animal Ethics

If there has been progress in ethics recently it has been through the realization of some ethicists that animal happiness and suffering has to be considered equally with that of human beings. Smart , "Ethics and Science," Philosophy 56 [October 1981]: 449-65, at 450 [footnotes omitted

Always Question a Scientist

Critter News

This statement is mainly motivated by a recent conversation with someone who has a science degree (I think it's biology), but who actually works for a clinical testing company. One of the issues raised by a member was that we need to listen to "science" more and that science will save us. I raised the point that science does not solve everything. Science does not solve everything. Science is only as useful as the hands in which it lies.

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The Animals We Use

Animal Person

Activism Ethics Food and Drink Greyhound Matters Language ScienceAfter failing miserably at a long pamphlet in 2007, I decided to shorten it by 50% and focus on a different audience: people who use animals. I think part of the original work's problem was that it was too ambitious--not to mention expensive to produce--and everything suffered.

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Meat, Cancer, and the Cumulative Case for Ethical Vegetarianism

Animal Ethics

Ethical vegetarianism is the thesis that killing and eating animals is morally wrong whenever equally nutritious plant-based alternatives are available. The case for ethical vegetarianism starts with several uncontroversial premises. The study was published in the December 2007 issue of the Public Library of Science’s journal PLOS Medicine. And there are ethical reasons for becoming vegetarian. Ethical synergy at work

Slate on Pepper: Stolen for Research

Animal Person

Pepper, the stolen dog who changed American science ," thankfully wasn't called Pepper, the stolen dog that changed American science," so that was an encouraging sign. Pepper also represents a turning point in science, from an earlier age when animals for experiment would be plucked from the road or the river, to a new era of standardized, mass-produced organisms that can be shipped right to the laboratory door. Tags: Economics Ethics

On Altruism and Compassion in Economic Systems

Animal Person

Next year's Mind and Life Conference is called "Altruism and Compassion in Economic Systems: A Dialogue Between Economics, Neuroscience and Contemplative Sciences." What have the sciences to contribute - if anything at all?" Tags: Current Affairs Economics Ethics Gray Matters Language Religion

On Timelines

Animal Person

Moving people along is more art than science, and for some people it's far more emotion-based than logic-based. Tags: Activism Ethics Language The idea that each person has their own timeline for converting to veganism met with the following comment from All Means Justifiable : "I have to say that writing "everyone has their own timeline" is a sentence I personally don't like to hear. Because even if it is true (in a way), its grounds are immoral."

Deconstructing Slate's "Pepper" Series

Animal Person

For those who didn't read the five-part Slate series " Pepper, the stolen dog who changed American science " by Daniel Engber , I recommend it for the history, but also for the misconceptions and assumptions that you might want to discuss on the Facebook discussion about the series. There's a vague sense that perhaps he cares about the dogs or thinks that what he does to them might present an ethical dilemma, but the overwhelming feeling is that it's all worth it.

Push Land-Grant Universities Out of the Meat Industry

Animal Person

Animal science” – distinct from zoology, the science of Earth’s millions of animal species – is what LGUs call meat-industry courses, including slaughtering animals, making ice cream, the full range of meat-linked endeavor. But, says Cantor, “’animal science’ rejects scientific knowledge: that humans are natural herbivores and did not evolve as hunters as formerly believed; eating from animals is linked to the most widespread and devastating chronic diseases; and more.”

On the Land Grant University Meat Problem

Animal Person

Tags: Activism Current Affairs Economics Ethics

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Sri Lanka Attempts to Establish Animal Research Guidelines

Critter News

Last Monday (January 18, 2010), this country reached a milestone with regard to animal research when a booklet on the ‘Guidelines for Ethics Review of Research Proposals Involving Animals in Sri Lanka’, was launched at a simple ceremony held at the Colombo Medical Faculty presided over by the Vice Chancellor of the University of Colombo, Prof. Harsha Seneviratne and the faculty’s Ethics Review Committee Chairman Prof. From the Sunday Times in Sri Lanka.

Growing Number of Scientists Question Animal Research

Critter News

They're not necessarily questioning the ethics, but the efficacy. The feud between animal rights activists and researchers is among the bitterest in science. Indeed, it often isn't even the best science: New drugs that show great promise in mice, for example, often confer zero benefit to humans, or even prove harmful. This is an excellent article that appeared in the Boston Globe last week.

Pam Anderson Urges End to India's Animal Testing

Critter News

Deka, director of All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) after watching a video allegedly exposing animal cruelty at the New Delhi centre. "It It broke my heart to see the suffering that is documented in the enclosed video", wrote Anderson, in a letter sent on behalf of People for Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA). I don't always know how I personally feel about Pamela Anderson, but I can't argue with her (non-acting) work.

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"Earthlings" Available as Audio Book

Critter News

Earthlings is a feature-length documentary about how dependent human beings are on animals, primarily in five key areas: pets, food, clothing, entertainment and science. "Earthlings" is a film about animal abuse narrated by Joaquin Phoenix. I've never watched it, but heard it talked about on a vegan podcast. It's supposed to be so intense, it turns people into vegans (Ellen DeGeneres for one.) For those who can't handle the visuals, now it's available as an audio book.

From the Mailbag

Animal Ethics

Hey there, Just discovered your nice blog on animals and ethics. www.nytimes.com/dotearth I'm going to add Animal Ethics to my blogroll. Revkin The New York Times / Science 620 Eighth Ave., I've touched on relevant issues off and on, but most specifically in a 2004 piece on arguments for and against whale hunts. I've linked back to that story in my latest post on Japan v Greenpeace saga on my Dot Earth blog.

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Puerto Rico Plans Huge Primate Breeding Facility to Supply Researchers

Critter News

In 2007, the National Academy of Sciences published a report calling on the Environmental Protection Agency to make a fundamental shift in its toxicity testing strategies away from testing on mammals and focusing increasingly on new, more accurate—not to mention, more ethical—in vitro toxicity testing. I'm behind on my email and only just read this action alert from the Animal Legal Defense Fund.

J. J. C. Smart on the Moral Elite

Animal Ethics

This last implies of course an improvement in ethics, as opposed to morality, as I have defined it, unless we already understand 'Do as you would be done by' as applicable to whales, cattle, chickens, and so on, as it is to human beings.

From the Mailbag

Animal Ethics

Hello Keith: I recently completed a documentary on the science, ethics, and politics of animal agriculture entitled "Beyond Closed Doors." The film contains personal interviews with prominent professionals such as Dr. Temple Grandin, Dr. Bernard Rollin, Dr. John Webster, Steve Wise, and many others. I mention this because we are receiving a fair amount of requests for the documentary for use in education at the university level.

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W. V. Quine (1908-2000) on Altruism

Animal Ethics

Moreover, we are prone to extrapolate; extrapolation was always intrinsic to induction, that primitive propensity that is at the root of all science. Extrapolation in science, however, is under the welcome restraint of stubborn fact: failures of prediction.

Should I Stay or Should I Go?

Critter News

She is the "science" one and likes to call herself an "independent" on the political landscape. She said that there were guidelines on how to treat animals and that, in medical ethics, they are considered "sacrifices." So, I belong to this book group of 5 to 7 women. I've been with the group for a while and it's not bad. I do enjoy reading books and discussing them, but I have a quandary that I'm going to post about.

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From Today's New York Times

Animal Ethics

It is our job as advocates for animals to promote the ethical and scientific arguments that advance science without harming animals—within the parameters of a democratic process in which the truth, not violence, prevails. To the Editor: The recent terrorist attacks on scientists (“ Firebombings at Homes of 2 California Researchers ,” news article, Aug.

On Letting Your Emotions Rule the Day

Animal Person

Finally, Scott writes that "we have the responsibility to set aside emotion as much as possible and make rational, science-based decisions on policy in an effort to balance the concerns of all involved.". and "make rational, science-based" and logic-based decisions "in an effort to balance the [genuine, life or death] concerns of all involved" (surely Scott cannot claim to be doing that). Tags: Activism Current Affairs Economics Ethics Language

40 Ways to Help Lab Animals

Critter News

This rapidly growing site is to be a global resource on alternative methods, the 3Rs (replacement, reduction, and refinement), animal ethics, and animal care, with hyperlinks to related Web sites and databases. For sleuthing on animal experimentation, you will want to visit a library with good science holdings. Thanks to Patty at Animal Rights-Do Whatever is Necessary for reposting this list of 40 ways to help lab animals. I especially like these suggestions.

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Dogs as Smart as 2-yr-old Kids

Animal Person

When I saw the Live Science article about dogs being as smart as 2-year-old kids I knew that if there were any talk of ranking, my beloved greyhounds would be at the less-desirable end of the list (not from personal experience, but from reputation), and I also knew that there would be a whiff of speciesism. Tags: Current Affairs Ethics Greyhound Matters Language

From Today's New York Times

Animal Ethics

22): Mr. Steiner might feel less lonely as an ethical vegan—he says he has just five vegan friends—if he recognized that he has allies in mere vegetarians (like me), ethical omnivores and even carnivores. 22, 2009 To the Editor: I am an ethical vegan.

On "Imposing" Our Beliefs on Our Children

Animal Person

As far as atheism goes, I'd rather my child have a healthy skepticism that is fact driven and science driven. I'm raising my daughter with a clear, stated ethic: Respect other beings, as no one exists for your benefit.

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From Today's New York Times

Animal Ethics

2, 2009 The writer is dean of the College of Natural, Applied and Health Sciences at Kean University. 1, 2009 To the Editor: As an ethics instructor who aims to inspire my students to think about the connections between their values and daily practices, I found Nicolette Hahn Niman’s article disappointing. Niman’s argument amounts to lowering an ethical standard to fit the demands of our meat-centric culture and Western privilege.

Introducing Myself

Animal Ethics

I had a strong interest in science because of its reliance on reason and skepticism, which struck me as very good tools for truth seeking (which is ultimately what I am interested in). When I came across Philosophy, I immediately saw that it was the tree from which the branch of science had grown. Currently, I am very interested in social and political philosophy and ethical issues. Hi there, I'm Jonathan.

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From Today's New York Times

Animal Ethics

5, 2009 The writer worked from 1978 to 1990 at Consumers Union as a health and science writer for Consumer Reports Magazine. 4, 2009 To the Editor: I have been a strict vegetarian most of my life, and, as such, I have never lacked reasons—ethical, economic and health-related—to continue this lifestyle. To the Editor: Re “ The Burger That Shattered Her Life: Trail of E. Coli Shows Flaws in Ground Beef Inspection System ” (front page, Oct. 4): Your article about E.

Global Warming

Animal Ethics

Global warming is an animal ethics issue. According to the Post story, computer modeling conducted by Andreas Schmittner (College of Oceanic and Atmospheric Sciences, Oregon State University) indicates if we continue "business as usual" and do nothing to curb greenhouse gas emissions, average temperatures are likely to increase 7.0°F As the planet warms, fragile habitats that countless animal species depend on for survival will be destroyed.

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