More than twenty years after its original publication, The Case for AnimalRights is an acknowledged classic of moral philosophy, and its author is recognized as the intellectual leader of the animalrights movement. In a new and fully considered preface, Regan responds to his critics and defends the book's revolutionary position.
For many people "animalrights" suggests campaigns against factory farms, vivisection or other aspects of our woeful treatment of animals. Zoopolis moves beyond this familiar terrain, focusing not on what we must stop doing to animals, but on how we can establish positive and just relationships with different types of animals.
This book offers a powerful response to what Varner calls the "two dogmas of environmental ethics"--the assumptions that animalrights philosophies and anthropocentric views are each antithetical to sound environmental policy. Allowing that every living organism has interests which ought, other things being equal, to be protected, Varner contends that some interests take priority over others. He defends both a sentientist principle giving priority to the lives of organisms with conscious desires and an anthropocentric principle giving priority to (...) certain very inclusive interests which only humans have. He then shows that these principles not only comport with but provide significant support for environmental goals. (shrink)
This article reports original research conducted among animalrights activists and elites in Switzerland and the United States, and the finding that activism functioned in activists' and elites' lives like religious belief. The study used reference sampling to select Swiss and American informants. Various articles and activists have identified both latent and manifest quasi-religious components in the contemporary movement. Hence, the research followed upon these data and anecdotes and tested the role of activism in adherents' lives. Using extensive (...) interviews, the research discovered that activists and elites conform to the five necessary components of Yinger's definition of functional religion: intense and memorable conversion experiences, newfound communities of meaning, normative creeds, elaborate and well-defined codes of behavior, and cult formation. The article elaborates on that schema in the context of animalrights belief, elucidates the deeply meaningful role of activism within a filigree of meaning, and concludes that the movement is facing schismatic forces not dissimilar to redemptive and religious movements. (shrink)
Cass Sunstein and Martha Nussbaum bring together an all-star cast of contributors to explore the legal and political issues that underlie the campaign for animalrights and the opposition to it. Addressing ethical questions about ownership, protection against unjustified suffering, and the ability of animals to make their own choices free from human control, the authors offer numerous different perspectives on animalrights and animal welfare. They show that whatever one's ultimate conclusions, the relationship between (...) human beings and nonhuman animals is being fundamentally rethought. This book offers a state-of-the-art treatment of that rethinking. (shrink)
It is a curious fact about mainstream discussions of animalrights that they are dominated by consequentialist defenses thereof, when consequentialism in general has been on the wane in other areas of moral philosophy. In this paper, I describe an alternative, non‐consequentialist ethical framework and argue that it grants animals more expansive rights than consequentialist proponents of animalrights typically grant. The cornerstone of this non‐consequentialist framework is the thought that the virtuous agent is s/he (...) who has the stable and dominating disposition to treat all conscious animals, including non‐human conscious animals, as ends and not mere means. (shrink)
Animalrights and moral theories -- Arguing for one's species -- Utilitarianism and animals : Peter Singer's case for animal liberation -- Tom Regan : animalrights as natural rights -- Virtue ethics and animals -- Contractarianism and animalrights -- Animal minds.
A combined psychological-epistemological study of the blocks that stand in the way of the human recognition of the sentience and legal rights of non-human animals. Originally published in the Lewis and Clark law journal, Animal Law, and subsequently translated into German and into Portuguese.
This volume provides a general overview of the basic ethical and philosophical issues of animalrights. It asks questions such as: Do animals have moral rights? If so, what does this mean? What sorts of mental lives do animals have, and how should we understand welfare? By presenting models for understanding animals' moral status and rights, and examining their mental lives and welfare, David DeGrazia explores the implications for how we should treat animals in connection with (...) our diet, zoos, and research. AnimalRights distinguishes itself by combining intellectual rigor with accessibility, offering a distinct moral voice with a non-polemical tone. (shrink)
Regan provides the theoretical framework that grounds a responsible pro-animalrights perspective, and ultimately explores how asking moral questions about other animals can lead to a better understanding of ourselves.
In this paper I extend liberal property rights theory to nonhuman animals.I sketch an outline of a nonhuman animal property rights regime and argue that both proponents of animalrights and ecological holism ought to accept nonhuman animal property rights. To conclude I address a series of objections.
In this paper I extend orthodox just-war terrorism theory to the phenomenon of extremist violence on behalf of nonhuman animals.I argue that most documented cases of so-called animalrights extremism do not quality as terrorism.
Animalrights positions face the ‘predator problem’: the suggestion that if the rights of nonhuman animals are to be protected, then we are obliged to interfere in natural ecosystems to protect prey from predators. Generally, rather than embracing this conclusion, animal ethicists have rejected it, basing this objection on a number of different arguments. This paper considers but challenges three such arguments, before defending a fourth possibility. Rejected are Peter Singer’s suggestion that interference will lead to (...) more harm than good, Sue Donaldson and Will Kymlicka’s suggestion that respect for nonhuman sovereignty necessitates non-interference in normal circumstances, and Alasdair Cochrane’s solution based on the claim that predators cannot survive without killing prey. The possibility defended builds upon Tom Regan’s suggestion that predators, as moral patients but not moral agents, cannot violate the rights of their prey, and so the rights of the prey, while they do exist, do not call for intervention. This idea is developed by a consideration of how moral agents can be more or less responsible for a given event, and defended against criticisms offered by thinkers including Alasdair Cochrane and Dale Jamieson. (shrink)
The question of the nature and extent of our moral obligations to non-human animals has featured prominently in recent moral debate. This book defends the novel position that a contradictarian moral theory can be used to justify the claim that animals possess a substantial and wide-ranging set of moral rights. Critiquing the rival accounts of Peter Singer and Tom Regan, this study shows how an influential form of the social contract idea can be extended to make sense of the (...) concept of animalrights. (shrink)
Should people who believe in animalrights think that abortion is wrong? Should pro-lifers accept animalrights? If you think it’s wrong to kill fetuses to end pregnancies, should you also think it’s wrong to kill animals to, say, eat them? If you, say, oppose animal research, should you also oppose abortion? -/- Some argue ‘yes’ and others argue ‘no’ to either or both sets of questions. The correct answer, however, seems to be, ‘it depends’: (...) it depends on why someone accepts animalrights, and why someone thinks abortion is wrong: it depends on their reasons. (shrink)
The present study examined the relationship among religious denomination, fundamentalism, belief about human origins, gender, and support for animalrights. Eighty-two college undergraduates filled out a set of 3 questionnaires: The Religious Fundamentalism Scale , beliefs about human origins , and the AnimalRights Scale . Because conservative Protestants and fundamentalists adhere to religious doctrine that espouses a discontinuity between humans and other species, the study predicted they would have lower support for animalrights. (...) Further, proponents of evolution—who tend to view species as interconnected—would advocate animalrights more so than creationists and believers of intelligent design theory. Results supported the hypotheses. A multiple regression analysis revealed that the religious variables and gender were significant in predicting support for animalrights. (shrink)
In this essay I argue that the evolutionary and comparative study of nonhuman animal (hereafter animal) cognition in a wide range of taxa by cognitive ethologists can readily inform discussions about animal protection and animalrights. However, while it is clear that there is a link between animal cognitive abilities and animal pain and suffering, I agree with Jeremy Bentham who claimed long ago the real question does not deal with whether individuals can (...) think or reason but rather with whether or not individuals can suffer. One of my major goals will be to make the case that the time has come to expand. The Great Ape Project (GAP) to The Great Ape/Animal Project (GA/AP) and to take seriously the moral status and rights of all animals by presupposing that all individuals should be admitted into the Community of Equals. I also argue that individuals count and that it is essential to avoid being speciesist cognitivists; it really doesn't matter whether ‘dogs ape’ or whether ‘apes dog’ when taking into account the worlds of different individual animals. Narrow-minded primatocentrism and speciesism must be resisted in our studies of animal cognition and animal protection and rights. Line-drawing into ‘lower’ and ‘higher’ species is a misleading speciesist practice that should be vigorously resisted because not only is line-drawing bad biology but also because it can have disastrous consequences for how animals are viewed and treated. Speciesist line-drawing also ignores within species individual differences. (shrink)
In this paper I bring together self-defense theory and animalrights theory. The extension of self-defense theory to animals poses a serious problem for proponents of animalrights. If, in line with orthodox self-defense theory, a person is a legitimate target for third-party self-defensive violence if they are responsible for a morally unjustified harm without an acceptable excuse; and if, in line with animalrights theory, people that consume animal products are responsible for (...) unjustified harm to animals, then many millions, if not billions, of otherwise law abiding and decent people will be legitimate targets for third-party self-defense violence on behalf of animals. I call this problem: the multiple inappropriate targets problem for animalrights. (shrink)
Questions on "animalrights" in a cross-national survey conducted in 1993 provide an opportunity to compare the applicability to this issue of two theories of the socio-political changes summed up in "postmodernity": Inglehart's thesis of "postmaterialist values" and Franklin's synthesis of theories of late modernity. Although Inglehart seems not to have addressed human-nonhuman animal relations, it is reasonable to apply his theory of changing values under conditions of "existential security" to "animalrights." Inglehart's postmaterialism thesis (...) argues that new values emerged within specific groups because of the achievement of material security. Although emphasizing human needs, they shift the agenda toward a series of lifestyle choices that favor extending lifestyle choices, rights, and environmental considerations. Franklin's account of nonhuman animals and modern cultures stresses a generalized "ontological insecurity." Under postmodern conditions, changes to core aspects of social and cultural life are both fragile and fugitive. As neighborhood, community,family,and friendship relations lose their normative and enduring qualities, companion animals increasingly are drawn in to those formerly exclusive human emotional spaces.With a method used by Inglehart and a focus in countries where his postmaterialist effects should be most evident, this study derives and tests different expectations from the theories, then tests them against data from a survey supporting Inglehart's theory. His theory is not well supported. We conclude that its own anthropocentrism limits it and that the allowance for hybrids of nature-culture in Franklin's account offers more promise for a social theory of animalrights in changing times. (shrink)
Mark Rowlands defends a Rawlsian argument for animalrights, according to which animals have rights because we would assign them rights when deciding on the principles of morality from behind a veil of ignorance. Rowlands’s argument depends on a non-standard interpretation of the veil of ignorance, according to which we cannot know whether we are human or non-human on the other side of the veil. Rowlands claims that his interpretation of the veil is more consistent with (...) a core commitment of Rawlsian justice—the intuitive equality principle—than either Rawls or his critics realize. Here I argue that Rawls is not committed to the intuitive equality principle, as Rowlands articulates it, and hence Rowlands’s argument is in fact only superficially Rawlsian. Furthermore, Rowlands’s intuitive equality principle is dubious on its own terms, and thus a poor principle on which to base a case for animalrights. (shrink)
Jasper and Poulsen have long argued that moral shocks are critical for recruitment in the nonhuman animalrights movement. Building on this, Decoux argues that the abolitionist faction of the nonhuman animalrights movement fails to recruit members because it does not effectively utilize descriptions of suffering. However, the effectiveness of moral shocks and subsequent emotional reactions has been questioned. This article reviews the literature surrounding the use of moral shocks in social movements. Based on this (...) review, it is suggested that the exploitation of emotional reactions to depictions of suffering can sometimes prove beneficial to recruitment, but successful use is contextually rooted in preexisting frameworks, ideology, and identity. It is concluded that a reliance on images and narratives might be misconstrued in a society dominated by nonhuman animal welfare ideology. (shrink)
Do non-human animals have rights? The answer to this question depends on whether animals have morally relevant mental properties. Mindreading is the human activity of ascribing mental states to other organisms. Current knowledge about the evolution and cognitive structure of mindreading indicates that human ascriptions of mental states to non-human animals are very inaccurate. The accuracy of human mindreading can be improved with the help of scientific studies of animal minds. But the scientific studies by themselves do not (...) by themselves solve the problem of how to map psychological similarities (and differences) between humans and animals onto a distinction between morally relevant and morally irrelevant mental properties. The current limitations of human mindreading – whether scientifically aided or not – have practical consequences for the rational justification of claims about which rights (if any) non-human animals should be accorded. (shrink)
General information -- The animals themselves -- Philosophical arguments -- Laws -- Political realities -- Social realities -- Education and the arts -- Contemporary sciences -- Major figures and organizations in the animalrights movement -- The future of animalrights.
The American states have demonstrated varying levels of support for animalrights legislation. The activities of interest groups, including pressures from competing groups, help to explain the presence or absence of ten pro-animal regulations and laws. This article analyzes and ranks each of the fifty states with regard to ten key areas of animal protection and welfare legislation. The analysis reveals that states with a more agricultural economic base are less likely to provide protection to animals. (...) In addition, states with a more traditional political culture are less likely to have pro-animal legislation in place. (shrink)
In recent discussions, it has been argued that a theory of animalrights is at odds with a liberal abortion policy. In response, Francione (1995) argues that the principles used in the animalrights discourse do not have implications for the abortion debate. I challenge Francione’s conclusion by illustrating that his own framework of animalrights, supplemented by a relational account of moral obligation, can address the moral issue of abortion. I first demonstrate that (...) Francione’s animalrights position, which grounds moral consideration in sentience, is committed to the claim that a sentient fetus has a right to life. I then illustrate that a fully developed account of animalrights that recognizes the special obligations humans have to assist animals when we cause them to be dependent and vulnerable through our voluntary actions or omissions is committed to the following: a woman also has a special obligation to assist a sentient fetus when she causes it to be dependent and vulnerable through her voluntary actions or omissions. From these considerations, it will become evident that a fully developed and consistent animalrights ethic does in fact have implications for the abortion discussion. (shrink)
Many paradigmatic forms of animalrights and environmental activism have been classed as terrorism both in popular discourse and in law. This paper argues that the labelling of many violent forms of direct action carried out in the name of animalrights or environmentalism as ‘terrorism’ is incorrect. Furthermore, the claim is also made that even those acts which are correctly termed as terrorism are not necessarily wrongful acts. The result of this analysis is to call (...) into question the terms of public debate and the legitimacy of anti-terrorism laws targeting and punishing radical activism. (shrink)
This article discusses critical comparisons between the human and nonhuman abolitionist movements in the United States. The modern nonhuman abolitionist movement is, in some ways, an extension of the anti-slavery movement of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries and the ongoing human Civil Rights movement. As such, there is considerable overlap between the two movements, specifically in the need to simultaneously address property status and oppressive ideology. Despite intentional appropriation of terminology and numerous similarities in mobilization efforts, there has been (...) disappointingly little academic discussion on this relationship. There are significant contentions regarding mobilization and goal attainment in the human abolitionist movement that speak to modern collective action on behalf of other animals. This article will explore the human abolitionist movement and discuss possible applications of movement organization, tactical repertoires, and goal attainment to the current nonhuman animalrights movement. Specifically, the utility of violence and legislative activism in the antislavery movement are discussed as potentially problematic approaches to abolishing nonhuman animal exploitation. Alternatively, the nonhuman animalrights focus on consumer resistance and nonviolence represent an important divergence in abolitionist mobilization. (shrink)
How much do animalrights activists talk about animalrights when they attempt to persuade America’s meat-lovers to stop eating nonhuman animals? This study serves as the basis for a unique evaluation and categorization of problems and solutions as framed by five major U.S. animalrights organizations in their vegan/food campaigns. The findings reveal that the organizations framed the problems as: cruelty and suffering; commodification; harm to humans and the environment; and needless killing. To (...) solve problems largely blamed on factory farming, activists asked consumers to become “vegetarian” or to reduce animal product consumption, some requesting “humane” reforms. While certain messages supported animalrights, promoting veganism and respect for animals’ subject status, many frames used animal welfareideology to achieve rights solutions, conservatively avoiding a direct challenge to the dominant human/animal dualism. In support of ideological authenticity, this paper recommends that vegan campaigns emphasize justice, respect, life, freedom, environmental responsibility, and a shared animality. (shrink)
This qualitative study examines the childhood experiences of adult animalrights activists regarding their feelings about, and interactions with, nonhuman animals. Central to children's experiences with animals is the act of eating them, a ritual both normalized and encouraged by the dominant culture and agents of socialization. Yet, despite the massive power of socialization, sometimes children resist the dominant norms of consumption regarding animals. In addition to engaging in acts of resistance, some children, as suggested in the biographical (...) narratives of adult vegan animal activists, also possess a predisposition to respond to the perceived suffering of animals. This predisposition is a variant of the trait empathy but is specifically animal-oriented. In open-ended interviews with 30 vegan animal activists about their paths into the movement, this study examined these childhood experiences and the predisposition that may help set the stage for later adoption of a vegan, animal-rights lifestyle. (shrink)
I examine the risks and opportunities associated with social movement coalition building in attempts to block or curtail the rise of Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations (CAFOs) in the United States. As producers have scaled up animal production facilities, environmentalists and animalrights activists, along with numerous other social actors, have begun anti-CAFO campaigns. I argue that while the CAFO has mobilized a diverse group of social actors, these individuals and organizations do not all have the same (...) interests (aside from resistance to CAFOs), leading to some unlikely allies. These odd alliances provide opportunities for agrifood scholars to study the relationship between the coalitions that social movement organizations form and the support they receive from their respective constituencies. Lastly, I argue that the need for agrifood scholars to address the pitfalls associated with single-issue coalition building extends beyond the unlikely alliance between environmentalists and animalrights activists, as agrifood related crises have led to a proliferation of such coalitions. (shrink)
Provisions for animalrights have been included in the national constitutions of Switzerland and Germany . Protective constitutional inclusion is a major social movement success, and in view of the other movements also seeking increased political visibility and responsiveness, it is worth asking how and why nonhuman animals were allowed into this realm of political importance. This research seeks to explain how animal activists achieved this significant goal in two industrialized democracies. Using an approach drawn from the (...) mainstream canon on social movements, this comparative study attempts to show how cultural factors, institutional selectivity, and the influence of spontaneous events, along with the tactic of “frame-bridging,” determined the success of both movements. (shrink)
Purebred dog rescuers are doing their part to reduce the problems of homeless pets and pet overpopulation. The volunteers studied are doing the daily and invisible work of saving dogs. Because of their perception of the animalrights movement, however, they do not consider themselves part of the animal welfare or animalrights movement, nor do they care to be. Dog rescue organizations agree with academics and activist organizations on the cause of the problem of (...) homeless pets and pet overpopulation, but they differ on the theoretical, political, and ideological solutions to the problem. This paper focuses on the disagreements between rescue workers, activists, and academics and asks whether there is a place for rescue workers within the larger animal protection movement. (shrink)
Animals have encountered cruelty and suffering throughout the ages. It is something perpetrated up till this day, particularly, in factory farms, animal laboratories, and even in the name of sports or amusement. However, since the second half of the twentieth century, there has been growing concerns for animal welfare and the protection of animalrights within the discourse of environmentalism, developed mainly in the West. Nevertheless, a recently developed Islamic Ecological Paradigm rooted in the classical Islamic (...) traditions contests the ‘Western’ monopoly of modern environmentalism, suggesting that there is much in Islamic traditions dealing with environmental issues including non-human animal species. IEP asserts that several centuries ago Islamic traditions significantly focused on and strongly advocated for animal welfare and animalrights. This paper explores and examines animalrights within the broader spectrum of Islamic environmentalism or Islamic eco-ethic. While the philosophical roots of IEP concerning animalrights date far back in seventh century, it can potentially make both ethical and educational contributions to the twenty-first century environmentalism and animalrights movements. (shrink)
This discussion focuses on the rationales employed by animalrights activists to explain their involvement in, and support of, protest tactics that are controversial both inside and outside the animalrights movement. The paper centers on the use of residential picketing in a campaign against a private, multinational animal testing firm. Using ethnographic data and semistructured interviews with activists, the discussion demonstrates that these activists are aware of the marginality of their tactics. Despite some ambivalence, (...) however, activists accept full responsibility for their actions and justify their behavior by utilizing supportive rationales that stress the perceived efficacy of home demos. Specifically, they appeal to the immediate and long-term psychological and direct and indirect material impacts on protest targets. These narratives are explored as constructions that are shaped and disseminated within the context of the state’s preoccupation with “ecoterrorism” and the movement’s internal debates regarding acceptable protest tactics. (shrink)
Lack of diversity in the ranks as well as a failure to resonate with disadvantaged groups and other anti-oppression movements has been cited as one important barrier to the American Nonhuman Animalrights movement’s success. It is possible that social movements are actively inhibiting diversity in the ranks and audience by producing literature that reflects a narrow activist identity. This article creates a platform from which these larger issues can be explored by investigating the actual demographic representations present (...) in a small sample of popular media sources produced by the movement for other animals. A content analysis of 131 magazine covers produced by two highly visible movement actors, PETA and VegNews, was conducted to demonstrate that activist representations in at least some dominant American Nonhuman Animalrights media are mostly white, female, and thin. (shrink)
This qualitative study of 27 women animal activists examines the risks and rewards that accompany a commitment to animalrights activism. One of the common beliefs about animalrights activists is that their political choices are fanatic and unyielding, resulting in rigid self-denial. Contrary to this notion, the women in this study experienced both the pain and the joy of their transformation toward animal activism. Activism took an enormous toll on their personal relationships, careers, (...) and emotional well being. They struggled as friendships ended and family relationships suffered; some experienced harassment and abuse as a result of their efforts. Yet the women were just as likely to extol the rewards and pleasure gained from their participation in the cause of animal liberation. These included a heightened awareness of political issues, greater self-confidence, the feeling that they were making a difference in the world, and the joy of living a “more meaningful life.”. (shrink)
This article examines United States v. Stevens, a case recently decided by the Supreme Court, and its relation to animal law and freedom of speech issues, specifically the contention between the two, caused by the statute in question at the heart of the case. While animalrights advocates wish to frame the case through an anti-animal cruelty perspective, those seeking to protect freedom of speech have made the statute an issue of First Amendment rights. Is (...) 18 USC § 48 an imposition on free speech or a step in the right direction towards protection of animals and promotion of their rights? It is argued here that the Supreme Court should have recognized the Stevens case as an important development in animalrights and held that the statute is narrowly tailored, based on a compelling government interest, and that the protection of animals from harm overshadows any possible speech or expression that is found in crush videos, dog fighting videos, and the like. (shrink)
The publication of 'AnimalRights and Souls in the 18th Century' will be welcomed by everyone interested in the development of the modern animal liberation movement, as well as by those who simply want to savour the work of enlightenment thinkers pushing back the boundaries of both science and ethics. At last these long out-of-print texts are again available to be read and enjoyed - and what texts they are! Gems like Bougeant's witty reductio of the Christian (...) view of animals are included together with path-breaking works of ethics such as Primatt's A Dissertation on the Duty of Mercy and Sin of Cruelty to Brute Animals . There are works I have never seen before, including the remarkable Cry of Nature by the Scottish revolutionary Jacobin, John Oswald. In this set, everyone will find something novel, delightful and truly enlightening. - Peter Singer The discussion of animalrights and the moral status of animals, so prevalent in the late twentieth century, has its roots in the mid to late eighteenth century. Some of the themes we consider of recent invention - the legal standing of animals, the ethical status of vegetarians, cruelty towards animals, ultimately resulting in cruelty to humans - are of long standing. But in the eighteenth-century literature they are interconnected with theological issues surrounding animal souls, the birth of the life sciences, the great chain of being and other peculiarly eighteenth-century problems. This collection explores the exciting early discussions of moral theories concerning animals, placing them within their historical and social context. It reveals that issues such as vivisection, animal souls and vegetarianism were very much live philosophical subjects 200 years ago. The six volumes reprinted here includes complete works and edited extracts from such key eighteenth-century thinkers as Oswald, Primatt, Smellie, Monboddo and Jenyns. Many of the materials are extremely rare and never previously reprinted. The collection, edited with a new introduction and bio-bibliography by Aaron V. Garrett provides valuable original source material to supplement contemporary discussions of animalrights. --18th-century material on the theme of animalrights and practical ethics --an important supplement to contemporary animalrights discussions --provides a broader account of early discussions of the 'science of human nature' through animals --widens our understanding of 18th-century ethics through an important area of practical ethics --includes many scarce texts, most of which have never been reprinted before. (shrink)
Zoos and animalrights seem utterly opposed to each other. In this controversial and timely book, Stephen Bostock argues that they can develop a more harmonious relationship. He examines the diverse ethical and technical issues involved, including human cruelty, human domination over animals, the well-being of wild animals outside their natural habitat, and the nature of wild and domestic animals. In his analysis, Bostock draws attention to the areas which give rise to misconceptions. This book explores the long (...) history of zoos, as well as current philosophical debates, to argue for a conservational view of their role in the modern world. Anyone concerned with humanity's relationship with other animals and the natural world will find this to be thought-provoking and rewarding reading. (shrink)
This collection of new essays aims to address some of the most perplexing issues arising from death and dying, as well as the moral status of persons and animals. Leading scholars, including Peter Singer and Gerald Dworkin, investigate diverse topics such as animalrights, vegetarianism, lethal injection, abortion and euthanasia.
With more than two million members and supporters, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) is the world’s largest animal-rights organization, and its founder and president, Ingrid Newkirk, is one of the most well-known and most effective activists in America. She has spearheaded worldwide efforts to improve the treatment of animals in manufacturing, entertainment, and elsewhere. Every day, in laboratories, food factories, and other industries, animals by the millions are subjected to inhumane cruelty. In this accessible guide, (...) Newkirk teaches readers hundreds of simple ways to stop thoughtless animal cruelty and make positive choices. For each topic, Newkirk provides hard facts, personal insight, inspiration, ideas, and resources, including: • How to eat healthfully and compassionately • How to adopt animals rather than support puppy mills • How to make their vote count and change public opinion • How to switch to cruelty-free cosmetics and clothing • How to choose amusements that protect rather than exploit animals. With public concern for the well-being of animals greater than ever—particularly among young people—this timely, practical book offers exciting and easy ways to make a difference. (shrink)
Tom Regan argues that human beings and some non-human animals have moral rights because they are “subjects of lives,” that is, roughly, conscious, sentient beings with an experiential welfare. A prominent critic, Carl Cohen, objects: he argues that only moral agents have rights and so animals, since they are not moral agents, lack rights. An objection to Cohen’s argument is that his theory of rights seems to imply that human beings who are not moral agents have (...) no moral rights, but since these human beings have rights, his theory of rights is false, and so he fails to show that animals lack rights. Cohen responds that this objection fails because human beings who are not moral agents nevertheless are the “kind” of beings who are moral agents and so have rights, but animals are not that “kind” of being and so lack rights. Regan argues that Cohen’s “kind” arguments fail: they fail to explain why human beings who are not moral agents have rights and they fail to show that animals lack rights. Since Cohen’s “kind” arguments are influential, I review and critique Regan’s objections . I offer suggestions for stronger responses to arguments like Cohen’s. (shrink)
The objective of the paper is to justify the claim for animals‟ rights. For years, it is one of the most debated questions in the field of applied ethics whether animals‟ have rights or not. There are a number of philosophers who hold that animals are neither moral agent nor rational being and hence animals have no rights because the concept of rights is applicable only to the rational beings. On the other hand the proponents of (...) animals‟ rights contend that the standard for having rights is not active rationality but sentience and animals have sentience as they feel pain. So they are also subject to have rights. The main questions to be justified in this essay are, what is it to say that animals have rights? Can animals have any rights at all, if yes, how far? Is it the moral obligation of the human being to ensure animals rights? Considering the questions, in this essay, it will be shown that animals have limited rights and not all animals are subject to having the same rights. It depends on the proportion of their having capacity and capability for the same. It will be tried to make a consensus between the two groups by the way that there are some aspects where we are to acknowledge the rights of animal. It will be shown that not all animals are subject to equal rights. (shrink)
Even if animal liberation were to be adopted, would rights for animals be redundant – or even deleterious? Such an objection, most prominently voiced by L. W. Sumner and Paul W. Taylor, is misguided, risks an anthropocentric and anthropomorphic conception of autonomy and freedom, overly agent-centered rights conceptions, and an overlooking of the likely harmful consequences of positing rights for humans but not for nonhuman animals. The objection in question also stems from an overly pessimistic construal (...) of autonomy-infringements thought to result from extending rights to animals, and also, of confusions that supposedly may ensue from ascribing animalrights. Whether or not a case for animal liberation and/or animalrights can cogently be made, the redundancy-or-worse objection to animalrights need pose no barrier. (shrink)
In this book, law professors Sherry F. Colb and Michael C. Dorf argue that: -/- many non-human animals, at least vertebrates, are morally considerable and prima facie wrong to harm because they are sentient, i.e., conscious and capable of experiencing pains and pleasures; most aborted human fetuses are not sentient -- their brains and nervous systems are not yet developed enough for sentience -- and so the motivating moral concern for animals doesn't apply to most abortions; later abortions affecting sentient (...) fetuses, while rare, raise serious moral concerns, but these abortions -- like all abortions -- invariably involve the interests and rights of the pregnant woman, which can make these abortions morally permissible. For a book claiming to explore the "connections" between debates about the two issues, just the summary from the book flap -- basically, what's above -- makes it appear that there really isn't much connection between the topics, at least at the core ethical level. Animals are sentient, early fetuses are not, and so the moral arguments about the two issues don't overlap or share premises. While the authors hope to use insights from one issue to shed light on the other, I find that differences in the issues limit these insights. (shrink)