Animal Rights - Chapter 17: Animal Rights INTRODUCTION Two...

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Chapter 17: Animal Rights INTRODUCTION Two humpback whales, Delta and Dawn swam into the San Francisco Bay under the Golden Gate bridge and by mistake they stayed in the Delta. They stayed there a little too long, and started to get injuries from human activity. There was a huge initiatives to get them back into the Pacific ocean. Why do people care about other animals? Canned Hunting o Normally a pursuit in which people go out and try to kill animals for the fun of it. Someimes they are successful and sometimes they aren’t. o Recently “rigged” hunts have become popular, where companies have established areas where certain animals (which are bought by those companies) are confined so that hunters have a better chance at getting a kill. Opposing reaction: Hunters and animal lovers have denounced the practice saying that it is bad sport and cruel. Supporting reaction: NRA supports it. Animal Research o Many different types of animals are being used, their bodies being altered and sometimes causing pain for medical advances o Are we justified in using nonhuman animals for research that may help humans, or is this wrongful and cruel treatment of other sentient beings. Endangered species o Many laws protecting endangered species o The products/animals themselves often provide economic sustenance to people. We depend on animals in many ways. They are o Pets that provide us with companionship and comfort o Entertainment by watching them in zoos and circuses, animal racing, riding skills, hunting o Workers that herd sheep or cattle o Fulfill economic needs like need for food and clothing(both luxury and necessity) o Providers of medicinal aids o Warn us about possible dangers to human health o Commercial benefit (ex. jobs/income from tourism/fishing) o Tools for learning about ourselves SENTIENCE Sentience: If a living organism (nonhuman) can feel pleasure or pain just as humans do, and can seem almost human in their perceptions and reactions to us, that organism is sentient. Sentience is important because it is the key to the ethical status of animals, because it provides an ultimate reason for what humans think they can rightly do to animals. o According to Jeremy Bentham (a Utilitarian Philosopher) it doesn’t matter whether or not animals can speak, but whether or not they suffer.
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o According to Rene Descartes, animals are machines devoid of inner sense or consciousness Because animals are sentient, there are laws that protect animals from cruelty o What counts as cruelty? (ex. Does caging a bird count as cruelty?) Why should humans not be cruel to animals?
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Animal Rights - Chapter 17: Animal Rights INTRODUCTION Two...

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