Home     Writers     Op/Ed     Book Reviews     News     Bookstore     Photoshops     Submit     Search     Contact Us     Advertise  
  You are here: 





US Needs to Strengthen Animal Protection Laws
Monday, 23 November 2009 23:08
by Sherwood Ross

American law “does nothing to genuinely protect animals, nor does it recognize their true value and special place in our homes and within our families,” two animal rights authorities say.

“Our legal system just does not recognize the bond between people and their companion animals, and when that bond is severed, it completely fails to compensate for that loss,” write law professors Diane Sullivan and Holly Vietzke of the Massachusetts School of Law at Andover.

Furthermore, they write, torture of laboratory animals is as widespread as it is unnecessary, and they question “the propriety of treating millions of animals like property for research at the hand and whim of the researcher.” Proponents of testing argue that animal research is “necessary” and/or “justified.” “To advance this position requires a rationale that a dog, cat, or chimp is the equivalent of an innate piece of property.”

With the advancement of science and technology, Sullivan and Vietzke continue, “it is now possible to conduct testing without having to use live animals. Human tissue, donated from human cells, can be grown in test tubes.”

Moreover, they assert, computers can use simulation software to virtually conduct tests, even incorporating “hundreds of variables” to simulate various human conditions and the effects the drug or product would have on them.

Known and very popular cialis coupon which gives all the chance to receive a discount for a preparation which has to be available and exactly cialis coupons has been found in the distant room of this big house about which wood-grouses in the houses tell.

In an article in the “Journal of Animal Law,” published by Michigan State University College of Law, Sullivan and Vietzke write: “As wrong as it is, animals are considered property in the eyes of the law despite the fact we all know animals feel pain, display emotion, exhibit loyalty and sadness, and (in some cases) share most of our genetic make-up.”

In the past, the authors say, slaves, women, and children all were regarded as chattels and that animals today are defined as property “because it is convenient---and profitable.” When this occurs, it allows them to be “exploited, harmed and used for experimentation and entertainment, all with impunity.”

A glaring example of the mistreatment of animals occurred during the evacuation of New Orleans residents during Hurricane Katrina in August, 2005. “Refugees escaping with their pets to designated bus pickup areas” were “commanded to abandon their pets or remain behind with them in danger.”

Sullivan and Vietzke write, “To forbid people access to safety and shelter when they and their pets are giving deep emotional support to each other in unconscionable,” and two to three thousand animals, they add, perished as a result.

“The loss of these lives and the separation of thousands of others from their human companions have given urgency to the need to legally reclassify the status of domestic animals from property to beings,” Sullivan and Vietzke say.

Because of their classification as property, animals lack standing, which represents a significant bar to suits brought on behalf of, or for the benefit of, animals. “The requirement of ‘injury-in-fact’ is a tough hurdle to overcome,” the law professors note. “Plaintiffs suing on behalf of animals will be easily defeated if the injury is one of emotional harm. If an animal is property, how can a plaintiff satisfy injury-in-fact when emotional harm resulting from pain inflicted on property is non-recognizable?”

Sullivan and Vietzke reason, “If Mahatma Gandhi was correct when he said, ‘The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated,’ then the United States has a very long way to go before it is a great nation, as compared to our allies.”

The Massachusetts School of Law at Andover is a 21-year-old law school whose pioneering mission is to inexpensively provide rigorous legal education, a pathway into the legal profession, and social mobility to members of the working class, minorities, people in midlife, and immigrants.

Through its television shows, videotaped conferences, an intellectual magazine, and internet postings, MSL - - uniquely for a law school - - also seeks to provide the public with information about crucial legal and non legal subjects facing the country. #

(Further information or to arrange for interviews with MSL Dean and Cofounder Lawrence Velvel, or Professors Sullivan and Vietzke please contact Sherwood Ross, media consultant to Massachusetts School of Law at Andover, at sherwoodross10@gmail.com
More from this author:
Prevent Future Massacres by Curbing Bullying (12209 Hits)
by Sherwood Ross Society could reduce the number of senseless killings on campuses and in workplaces and shopping malls if it paid closer...
Bush Arms Dictators Around The World (11230 Hits)
by Sherwood Ross “In the last six years, Washington has stepped up its sales and transfers of high-technology weapons, military training, and...
CIA’S Overthrow of Iran in 1953 Reaps Bitter Harvest For America (10867 Hits)
by Sherwood Ross Iranians’ hatred of America dates back to the CIA’s violent 1953 overthrow of democratic Prime Minister Mohammed...
The Housing Bubble, Bailout, Good Jobs and Goodfellas (9516 Hits)
by Sherwood Ross The rush to bail out Wall Street is tragic. It’s as if the sun wouldn’t rise tomorrow unless Congress acted immediately....
The United States of England (15736 Hits)
by Sherwood Ross Why don’t we call America the United States of England? It may be a separate entity politically and geographically, but today...
Related Articles:
Call me Ebenezer, but Christmas as we know it needs to go..... (7402 Hits)
By Jason Miller   Bursting forth with renewed intensity, the “War on Christmas” is back in 2006.  So just what...
Our Next President Needs to Be Well-Seasoned (7080 Hits)
by Andrew Bard Schmookler I certainly agree with those who regard Barack Obama as an appealing and impressive fellow. And I thought John...
Offering a Response to Senator Webb - What America Really Needs to Hear (7018 Hits)
By Joshua Frank Shortly after President Bush’s State of the Union address last week Jim Webb, the freshman Senator from Virginia,...
Co-Dependent Congress Must Wake Up: The President Needs a Straight-Jacket and a Padded Cell (7375 Hits)
by Dave Lindorff It’s time to simply admit the obvious: The president of the United States is crazy as a loon, and the Congress and the ...
The West Needs to Reorder Strategy in Afghanistan (5338 Hits)
by Ehsan Azari Afghanistan is caught in a double bind of Taliban’s extremism and Caliban-like warlords. The familiar quick solution devised...

Add this page to your favorite Social Bookmarking websites
Comments (0)add comment

Write comment
smaller | bigger



Top 123