Animal Equality Essay, Research Paper
This assertion is saying that there are differences between animals and humans and because of those differences we should have different rights. Humans already have more rights than animals and it is ridiculous how no one even recognizes it. For example, humans go hunting all the time and don t even think twice about it. What I am saying is, on the news you never hear about a deer killing a hunter because it just doesn t happen. It is not the deer s nature to kill a human when we have done nothing wrong to it. And the same should work both ways for humans as it does for animals. When animals have done nothing wrong to us, there is no need for us to grab a gun and just go shooting and murdering innocent animals.
I believe that humans and animals should have the same rights to an extent, but not to the point where it is out of control. As of right now, humans have so many more rights than animals. You have to stay within limits when you are talking about humans and animal rights. You can t say that animals should get to vote or anything like that because it is absurd. But you can say that humans can t kill deer without justifiable cause. Guthrie claims it is impractical to look beyond the human community meaning that anything other than humans are lower than we are. He states that we are the highest form of being and if we want to murder cattle to feed ourselves when we have more than enough resources that it is ok for us to get greedy and want more than we need. Guthrie states that giving another organism the status of moral body and amoral body
simultaneously leads us into what is known as Schweitzer s dilemma. Schweitzer considered each organism as an individual who at all costs would be saved under all causes if at all possible. Schweitzer states that predators are regarded as evil. If this statement were true, then wouldn t humans be evil because we hunt and are predators against deer and rabbits and all kinds of animals in the wild. We go hunting them for no cause at all except for the fun of it, which would mean we are predators.
Not only do we face absurd decisions about which organisms we save in a crisis situation, but the question can also be posed as to how individual variation within each species is to be regarded. If we consider out morality as an entirely human phenomenon, and apply it to humans, the system will work and we don t have to worry about other organisms except for ourselves.
Generally, we don t bring domesticated animals such as dogs, cats, and in some cases horses under the same moral consideration that we do with other humans. We look down upon them as if they are there solely for our use. But some people do not do this; some individuals look at their pets as companions and treat them as if they were humans. We do not hesitate in discrimination against those that aren t our own species or kind as it may be. An example of this would be back during the days of slavery. The slave drivers totally disregarded all human kind except for the few people they thought were worthy not to be treated as if they were not a living, breathing being. Some humans just have no regard for other human life and these individuals are the ones who society looks down upon. If we all looked at everyone and every living thing from the same viewpoint, then we would all have a common foundation for our judgments, which is human welfare. My opinion on human welfare is that if we all stopped treating each other with such disrespect and the same way towards animals, then we would not have such ethical problems such as humans killing humans for unjustifiable causes and we would not be murdering innocent animals for no cause at all. Even the problems that we face in our own moral system are troubling society at this moment, we test new drugs on animals and even newborn infants, which hurts animals and in most cases the child. I know that we can further our own medical sciences but even in this case we have to look out for the animals we are destroying by doing experiments on them for our own benefit. I am seeing that example as Darwinism because we are killing other species for our own benefit, which is survival of the fittest. Animals can t defend themselves in the same fashion that humans can and that is where we exploit them. We make them surrender themselves to us by hitting them with tranquilizers and then dragging them to their horrible, painful death by medical drugs, which has never been used before. It is true that we might be furthering our own cures and studies towards new vaccines for human kind, but at a great cost we are achieving this goal.
Guthrie states that it is illogical and impractical to extend any kind of feelings past humanity. Our relationship to any organism but us is useless unless we need that resource and in that case it is all right. It seems like he is contradicting himself in that statement when he says we shouldn t express any moral concern past ourselves, but then when we need anything outside of our own resources it is fine if we utilize other materials than those we have. His opinion is that we shouldn t weigh the effect that our actions have on organisms other than ourselves when we are deciding what to do which is very definitely ethical egoism.
Singer has almost the exact opposite views that Guthrie has in his defense of animal liberation. He states that the bias against animals is similar to that of the bias against blacks and women. All of these forms of discrimination violate the principle of equal consideration in Singer s view. He also claims that there is no justification for regarding the pain that animals feel as less important than the same amount of pain or pleasure felt by humans. I agree with Singer because I have always wanted animals to have equal rights as humans regarding they can t be killed for any reason. The only way I would allow a human to kill an innocent animal would be if there were nothing I could do to save the creature. If you believe in animal rights then you would not standby and watch a defenseless animal get murdered.
Singer makes a good point when he says that the argument for equality was applied to women, and it is the same situation for animals. They were treated as if they were lower than humans and eventually they got equal rights to an extent. Almost everyone treats their pets as if they were lower than they are. They always talk down to them and scold them and in the days when women were treated this way they wouldn t say anything about it, and that is how it is with animals now because they can t say anything about it. At some point in time, women got equal rights to man and it is the same case as dogs being treated as lower than humans and I feel that soon they will get equal treatment as humans do. A counterexample to this, which Guthrie would probably use, is that women have the ability to vote because they can think and make rational decisions, but animals on the other hand cannot. And in favor of the animals, Singer would say that some of the decisions that the animals have no say in affect them but they can do nothing about it. So that example is irrelevant when you look deeper into it if the situation that could have affects the animals. On the other hand to both of these arguments, Thomas Taylor would say that these examples that are listed above have no relevance because dogs and cats will never have the chance to vote so we should not even bother pondering about whether animals should have equal rights to humans. Taylor also gives the example that the basic principle of equality does not require equal or identical treatment but rather equal consideration. If we give equal consideration, then this may lead to different rights and treatment.
Another reason that animals should have rights is because humans did not create animals so we should not be able to do with them whatever we choose. God created all living and breathing organisms and we should not be killing any of God s creations. I do not understand why people get upset when a person they don t even know gets murdered, but when an animal gets killed they don t know they don t even care. I could understand it if they were a family member or a family pet, but in most cases it is not that way. It is immoral to murder anything be it a human or animal. Anything that is living and breathing I don t feel that we should murder it or even think about murdering it because we did not create it, we did not give it life so we should not be tampering with it.
The worst thing that a human could possibly do to an animal is making it suffer by beating it or starving it. Animal cruelty is one of the most disgusting things that I have ever heard of. You can beat an animal to death and get a slap on the wrist from the police, but if you do the same to a human being you can get up to life in jail. It is ridiculous to think of the difference in the ways that we mistreat animals and don t care about it. Some people love and care about their pets as if they were a member of the family, almost like they were a son or a daughter but with four legs. Animals feel pain just as humans do. If you kick a dog in the stomach, it is going to feel pain just as a human would. Any living thing has emotions and feelings just like humans do but we don t recognize this and therefore do nothing about it.
A 17th century philosopher named Rene Descartes states that to most people, it is obvious that if we stick a sharp knife into an animal, it will feel pain. And everyone will agree to that because they feel that if a knife were inserted into them it would be painful. That is just another characteristic as to why we should give equal rights to animals because as of now, people are being reckless and torturing their pets and nobody can do anything about it because it is just an animal and the owner could say it died of old age with nobody asking another word, when in reality you never know what could ve happened to the animal. For all you know he could ve poisoned it or just beat it to do death. Descartes goes on and mentions that pain is a state of consciousness, a mental even as such it can never be observed. Pain is something we feel and no one around can feel so it is up to us to determine how painful something is. The same goes for animals because they have feelings too and I am sure they feel pain. We know this because of the look in a dog s eye when a car hits it, or when it starts yelping and barking. Humans and animals have so many of the same characteristics, yet we regard them as if they are lower than we are and this is wrong. Guthrie would feel like we shouldn t even care about animals; all they are good for is to eat for our own good. Singer would say that animals need more rights to an extent but not going overboard. I agree with Singer on some points but a few of his points are out of hand. Animals should have rights but we can t get out of control with them.