The topic of animal cruelty is one of great importance to the wold today. Why we humans have the right reserved to treat animals as lesser individuals is beyond me. Animals are fulfilling their part in the ecosystems and communities of the earth, and to the best extent that they are able. For example, a spider is being the best possible spider that it can be, spinning webs and working diligently at what it knows best, not bothering any creatures of the earth besides the ones which it needs to capture for food. We, as humans, decided that we are a much advanced life form and can basically treat anything else in this world in ways which we cannot imagine being treated. As a result the threads holding our earth together tightly in the balance are being slowly unraveled to lead into ultimate self-destruction.
In 1988, 16, 989 animals died in laboratories in the United Kingdom. This was due to such tests as acute and chronic toxicity experiments, where the animals are forced to consume substances such as perfume, make-up and other beauty products and are often literally poisoned, their systems literally overloaded by the substance in question. Another testing method is the Lethal Dose 50 percent test or LD50. In this procedure at least half of the animals must die in order for the government to figure out how much a human can ingest without dying. In one such test some animals were fed 4. lb. of lipstick and one ended up dying of intestinal obstruction. In another, 7 pints of melted eye shadow was fed to rats. In yet another, mice were wrapped in tin foil and grilled in ultraviolet light to test a sun block cream for a total of 96 hours. The results of the test were that the longer the mice stayed in the rays, the more sunburnt they got. But that is not all.
A wax product used in many cosmetics was dosed into animals by a stomach tube. The amount that they used is equivalent to feeding 1 lb of the stuff to humans. The animals involved soon began salivating, bleeding from the nose and mouth, and had extreme diarrhoea. As the test progressed some more, the animals became emaciated and unkempt, had congestion in the lungs and kidneys and solid wax in the stomach. The infamous Draize eye test cannot be forgotten either. Chemicals are instilled into the eyes of rabbits in stocks, often for up to seven days. And because their eyes are physiologically different from ours, they cannot produce enough tears to wash the substance away and it remains there for long periods of time. Unfortunately for them, rabbits are cheap and simple to maintain, and they also have large eyes. In the acute inhalation test the animals are subjected to intense amounts of a certain substance or toxin in a small caged environment for four days to test the effects of chemical inhalants used in aerosol spray cans and other gaseous materials.
The animals which actually survive the test are then killed to be examined. This is also done with tobacco products and alcohol. Another instance included the removal of infant rhesus monkeys from their mothers at birth and isolated or given cheap substitutes to study the need for a maternal figure early on in life. After 4 months some of the babies were able to integrate back into a normal monkey society, the ones isolated for a year or more had definite social problems. To attempt to find more out about our sexuality we of course turn to cats. After some nerve surgery, the cats involved became disoriented and lost interest in sexual activity. There was also the dastardly one in which some silly scientist removed a cat’s brain to see if it could still walk afterwards. Vivisection is of course the live dissection of animals for scientific research, and is quite widespread in use today. Most of these are performed without the use of anaesthetics.
The ironic thing regarding this entire situation is the fact that animals, for the most part, have a very different body chemistry than us, and, as a whole, are very different than us. So basically none of these tests has any relevancy for us today. As well, there is a widespread range of natural products already available to us which most scientists and doctors refuse to acknowledge because there is more money in animal research. This is sadistic and wrong. Some governments are pushing for mandatory animal testing on all products, even completely safe products like honey. This is quite unnecessary for the survival of humans. Not to mention the countless numbers of animals which have been injected with infectious diseases so that they can be researched. There have been some breakthroughs in the use of human tissue culture in various experiments, but of course it is not as good as the real thing. The destruction of so many animals with such harmful products is not exactly healthy for our earth either.
There is really no safe to dispose of a noxious dead body. How unsafe and unreal. As well there are more frightening prospects. All a company has to do to sell a “cruelty- free” product is to not have tested it within the past 5 years. This means that in reality products could be tested now and be on the market in 5 years. How frightening! Once again, this is unusual and unnecessary with all of what the earth has already provided for us, the healing plants, most of which we are destroying with the clear cut and pollution problems experienced within the past century or so. What a huge power trip these scientists must be on to have thousands of animals lives hanging in the balance at their command every day. What a complete act of superiority. With so many other options, don’t you think that the situation would lessen or differ somewhat? No, of course not. Humans are always looking for the easy way out of situations, and if that means torturing innocent and helpless animals, then so be it. I am personally against this mode of action.
Lorraine Kay,”Living without cruelty,” Sidgwick and Jackson press, London, 1990. J. J. McCoy,”Animals in research; Issues in conflict,” Impact press, U.S.A., 1993. Lynda Dickinson,”Victims of vanity,” Summerhill press, Canada, 1989. B.P. Robert Stephen Silverman,”Defending animals’ rights is the right thing to do,” S.p.i. books, U.S.A.,1992. Kathy Snow Guillermo,”Monkey business,” National press books, U.S.A., 1993.