Presentation on theme: "Animal Rights “The Deeper Minds Of All Ages Have Had Pity For Animals” Friedrich Nietzsche I am simply a machine created for the benefit of humans…aren’t."— Presentation transcript:
Animal Rights “The Deeper Minds Of All Ages Have Had Pity For Animals” Friedrich Nietzsche I am simply a machine created for the benefit of humans…aren’t I?
Animal rights, also known as animal liberation is the idea that the most basic interests of all animals should be given the same consideration as the similar interests of human beings.
Abuse of Animal Rights Cruelty and abuse of animals can be passive and active. Passive abuse : this is making a choice not to take action e.g. allowing an animal to starve or not alleviating pain to an injured animal. Active abuse : this is committing an act that inflicts pain such as cutting off a limb, stabbing choking or punching. Each country adopt their own stance on animal cruelty and therefore whether a particular act of cruelty is unlawful depends on where it happenshttp://animalcrueltyfacts.org/http://animalcrueltyfacts.org/ However, when it comes to animals other than cats and dogs, peoples' concept of the term "animal cruelty" varies greatly. Most animal activists would say that traditional agricultural practices such as debeaking, tail docking, castration and confinement on factory farms are animal cruelty. Most people would probably agree, but factory farmers and most states' animal cruelty laws would disagree.
But as we know there are lots of different opinions….. Various opinions! Many people base their definition of ‘animal cruelty ‘ on how much the animal suffers or experiences pain during death. This is not relevant for animal rights activists as any type of actions which deprives an animal of their right to live and exist free from human use and abuse. Others base their definition of how intelligent they believe the animal to be. For some the slaughtering of whales or dogs is animal cruelty yet chickens, cows and sheep may be acceptable. Killing animals for food may be acceptable but not for fur or cosmetic testing. Among the general public, the more culturally beloved the animal is and the more unusual the harm is, the more likely they are to be outraged and label the harm to that animal as "animal cruelty." To animal activists, a much wider range of harms is called "animal cruelty." Animal rights activists would argue that cruelty is cruelty, regardless of how common or legal the harm is.
Some examples of abuse in our world today….. Companion animals – family pet abuse Factory farming Cruelty through entertainment/ tourism Animal testing Animal Exportation Cruelty through Entertainment Consumer Choices e.g. wearing fur.
▪ In some circuses, wild and exotic animals are trained through the use of intimidation and physical abuse. Former circus employees have reported seeing animals beaten, whipped, poked with sharp objects and even burned to force them to learn their routines! ▪ Elephants who perform in circuses are often kept in chains for as long as 23 hours a day from the time they are babies. ▪ More than 25 million vertebrate animals are used in testing in the United States each year. When invertebrate animals are thrown into the mix, the estimated number rises to as high as 100 million.
▪ By 2022, 22% of all species will be extinct if no action is taken. ▪ Dog fighting and cock-fighting are illegal in all 50 states. ▪ It is estimated that on average it takes 1,000 dogs to maintain a mid- sized racetrack operation. New greyhounds are continually entering the system to replace greyhounds that grade-off due to injury, age or poor performance. There are currently over 30 tracks operating in the United States.
▪ Tens of thousands of wild and domesticated horses from the United States are cruelly slaughtered every year to be used for horse meat in Europe and Asia. Since the last horse slaughter plants in the U.S. were closed in 2007, thousands of horses have been shipped to Canada and Mexico for slaughter. ▪ 4 to 5 million animals die in shelters every year. ▪ Neglect and abandonment are the most common forms of companion animal abuse in the United States. ▪ A fur coat is pretty cool—for an animal to wear. Eighteen red foxes are killed to make one fox-fur coat, 55 minks to make a mink coat.
Why do people abuse animals? There are many reasons why people partake in the abuse of animals. Here are some common reasons: Emotional and communication barriers between humans and animals Ignorance Personal gain and pleasure Believing abuse is justified Lack of empathy Animals suffer in silence – unaware of the pain they cause They are defenseless, making an easy target Little or no consequences for perpetrators Traditions, customs or rituals Desire to assert power or authority
We shouldn’t abuse animals because…… Animals have been placed on this earth alongside and with humans. Due to our intellect, we ended up being the dominant species. We have learned to use animals to make our lives easier and more pleasurable. We use them for food, clothing, transport, protection, entertainment and companionship. In return, humane treatment is the least we can provide.
Christian Perspectives on Animal Rights? Traditional Views The Christian views throughout the ages was that human being were greatly superior to animals and we had little or no obligations towards animals. Some leading theologians which held this thought were Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274) and Augustine of Hippo (354-430).
The Natural Law theory allowed early theologians to believe that animals should be preyed on an eaten by others. They based this on three main ideas:God had created animals for the use of human beings and human beings were therefore entitled to use them in any way they want.Animals were distinctively inferior to human beings and were worth little or no moral consideration, because: Humans have souls and animals don't! Humans have reason and animals don't!Christian thought was heavily humano-centric. They only considered animals in relation to human beings, and not on their own terms. As cited in http://www.bbc.co.uk/religion/religions/christianity/christianethics/animals_1.shtml
Augustine reinforced animal inferiority with the belief that animals existed entirely for the benefit of humanity. He saw that human beings are rational and rational beings are entitled to rule irrational beings. Aquinas saw that the universe was a hierarchy with God at the top. Each layer in the hierarchy existed to serve the layers above it. Humanity came above the animals, so animals existed to serve humankind.
Its not all bad…..!! This view was not held by all Christians. Many of the saints treated animals respectfully and kindly. St Antony of Padua preached to fishes St Francis of Assisi preached to the birds and became the most popular pro-animal Christian figure Cows are protected by St Bridget St Columba told his monks to care for a crane St Brendan was helped in his voyage by sea monsters
Modern Christian thinking about animal rights Christians today see themselves as Stewards of Creation and are more sympathetic towards animals and animal rights. If an animal’s life is a natural gift from God, it follows that God’s right is violated when the natural life of his creatures is harmed and therefor all God’s creatures, human or animal should be treated with respect.
Some theologians do not accept that animals have rights but accept the idea that animals display intelligences, consciousness and self- awareness which calls for moral consideration in how they are treated.
The Catholic Church has a role to play in Global Environmental issues, this has called for a change in the ideas and expectations of the role of the individual in relation to nature. Christians have moved from the idea of human domination and exploitation of animals to a role of stewardship and partnership with God in caring for nature and all of his creation.
Some more Christian Ideas….. ▪The Bible shows that God made his covenant with animals as well as human beings. ▪ Human and non-human animals have the same origin in God. ▪ The Garden of Eden, in which human beings lived in peace and harmony with animals, demonstrates God's ideal world, and the state of affairs that human beings should work towards. ▪ The prophet Isaiah describes the Kingdom of Heaven as a place where animals and human beings live together in peace. ▪ God has the right to have everything he created treated respectfully - wronging animals is wronging God
▪ God is not indifferent to anything in his creation. ▪ The example of a loving creator God should lead human beings to act lovingly towards animals ▪ Inflicting pain on any living creature is incompatible with living in a Christ-like way ▪ Jesus told human beings to be kind to the weak and helpless, Christians should therefore show compassion to animals ▪ To love those who cannot love you in the same way is a unique way of acting with generous love. ▪ It is a great good to take responsibility for the welfare of others, including animals.
Andrew Linzey The leading modern Christian writer on animal rights is Andrew Linzey. God’s love is intended not just for human beings but for all creatures Animals have not been placed on the earth merely for the use of humans, in our understanding of this we can have a far great spiritual appreciation of the worth of creation. We need to look at creation from God’s point of view and not humanity’s. - Creation exists for God not humanity. -God loves creation -God put himself into creation and died on the Cross for it. Since God cares for all creation so much, human beings should care for all creation Humans should care for animals as they are part of God’s creation. By mistreating animals we are wronging God by violating his right to have the whole of his creation respected.
What do the experts say? …Some theories Peter Albert David Singer Equal Consideration of Interests Approach Tom Regan: Subjects-of-a-life- Rights-based approach Gary Francione Abolitionism -animals need only one right, the right not to be owned.
So what does The Roman Catholic say about animal rights? The Papal Encyclical ‘Evangelium Vitae’ (1995) recognises that animals have both an intrinsic value and a place in God's kingdom. Adherents must avoid anything that brings unnecessary suffering or death to animals. Catholics can look to the Church’s Catechism to support their ethics on life.
And what does the Catechism say? 373 In God's plan man and woman have the vocation of "subduing" the earth as stewards of God. This sovereignty is not to be an arbitrary and destructive domination. God calls man and woman, made in the image of the Creator "who loves everything that exists", to share in his providence toward other creatures; hence their responsibility for the world God has entrusted to them. 2416 Animals are God's creatures. He surrounds them with his providential care. By their mere existence they bless him and give him glory. Thus men owe them kindness. We should recall the gentleness with which saints like St. Francis of Assisi or St. Philip Neri treated animals. 2418 It is contrary to human dignity to cause animals to suffer or die needlessly. (however 2417 sees that it is legitimate to use animals for food and clothing, Medical and scientific experimentation on animals is a morally acceptable practice if it remains within reasonable limits and contributes to caring for or saving human lives.) beings were made in the image of God, and God chose human form for his earthly life. Furthermore, God clearly decreed that human beings should have power over non-human animals.
Organisations that work against abuse. www. Rspca.org.au www.wspa.org.au – animal welfare and preventing animal cruelty www.ard.org.au - animal rights advocate www.animalrights.org.au – animal rights and rescue www.alv.org.au – animal liberationVictoria www.actionforanimals.com - anfa www.animalsaustralia.org – animals Australia – th voice for animals www.peta.org – people for the thical treatment of animals – peta
Animal Rights- a universal declaration http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2egxJ1YYKF4 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2egxJ1YYKF4
Lets talk about it…. Have you ever seen others abuse animals in our world? What examples of animal abuse do you hear about in the news today? Where might we see examples of passive abuse in our world? Do you think young people are more aware of the rights of animals in our world today?
A Poem So many gods, so many creeds, So many paths that wind and wind, While just the art of being kind Is all the sad world needs. I am the voice of the voiceless; Through me the dumb shall speak, Till the deaf world's ear be made to hear The wrongs of the wordless weak. From street, from cage and from kennel, From stable and zoo, the wail Of my tortured kin proclaim the sin Of the mighty against the frail.
Oh shame on the mothers of mortals, Who have not stooped to teach Of the sorrow that lies in dear, dumb eyes, The sorrow that has no speech. The same force formed the sparrow That fashioned man the king; The God of the whole gave a spark of soul To furred and feathered thing. And I am my brother's keeper And I will fight his fight, And speak the word for beast and bird, Till the world shall set things right. Ella Wheeler Wilcox 1850-1919 from http://www.think-differently-about-sheep.com/Animal_Rights_A_History.htm
A Prayer God said to Moses, “Remove the sandals from your feet, for the place on which you are standing is holy ground.” Exodus 3:5 O God, maker of heaven and earth, of all that is, seen and unseen: You place us in your creation, and you command us to care for it. Your works declare glory and splendor, and you call us to praise and reverence. Where we have degraded or destroyed earth’s bounty, forgive us. Where we have taken beauty and majesty for granted, have mercy upon us. Where we have become estranged from the creatures with whom we share this planet, grant us your peace. Renew us in the waters of baptism, refresh us with the winds of your spirit, and sustain us with the bread of life. In the name of Jesus Christ, and for the sake of the new creation, we pray. Amen. Earth Day Prayer of Confession. Copyright 2005 Ken Carter. Used with permission.