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Animal Rights Atharva Abhyankar and Sulaayman Ahmed.

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1 Animal Rights Atharva Abhyankar and Sulaayman Ahmed

2 What are “Animal Rights”? Animals must not be exploited, harmed or abused Animals are protected by law from cruelty and neglect Some creatures cannot be kept as pets such as dangerous dogs or rare birds Testing on animals is inspected to ensure animals are not suffering too much There are strict rules about animals being transported and slaughtered

3 What are the issues? There are many issues related to Animal Rights There are many issues related to Animal Rights Zoos Zoos Sports, horse racing, bullfighting Sports, horse racing, bullfighting Testing Testing Eating meat (and the ways in which the animals are slaughtered) Eating meat (and the ways in which the animals are slaughtered)

4 Zoos Most religious people accept zoos if the animals are kept in conditions close to what it would be like in the wild. Religious people recognize that zoos can help to preserve animal species through breeding programmes.

5 Meat Christianity and Islam have no laws about avoiding meat. After the flood Noah was told he was allowed to eat the animals and Muslims must follow the halal rules. Muslims cannot eat pork, carrion or blood according to the Quran. Buddhists can eat meat as the Buddha accepted meat from his followers. However, Buddhists should avoid harming animals (the First Precept) and occupations such as butchers and fishing may result in bad karma. These jobs are NOT Right Livelihood.

6 Sports/Hunting Sports involving the use of animals include bull fighting, horse racing, greyhound racing and fox hunting. Sports that involve the death of animals are often called ‘blood sports’. HUNTING People in the Arctic still rely on hunting animals to feed themselves Fox hunting was banned in 2004 but many supported it because foxes are pests which attack and kill livestock. RELIGIOUS VIEWS ON HUNTING Some Christians think hunting is OK because we should control the animals. Other Christians think we have a duty to protect and care for Gods creation. Buddhists are against hunting as it breaks the First Precept (harming life). Buddhists would also see the gambling associated with horse racing as being linked to the Three Poisons (greed, ignorance and hatred). Blood sports will result in bad karma and poor rebirths. Islam teaches that animals have feelings and a reason for living. Muslims can hunt animals for food but not for sport. If Muslims kill an animal for no good reason they will have to answer to Allah.

7 Clothes/Ivory Over 55 million animals a year are killed for the fur trade. Fur farms use cruel methods of slaughter such as electrocution and fur farming was banned in There are no fur farms in the UK, but you can buy fur. Supporters of the fur trade argue that the fur industry involves lots of jobs and is worth up to £500 million a year in the UK alone.

8 Experimentation Some religious people don’t agree with scientists ‘playing God’ and interfering with nature by cloning or genetic modification (see below as well). Most Christians accept testing on animals so long as it is to find a cure for diseases. Buddhists are generally against because of the First Precept – not to harm living things. It could lead to bad karma and rebirth. It does not show metta – loving kindness. However, if the intention is good (i.e. saving lives), it could be seen as Right Intention. Animals have had legal rights in Islam since the 13th century. Caging animals is forbidden in Islam. Many Muslims accept animal testing to find a cure for diseases so long as the suffering is minimal.

9 Christian Views Most Christians believe that animals do not have rights but humans should not be cruel to animals and that farmers should care for their animals humanely. The 10 Commandants suggest animals should rest on the Sabbath. However, God gave humans the right to control animals as according to Genesis (in the Bible) God gave man ‘dominion’ (power) to ‘subdue’ (control) animals. This suggests we can use them for our benefit. Animals do not have souls whereas humans do. Moreover, humans are made ‘in God’s image’ and animals are not. On the other hand, God appointed ‘man’ as steward of the animals. This suggests we should look after them. It is called ‘stewardship’. God is also the creator of animals as well as humans and the Bible says that humans should respect God’s creation. Saint Francis of Assisi is an example of a Christian who cared for animals as part of God’s creation.

10 Buddhist Views Most Christians believe that animals do not have rights but humans should not be cruel to animals and that farmers should care for their animals humanely. The 10 Commandants suggest animals should rest on the Sabbath. However, God gave humans the right to control animals as according to Genesis (in the Bible) God gave man ‘dominion’ (power) to ‘subdue’ (control) animals. This suggests we can use them for our benefit. Animals do not have souls whereas humans do. Moreover, humans are made ‘in God’s image’ and animals are not. On the other hand, God appointed ‘man’ as steward of the animals. This suggests we should look after them. It is called ‘stewardship’. God is also the creator of animals as well as humans and the Bible says that humans should respect God’s creation. Saint Francis of Assisi is an example of a Christian who cared for animals as part of God’s creation.


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