Conflict Is Always Present When Progress Happens

Gay rights supporters, feminists, and other civil rights groups have become known to most humans today. However there is another, equally as radical group, making itself heard. The anti-Animal testing groups. Some of these groups have burned down university buildings, broken into labs, flung open cage doors and freed cats, rabbits, rats, and dogs being used In medical research. Such actions, while great, have distorted the issue surrounding the use of animals in the search for cures for disease and for the development of new knowledge of the human body.

The simple fact is that animal experimentation is necessary for the betterment of mankind. The anti-animal testing groups’ arguments range from the emotional to the spiritual and philosophical. They argue that experimental surgery causes pain and distress to animals. They belive that there are alternatives to the use of animals that are more humane. Some anti-animal testers claim that many of the studies conducted on animals could be programmed for computer use and thereby reduce or even abolish the need for experiments on living animals.

Still others argue that all forms of life-including animals should be preserved and fostered rather than experimented upon. I’ll say one thing the arguments put forward by the anti-testing groups do appear quite convincing. Why, after all, would anyone want to kill a defenseless cat or dog? However, the anti-testing stance is scientifically philosophically, and logically impossible. By their obsession with alleged pain and suffering of animals used in medical research, anti-testers are ranking animal life at thr same importance as human existence and improvement.

It is interesting to note that most of them eat meat, yet the meat industry, which slaughter millions of animals annually, hardly finds it necessary to defend its activities against them. Animals serve as experimental subjects in teaching surgical operations and techniques; in testing the efficiency and safety of drugs; in psychological studies of pain, stress, and depression; and in helping scientist learn more about the biological processes. Some of the examples of the benefits gained from animal experimentation will make clear its contribution to human well being.

Years ago, infectious disease was the cause of most deaths in the industrialized world. Today infectious disease ranks among the lowest causes of death because of the development of vaccines, which were tested on animals. The toxic effects of many antibiotics and other medicinal agents were first recognized through their applications in animals. The identification of thalidomide as a teratogen and the discovery of polio played an important role in the development of new surgical, therapeutic, and electronic devices used to fight diseases associated with the cardiovascular system.

Thousands of coronary bypass operations are done annually; their success can be traced to the fact that they were originally performed on animals. Animals remain the key for further progress in our conquest of cancer. Other tests are now being done for cures to such long-time illnesses such as hepatitis and leprosy. It is clear, then, that animal experimentation has proven beneficial in the search for cures to illnesses that affect mankind. Some anti-testing groups have recently claimed that studies conducted on animals could be programmed for computer analysis and thereby eliminate the need for experimentation on live animals.

But computers have been used since their establishment in biological research and, with their growing complexity; have extended the limits of investigation. If anything, computer availability has contributed to the increasing demand for animals for research. To suggest that Computer could replace animal experimentation printouts are totally unrealistic. Operations that were impossible or highly dangerous a few years ago are regularly accomplished today with a high degree of safety, thanks to extensive experimentation on inferior animals.

This is particularly true in the area of neurology. The human brain is most complex and superbly designed structure known. Our understanding of its functions, such as intelligence and memory, is extremely limited. Without the use of experimental animals, particularly those whose body systems are similar to that of man, we will be unable to crack the mysteries of cerebral performance. Without experimental surgery on animals, we will never be able to develop now and improved methods for the treatment of neurological diseases, many of which are now incurable.

Some anti-testing groups argue that all life is sacred and that therefore it is morally wrong to use lower animals in research and teaching. But medical scientists answer that there is simply no historical. Biological, philosophical, or theological justification for applying the principles of human morality and ethics to nonhuman creatures. Anti-testing groupss are really saying that the suffering of animals is of greater moral weight than the advancement of human understanding and the easing of human suffering.

How can it be right to use animals to provide food for humans but wrong to use them to provide food for thought? The anti-animal testing stance can be supported only if one believes that the moral value attached to the evasion of animal suffering is greater than the moral value attached to the easing of human suffering. If we are to continue our search for cures to combat the many illnesses that affect mankind, and if we are to ease suffering and improve the quality of our lives, then we must continue to rely upon animal experimentation.

Animal research has been popularly known and applied in experiments and investigations in universities, medical schools and in most laboratories. Researchers make use of more than fifty to one hundred million animals as research subjects. Over, the years, the use …

For many centuries people have experimented on animals. The two main reasons for doing this is first, to find out more about the animals themselves, and, secondly, to test out substances and procedures to see if they are harmful and …

Animal testing in research has always been a subject of much debate. Animal welfare groups argue that using animals for testings purposes is unethical while researchers point out that animal testing is necessary for the benefit of mankind and even …

Medical scientists unceasingly work to find cures for human ailments. With advanced technology they are able to conduct their research through computer simulation. In some instances they do their tests on patients directly. There are, however, cases when their only …

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