Is it ethical to use…
(Sherry, 1994, pg. 7). This breakdown shows how the animal rights movement involves manydifferent components, but it also shows that the defining characteristic of animal rights is thequestion of whether animals deserve to be treated in ways that would be considered unacceptablein humans. The example of animals in research is a good example. If we do not feel that it isright to test humans because it is unsafe, then how it is it right to test animals when it is unsafe tothem as well? Sherry
asks, “Do animals have rights? If so, the question is whether we violate
these rights when we use animals for our own purposes (1994, pg. 3
Contrary to what the media and organizations like PETA (People for the EthicalTreatment of Animals) may portray, animal rights supporters do not all suggest freeing researchanimals from their cages, protesting in the street, or even being a vegetarian. The animal rightsmovement has a long history of supporting federal legislation. The earliest example of this wasthe passage of the Cruelty to Animals Act in 1876 in England. The law banned vivisection, theact of cutting an animal open while it was living (Sherry, 1994, pg. 73). Animal rights acts havebeen introduced steadily into law since then in both Europe and America. Another notable pieceof legislation is the Animal Welfare Acts of 1976 (USA), which allowed the federal governmentto regulate animal testing in research and to set up humane processes for research (Sherry, 1994,pg. 74). Other animal rights acts protect animals from fighting (dog and cock fighting mainly),inhumane treatment of animals bred for slaughter, and endangered species (Sherry, 1994).When looking at all the legislation, it is easy to think that animals rights is a battle that
has been fought and won, but today‟s animal rights activists would tell you a very different story.
A simple search on Google pulls up over 180,000 news results for animal rights. These includecircus protesters, activists calling for horse racing reform, and anti-hunting groups, among