Written by PETA
In case you haven't heard of him, Tom Regan is a philosophy professor at NC State who has been one of the most important and compelling advocates for animal rights in the academic world since early on in the movement. His clarity of expression and his passion for the subject make his thinking accessible to anyone—whether they've studied philosophy or not—and this video, which I discovered recently on YouTube, is a great example of Professor Regan's prodigious abilities, both as a thinker and as an advocate for animals.
The excerpt is from a debate that took place in 1989 for the BBC—it's well worth watching and passing around to friends who may be new to the philosophy behind animal rights.
My boss, Tracy, sent me this great photo her brother Brad took last week while he was touring Russia with the Rolling Stones (yeah, I know, some people just end up with really fun jobs). Here's what Brad said about the image:
"This photo was taken on a back street around the "Novisky Prospekt" neighborhood of St.Petersburg. I was surprised and pleased to see this message in a place where most of the kids you see are homeless and just looking for their next meal or a stronger solvent to inhale. Most of the graffiti I saw in these neighborhoods reflected the blossoming "white power" or "russia for russians" movements at a time when skinheads have just beaten to death 4 African exchange students in St Peterburg. For this reason, this pleasant image really caught my attention with its positive message."
If you haven’t heard about the little tiff we’re having with eBay at the moment, the point of contention is that the company refuses to prohibit the sale of live cats and dogs—as well as items lined with dog fur—on its Chinese website. Which, honestly, this is really an issue that everyone can get on board with, especially once you see the photos posted by eBay sellers showing animals chained to cages on the streets, puppies trapped in wire-bottomed cages, and other horrors that would be more suitable in an animal-cruelty case file than on an international auction site that’s supposed to have a code of ethics. Well, since the company has been turning a deaf ear to our pleas, this morning, we took them straight to the shareholders: Our fearless campaigner Deedra spoke at the Boston eBay shareholder meeting, while my friends Melissa and Julie stood outside to let passersby know exactly what’s going on at eBay China. Check it out, and if you’d like to write to eBay about this issue, click here.
I hope day 2 of Be Kind to Animals Week is treating you well. This one's a wee bit controversial, but I thought it would be a good time to address the issue of purebred animals, especially given some of the surprising comments I've been seeing from so-called "responsible" breeders on a recent entry about some landmark legislation that's being pushed through in California to help cats and dogs. PETA's position on "responsible" breeding is that there just ain't no such thing, because every animal that a breeder sells means an animal in a shelter who won’t find a home. The harsh reality of the situation is that, with 6 to 8 million animals handled by animal shelters in the United States every year—3 to 4 million of whom won't make it out alive—deliberately breeding cats and dogs is about as irresponsible (and frankly, cruel) as it gets.
Anyway, without getting too preachy here, one great way to celebrate Be Kind to Animals Week is, if you or anyone you know is thinking about getting a pet, be sure to adopt them from a shelter. And if you happen to be running a breeding operation, frickin' stop it.
Here's a link to some more info on the topic. And here's a link (this one kind of dates me) to the only good kind of Breeders. Kim Deal rocks.
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Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights? Read more.