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Hands Off the Adorable Monkeys, NASA

Written by PETA | November 6, 2009
usatoday / CC
squirrel monkey

Victory Update: Following a year of vigorous campaigning, PETA has learned that government officials have grounded plans for a cruel and ineffective radiation experiment on monkeys. Learn more about this victory for monkeys.

You may remember that years back, PETA was instrumental in getting NASA out of the monkey business when we successfully pushed the agency to cancel plans to launch straightjacketed, electrode-implanted monkeys into space. So, as you can imagine, we leapt to attention when we learned recently that the mad scientists at NASA want to blast up to 28 squirrel monkeys with a massive dose of gamma rays in order to “simulate” the space radiation they would be exposed to if they were humans on a three-year mission to Mars (which they aren’t, but apparently NASA isn’t one to quibble over details).

The monkeys will then spend the rest of their lives being forced to perform a host of “behavioral tasks” to assess how the radiation affected their brains. Although NASA has repeatedly told the media that these monkeys won’t be killed, they left out the teensy detail that earlier radiation experiments NASA has conducted on monkeys have caused the animals to suffer from fatal cancers, including brain tumors.

We asked NASA to halt these cruel and pointless experiments in a letter we sent to the agency this week. No answer yet, but in the meantime, please let NASA know how you feel about its plans to experiment on monkeys.

Written by Alisa Mullins

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  • Mostafa mahmoud says:

    Animals have the full rights to live happy lives like us. It is cruel to use them for experiments and these lethal experiments should stop.

  • Bryan says:

    If NASA wants to send people to live on Moon or Mars they can not because, of unknown long term effects of radiation. If drug companies want to develop new medical treatments, they cant because of legal risks of going direct to human trials. There are no alternatives to test on animals other than using people on life support who are brain dead. Countries like China and Iran don’t have a problem testing on animals and criminals. The way the world collectively and unknowingly destroys the environment, is the same as your I`ll informed and idealistic actions are destroying Americas last edge in the world.

  • Dena says:

    Shaking my head…my heart aches. How can we still be so cold in this modern era?

  • MMora says:

    why the animals?, God is watching and soon your time will come

  • andee says:

    i agree hurting animals is shameful and mean but hurting humans is just as bad if not worse. some of you people keep repeating how NASA should instead use people but what are people but overgrown “civilized” monkeys themselves.

  • Eleni Comens says:

    What does a monkey care about outer space If you want answers send Humans! volunteered of course!earth life is interesting lets learn more about our home planet and how to cohabit here with all living beings.

  • Florence says:

    I agree with Andi’s comments!! but if someone is on deathrow why not give them a choice to volunteer. In doing so they can make a diffence for animals.

  • steph says:

    I am all for scientific advancement but there are other more humane ways then testing on animals. It makes me sad that these poor animals that cannot even defend themselves are being used in these horrible ways. If there is another way to test whatever it is you are testing do so on something that is not living and breathing. I am no saint but I hope that whomever it is at NASA that is directing these tests can see the wrongs in how they are going about what they are doing and find a more humane and less cruel way to obtain results. After all if you were one of these monkeys would you like what you are doing?

  • jackie marinelli says:

    This has to stop. It is cruel and unusal punishment to subject innocent animals to something like this. We don’t need to know how humans will respond to radiation. We already know. Besides Obama has cancelled the space program. Give the scientists massive doses of radiation and see how they respond if they want to experiement. At least they have a choice to say no.

  • Helen says:

    It is my own personal opinion that NASA is trying to justify the money that is being spent. That is the only reason for this experimentation.

  • Sonya Armenia says:

    This is so wrong you can’t do this. Why are you wanting to find out about other worlds anyway? I think this world needs sorting out first! Why don’t you test it on your self coz its you that wants to know. Animals have no choice DO THEY ! I think you know what will happen to them we all know that if you don’t you are just thick ! JUST LEAVE THEM ALONE !!!!!!!

  • Doris says:

    I agree with the person that say they should use criminals the ones that have confessed to have killed children etc to these kinds of tests. That way they would do a little bit to pay for their crimes. Leave alone the inocent litle angels . This animals don’t deserve such cruelty and we have no right to use them for that.

  • Laura Whitworth says:

    Once again I am horrified sickened and heartbroken…

  • Jason says:

    andi If not for scientists you wouldn’t even be reading this much less hear about this. If it wasn’t for scientists you would be living in hut because if it wasn’t for their discoveries you buildings wouldn’t function properly… no power pottable water and so forth. As for those who support the protestors and those protesting. How about going to school and learning about what the purpose of science and all that it has contributed to the human race. Better yet you’re on the web… GOOGLE IT! If animals were in our position they would do the same to further their speices… That’s just the way nature works. Its called the food chain if you can eat it you dominate it.

  • andi says:

    To those suggesting NASA experiment instead on prisoners on death row or in Guantanamo Bay really bad idea. Don’t forget that sometimes you don’t have to be guilty of a crime to get sent to prison happens all the time. What I propose is that whomever wants the experiment done should allow themselves to be experimented on the socalled scientists. NASA has a despicable record for animal abuse using animals then throwing them away like garbage or farming them out to vivisection labs. Billions of dollars and lives wasted over the past decades. The last time I checked I don’t believe animals ever volunteer for vivisection and I believe it should be completely abolished. Also you should boycott all pharmaceutical drugs they’re toxic chemicals and instead educate yourselves about plantbased medicine. Even diabetes can be cured with plantbased diet. Scientists? Who need them? They should all go radiate themselves.

  • May says:

    This is heinous and you can’t stop. I am concerned with animal welfare occasionally animal rights. I belong to NO group. I am just one person who finds your cruelty unacceptable and I will work in every way to make you stop the sonar testing on marine animals and this project as well. SEND AN ILLEGAL ALIENMURDERER. SEND A GUANTANAMO TERRORIST PRISONER YOU IDIOTS!

  • Brian says:

    It’s nauseatingly horrible to experiment on monkeys. Is there a NASA document explaining the details? Or a second perhaps more credible source good journalists have several? NASA is a fairly open responsive agency with a documented history of animal exploitation. It should be obvious. Regardless of what’s going on and I think something is blindly going along with one news story without question makes it easy for any media outlet or even one person to play the community however they like. Other people have agendas where using us is very lucrative and perhaps standard practice.

  • Brigitte von Bulow says:

    Dear people at Nasa are you nuts? Nugh said.

  • Honeypot says:

    Dear Brilliant Scientists You Go First. Signed A Concerned Monkey

  • darlene miranda says:

    im in 9 th grade a proud vegetarian for years and i even know thats not fair to these amimals

  • Randi says:

    NASAleave the monkeys alone use the morons whom are waiting the death penalty in prisons wasting peoples tax $$$$ waiting breathing eating screw them they deserve this not the monkeys these Lab experiments and your stupid idea all needs testings done on humans not innocent animalswake up

  • The Wandering Scientist says:

    Brien Shut down NASA? That’s insane. You seem to be one of those people that go extreme over minor things death to every person that eats meat etc.. While I would like to see alternatives made I do not think that NASA should be shut down. Don’t get me wrong monkeys and people are equal in my opinion but if we understand the universe we understand physics which leads to newer cleaner technologies and in turn creates less polution so we do not tear down forests and ruin natural habitats. Maybe humans will completely leave the Earth and settle a new planet eventually and animal abuse will literally be a thing of the past. Even if science and technology is worthless to you you can at least see amazing pictures of nebulae and realize that we are all specks of dust in this vast universe because that is all that we are. The sun can shoot up solar flares tommorow and literally wipe out the power grid and leave us without electricity for years. Without electricity planes will crash factories can’t produce items including that thing called FOOD and the world would be plunged into the dark ages once again. If that was to happen millions upon millions of people will be dead from starvation especially in metropolitan areas around the world and would end the human race as we know it. I am sure that some people would like to see that happen coughpeoplelikeyoucough but it frankly makes me sick when people refuse to recognize science and its importance and would like to see institutions such as NASA shut down. While I do think that there are some organizations that are receiving money that should be going to peopleanimals who really need it I am looking at YOU ACORN I simply do not think that NASA is one of them. But NASA do we really need to confirm that gamma rays are bad for multicellular organisms? It’s like cleaning breadcrumbs from a toaster with a fork when you know what the consequences are.

  • Sammy Girl says:

    STUPID STUPID STUPID!!! Why would u send innocoant creatures off into some unknown terratory in space?!?! And how are monkeys supposed to explore Mars anyway?!?! THIS IS SAMMY GIRL SPEAKING AND I SAY “STOP THE ANIMAL CRULETY”!!!!!!!! Poor monkeys…… Please stop NASA!

  • mooly says:

    if people want 2 explor space then THEY CAN DO IT THEMSELVES!!!!!! those poor monkeys!!! they have feelings 2!! maby if they would think about it they wouldnt do it!!! how would u like 2 be blasted with radition and not have say i mean really!!! how would u like 2 be in space half your life and then come back and have CANCER!!! THAT IS CRULE AND SELFISH!!!

  • Bree says:

    I would do the expiriments. The way i see it animals should be treated as humans would and viceversa. We’re animals too and people think because we’re smart we’re better. NO. Many animals are smarter the only difference is they cant write everything they know in a book. We’re just conceided.

  • carla says:

    NASA You should all be ashamed of yourselves. Use some of your own damn people to experiment on and not innocent animals…. Idiots!

  • Patrice Frazier says:

    I’m pretty sure there are plenty of humans willing to do the experiments you’re doing to these monkeys. Try using people who are mentally capable of making a decision like this as opposed to putting innocent animals in such a horrible position.

  • Tawnya Turner says:

    that is beyond messed up humans are animals i hhave believed that for years and probably will my whole life we are just a smarter animal….people need to stop being so cruel

  • Raven says:

    I would like to see the scientists themselves given the gamma ray treatment and see how they feel afterward.

  • lynda downie says:

    Peta staffers thanks for being wellinformed about what’s being done to animals in places like NASA and for taking action and raising public awareness.

  • Brien Comerford says:

    There should be no monkeys sent to space and NASA should be shut down. Its wasted billions of dollars that should have been used to feed starving people and to save endangered animal species on earth.

  • Mia says:

    Why not send 28 straightjacketed innocent babies up there instead? A life is a life. This is ridiculous. I expect more from an organization like NASA.

  • Marilena Rosa says:

    The human being thinks he is the most important in the world and he can do every thing with other animals. But they have feelings pain and streess like us.

  • simara says:

    advancement in science or any area should not include vile violations of any species or cruelty.I encourage NASA and anyone to stop abusing animals.To save a life you should not kill a life to further a life you should not destroy another’s…

  • Shari says:

    How ignorant are these scientist! What a horrible thing to do to these animals. Sometimes “smart” people have no common sense. How about they blast a dose of gamma rays up theirs and leave the animals out of it!

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