Law: Animal Testing Debates
People in developed countries are living longer and fuller lives due to improvements in the quality of their lives and advances in medicine and research. Animal testing, largely, accounts for this unprecedented development. More so, cosmetics industry also heavily employs animal testing. It is noteworthy that fighters for animals’ rights have managed to achieve a lot in their fight. For instance, numerous regulations in research and industries exist (Seidle 454).
Public opinion also makes companies become more responsible. Many companies claim they do not resort to animal testing and numerous laboratories improve conditions for animals. However, animals still suffer as people violate the regulations or overuse animal testing. Even though the issue is debatable, it is clear that animal testing cannot be completely ban but it is also important to look for alternatives and minimize the practice.
It is necessary to note that animal testing did not originate in the twentieth century. The practice dates back as far as ancient times. Ancient Greek researchers carried out vivisections and, in the Middle Ages, it was also a common practice among scientists, which did not arouse any ethical concerns (Franco 239).
On the contrary, people welcomed the practice as it enabled them to make numerous important discoveries in physiology and medicine. First skepticism as for animal testing and the start of debated dates back to the 17th century only (Franco 244). Of course, it especially flourished in the 20th and 21st centuries.
Now many people understand that animal testing is a cruel testing and some researchers are unreasonably cruel. At the same time, some believe that animal testing is necessary for pharmaceutical industry as it helps researchers develop effective medicine to heal such serious diseases as AIDS, blindness, cancer and so on (Ormandy and Schuppli 398).
Fighters for animals’ rights claim that animal testing should be completely eliminated for all spheres and industries irrespective of aims people are trying to achieve. These people stress that it is inhumane to carry out tests and make animals suffer for the sake of people, especially when it comes to cosmetics industry (Seidle 456). One of most common arguments is that welfare of animal cannot be outweighed by humans’ welfare, as all living beings are equally valuable (Marks 109).
They claim that it is possible to use people who will volunteer and want to become the necessary sacrifice. More so, animals’ rights fighters emphasize that animals often have to live in horrible conditions, they get infected by painful and deadly infections, they are injected painful and deadly drugs (Ormandy and Schuppli 398).
However, the arguments have numerous weaknesses. For instance, in some cases there can be no alternative and drugs have to be tested on animals. This practice have led to discovery of numerous drugs that save lives of adults and children. More so, conditions animals are kept in have improved significantly and loads of laws regulating the practice exist.
Therefore, it is clear that animal testing cannot be completely banned and it has to be used though it has to be regulated. Researchers may carry out numerous tests but living beings often react differently and it is important to make sure that that all components of the substance are safe and helpful.
Clearly, it is essential to make sure that the test is absolutely necessary and no other alternative exists. It is also important to make sure that animals are treated properly and no unjustified pain is caused. Thus, researchers may be obliged to prove that test is necessary and justified before implementation of animal testing. This can be done through extensive law enforcement. Policy makers have to develop effective regulations and there should be strict supervision to makes sure that researchers follow them (Bottini and Hartung 14).
For instance, it has been acknowledged that L’Oreal (as well as similar cosmetics companies) claim that they do not resort to animal testing while their partners and suppliers of certain components carry out tests on animals (Bottini and Hartung 11). Besides, numerous illegal laboratories, where regulations are ignored, exist. Obviously, this is an inappropriate practice, which should be eliminated. It is necessary to add that public opinion is against animal testing especially when it comes to cosmetic industry or uncertified laboratories.
It is necessary to note that the position of fighters for animals’ rights is quite similar to the one mentioned above. Both views are based on the principles of humanness and validity. However, animals’ rights fighters strive for complete ban of animal testing in the nearest future, while it is clear that this is impossible and the practice can be stopped in the long run. The fact that the practice should be stopped is the common ground of the two positions.
At the same time, it is necessary to add that animals’ rights fighters are a bit idealistic as they do not provide an alternative but simply state that the practice is vicious. Many researchers understand that animals should not suffer and be sacrificed but they also understand that there is no alternative. Notably, many researchers work on development of such alternatives through cloning and other technological and scientific advances.
In conclusion, it is possible to state that animal testing is a debatable practice. It is associated with numerous ethical issues, as people understand that they do not have the right to use animals as their tools of progress, since every living being is equally precious. At the same time, animal testing has enabled people to develop numerous drugs that have saved millions of people’s lives.
People do not have many options but they still strive for finding alternatives to animal testing. Until that time, regulations should be enhanced and researchers have to be supervised to make sure that no excessive cruelty occurs. Recent advances in technology and science suggest that researchers will be able to avoid using animal tests and will have other effective options.
Bottini, Annamaria A. and Thomas Hartung. “Food for Thought … on the Economics of Animal Testing.” Altex 26.1 (2009): 3-16. Print.
Franco, Nuno Henrique. “Animal Experiments in Biomedical Research: A Historical Perspective.” Animals 3.1 (2013): 238-273. Print.
Marks, Joel. “Innocent and Innocuous: The Case Against Animal Research.” Between the Species X.1 (2010): 98-117. Print.
Ormandy, Elisabeth. H. and Catherine A. Schuppli. “Public attitudes toward Animal Research: A review.” Animals 4.1 (2014): 391-408. Print.
Seidle, Troy. “Humane Society International’s Global Campaign to End Animal Testing.” ATLA 41.1 (2013): 453-459. Print.
Leave a ReplyWant to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!