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Are humans the only animals to have rights?

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by BassyBill, May 9, 2010.

  1. BassyBill

    BassyBill The smooth moderator... Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 12, 2005
    West Midlands UK
    Title says it, mostly. I'm not talking about the extreme views of some groups here, btw. Just curious about general views of the TB readership.
  2. Marlat


    Sep 17, 2002
    London UK
    What do you mean by "have rights"? I guess you'd have to define what a right is for the purpose of your question. It's unarguable that some animals have legal protections in place so if that's all you mean by a right then the thread is over. If you mean some sort of philosophical notion of right that trancends law. Well that's a whole other debate!
  3. Major Metal? You changed your username and avatar to the same one some other guy here has. Clever, but I still won't participate.

  4. BassyBill

    BassyBill The smooth moderator... Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 12, 2005
    West Midlands UK
    You just did.
  5. BassyBill

    BassyBill The smooth moderator... Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 12, 2005
    West Midlands UK
    It's the definition of "rights" that's the whole point, of course.
  6. Marlat


    Sep 17, 2002
    London UK
    So why not just ask "what is a right"?
  7. RWP


    Jul 1, 2006
    I think all animals should have the right to not be treated cruelly. For instance I wonder if crabs feel pain when they are tossed into a pot of boiling water to be cooked. That seems cruel to me. :eyebrow: However, killing animals quickly at a slaughterhouse is not.
  8. jmattbassplaya

    jmattbassplaya Looking for a gig around East Islip, NY!

    Jan 13, 2008
    This thread isn`t going anywhere without definitional clarity... otherwise you are going to get "the extreme" views.
  9. L-A


    Jul 17, 2008
    Ah, that's a good one. Rights seem to be something we agree on to keep most people in societal equality. Natural equality, in itself, does not exist. Thus, "natural" rights are not an allowance of status, but one of action. Animals have the right to live, and to try whatever they might try to do. Hunt, flee, eat, reproduce.

    Rights are something that grew out of our morale, which is in itself subjective. Animals have a subconscious knowledge of what they need for their, and their species' survival. We kind of lost this, and over time developed something else that brings us where we are today, able to live in a context where abundant anonymous proximity does not mean complete chaos.

    My opinion isn't really set right now, but I hope I provide some sort of basis for the discussion.
  10. BassyBill

    BassyBill The smooth moderator... Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 12, 2005
    West Midlands UK
    Because I thought the context might make for a decent discussion. Sometimes examining an issue can generate some more widely applicable ideas. That could be one reason why I'm genuinely interested in folks' response to the the OP, I suppose (but not the only one).

    Let's see where it goes - hopefully, it will be interesting if it doesn't become polarised in a dumb way.
  11. murphy


    May 5, 2004
    Toronto, Canada
    Slaughter houses are not quick and humane killing environments.

    The animals are subjected to terror before dying and the methods used are often slow and not effective in the first attempt.

    There is also the heap of injured and diseased animals left to suffer unattended.

    Don't forget the journey there is usually in overcrampt freezing cold trucks on highways

    What gives us the RIGHT to cause suffering to animals?
    yet we do it everyday in our farming practices and experimentation and testing.
    Time To Wake up!!!
  12. Unrepresented

    Unrepresented Something Borderline Offensive

    Jul 1, 2006
    San Diego, CA
    "Rights" are a euphamism for the dividend that a collective returns to its individuals.

    Human "rights" are expressed in the form of a codified structure, but other than that they're little different from getting a spoil of the kill in any other collective group.
  13. hdracer


    Feb 15, 2009
    Elk River, MN.
    NO! But they do deserve to be treated with respect.
  14. XtreO


    Jan 2, 2008
    All animals have the right not to be mistreated. At least here. I also think all animals should be given freedom of speech as a legal right. I mean, I've never heard a deer's point of view on when we are allowed to hunt him, and that must be because they are silenced by missing rights to express themselves freely.
  15. Happynoj


    Dec 5, 2006
    I like turtles.
    I'm opposed to animal cruelty for cruelty's sake, but I'm not especially opposed to animal testing, as long as it is something worthy. Like cosmetic testing seems a bit superficial, whereas cancer drugs seems fair enough.

    I regard our eating of animals as natural selection - the cows that didn't run away fast enough got caught and bred in captivity to feed humans, and until lions and sharks stop giving in to their instincts and killing for food, I don't see why humans should.
  16. superfunk47


    Sep 9, 2007
    I'm big on animal rights. I love animals. That said, I'm not against killing animals for food, but I think some attention aught to be paid to how it's done. A touch of humanity and respect in the process of ending another creature's life so that we can eat wouldn't be extraordinarily expensive in the long run.

    For example, a lot of Native American tribes have prayers for when they catch a fish and kill it - they apologize for having to kill it, but thank it for feeding them. I'm not pushing for anything even that elaborate, just some demonstration of respect for the creatures. Humane execution would be nice, as well. Neither necessarily has to be a huge, expensive thing, so I really don't see any reason not to.
  17. murphy


    May 5, 2004
    Toronto, Canada
    If you can hunt an animal in the wild and eat it for dinner fine. but guns?

    Factory farming is not generally a very humane practice
  18. superfunk47


    Sep 9, 2007
    No, but who's to say that it couldn't be if we made the effort?

    As for the first point, what's inherently more humane about hunting an animal in the wild (presumably with bow/arrows, which take much longer to kill in a lot of cases)? If an effort is made to create a humane living and dying situation for farm animals, what would the advantage be?
  19. Jefenator

    Jefenator Supporting Member

    Aug 22, 2008
    I extend more "rights" to my cat than she does to me. :bag:
  20. Too bad they don't kill animals quickly at slaughterhouses. :meh:

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