Week 6 - Wei-Yi Lin on Animal Carcass.

Scientific experiments that involve animal testing have always been a controversial issue whether or not is the performance of such a necessary cost and who would monitor scientists from abusing animals. Carol Gigliotti expresses her concern in her article “Leonardo’s choice: the ethics of artists working with genetic technologies” that there are approximately 20 million cases of animal testing of all kinds performed in the United States as compared to roughly 60 million animal cases worldwide annually. We do more animal experiments than any other country and this raises a question about the rights and voices of these victimized animals in our home, where we uphold individual freedom and rights of a being. She even cites Leonardo da Vinci as an example that science doesn’t always have to sacrifice animals to proof an objective. Though her arguments are aesthetic and sound, I find her consideration regarding the practicability and usefulness of animal testing are not present in her thirteen page research paper. As a result, the arguments are romantic and visionary but not practical and convincing.

I feel that animal testing is not cruel; in fact, it’s a beautiful way to investigate efficiency or even fatality of a drug from a biotechnological point of view. Regardless of how accurate and caution we have taken the chemical formulae and mathematical calculations in designing a drug, without animal testing, how can we assure patients that they work even if they are approved to be safe by the FDA (wait a minute, how can FDA proof it to be safe without performing a life specimen testing?). In fact, I feel artists and scientists are very alike on the point that not everyone accepts their work, whether it’s a drug or a painting, but they are all determined to claim points of their own which they think might serve the public somewhat positively. Under this basis to serve the well interest of beings (includes animals and humans), animals and scientists are simply nuts and screws of the biotechnological processes.

The issue about animal right is debatable. For animal activists, what are you seeking to protect? What are your objectives? To eradicate all animal testing on earth? Even if some turn to be moderate by claiming to establish a system which assures the right and integrity of the animals are not compromised nor abused in experiments (such as dumping animal carcass into trash cans after use), they are just being vague because by what standards and who are going to set rules of this game? It doesn’t mean that scientists win the debate because they do kill a hell of animals with little research outcomes produced. This reflects scientists’ indifference while killing a mouse or dissecting a cloned sheep when animals are performed in experiments. To elevate the argument to a macroscopic view apart from the two camps, in my opinion, people are just using animals to start a “right” war of endless debate; no one has a clear mind of what they want to achieve or defend because there is no point of doing so. Ultimately, animals remain victims. Still.

Expressed solemnly by Wei-Yi Lin.

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