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la posizione di Singer

Copio quanto risposto direttamente da Singer ad un'attivista che gli chiedeva spiegazioni su quanto letto circa la sua posizione sulla vivisezione. La lettera sotto e' stata inviata anche da Singer all'Observer, ma non so se sia stata pubblicata.

Lo posto solo perche' ne state parlando e magari la sua chiarificazione vi puo' essere di aiuto.



Your story "Animal Guru Gives Tests His Blessing" (Observer, 26/11/06)
suggests that my remarks in the BBC2 documentary "Monkeys, Rats and Me:
Animal Testing" represent a change in my position on animal testing. That impression needs to be corrected.

Neither in my 1975 book Animal Liberation, nor anywhere else, have I ever said that no experiments on animals could ever be justifiable. My position has always been that whether an act is right or wrong depends on its consequences. I do insist, however, that the interests of animals count among those consequences, and that we cannot justify speciesism, which I define as giving less weight to the interests of nonhuman animals than we give to the similar interests of human beings.

In our on-camera discussion, Professor Aziz claimed that experiments he had performed on a small number of monkeys had yielded major benefits for tens of thousands of people suffering from Parkinson's Disease. I replied that if the facts were indeed as he asserted, and there was no other way in which the benefits could have been achieved, such research could be justifiable. Whether the facts are as Professor Aziz claims I shall leave for others to debate.

Professor Aziz is quoted as saying that my remarks are "an encouraging
sign." Before he gets too encouraged, he might consider that in Animal
Liberation I suggested that a test for whether a proposed experiment on
animals is justifiable is whether the experimenter would be prepared to
carry out the experiment on human beings at a similar mental level - say, those born with irreversible brain damage. If Professor Aziz is not
prepared to say that he would think such experiments justifiable, his
willingness to use animals is based on a prejudice against giving their
interests the same weight as he gives to the interests of members of our own species.

Whether or not the occasional experiment on animals is defensible, I remain opposed to the institutional practice of using animals in research, because, despite some improvements over the past thirty years, that practice still fails to give equal consideration to the interests of animals. For that reason I oppose putting more resources into building new facilities for animal experimentation. Instead, these funds should go into clinical research involving consenting patients, and into developing other methods of research that do not involve the harmful use of animals.


Peter Singer

Liberazione Animale Liberazione Umana



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