Each year, millions of animals die because of the experiments they endure in laboratories that use animal testing.
The two sides in the animal testing debate are the animal activists who oppose testing and the scientists who support it.
Both arguments have valid points, but to me, perhaps because I like animals more than people, the misery of innocent animals outweighs any scientific advances it brings. They are still living beings that can feel pain.
The two most common experiments in animal testing are the Draize Test and the LD50 test.
The Draize Test is one “wherein a drop of the substance that has to be tested is dropped in the animal’s eye and the observations are recorded,” according to Abhijit Naik in “The History of Animal Testing.”
The LD50 is one “wherein a group of animals is fed a particular substance until half of the animals in the group die.”
The pain and suffering caused by such experiments is unnecessarily cruel, and it would be illegal if the same experiments were inflicted on humans.
Other than the experiments performed on the animals being cruel, the animals are also subjected to poor living conditions within the confines of a laboratory.
Furthermore, the results of animal testing can be inaccurate because animals respond to chemicals differently than humans do.
“Of the drugs marketed between 1976 and 1985, 52 percent were found to be more dangerous to humans than previously indicated by animal studies,” said “Vegan Peace” reporter Wanda Embar.
In addition, there have been many advances in non-animal testing methods in recent years, such as cell and skin culture research.
Because the results are often inaccurate and scientific advances have created tests that do not require animals, animal testing has been made unnecessary and should not be used.
Charles Magel, a professor of philosophy and animal rights activist, has said, “Ask the experimenters why they experiment on animals, and the answer is: ‘Because the animals are like us.’
“Ask the experimenters why it is morally OK to experiment on animals, and the answer is: ‘Because the animals are not like us.’ Animal experimentation rests on a logical contradiction.”
A way to support the anti-animal testing cause is to buy products that were not tested on innocent animals. For instance, Burt’s Bees and PURE organic products are all cruelty-free. Take the time to check labels and know exactly what you are buying. It could one day help an animal.
Paige Jurgensen can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.