Monday, April 16, 2012

Three Articles in One Week

This week's UVU Review features three articles on the front page. The two biggest and most prominent ones (including the headline) are both about animal ethics!

The first article (written by one of my students from last fall) is about the research lab in the new science building on campus. They are putting animal holding facilities in a room with a lab for experiments. The current dean of the sciences (I heard) claimed that there would not be any animal research here while he is dean. But eventually, obviously, that is what the room is for.

One of the quotations they used from me might potentially mislead. Among many anti-vivisection things I said, she asked me about transparency and I stated that if they test on animals then there should be transparency (saying I would be "a lot happier"). That might make it sound as though I am ok with it under those conditions, but I am not. I want to make it clear here that (while transparency in labs is way better than opacity), I am categorically against animal testing (and she says so). Here's the article:
The last quotations, from Dr. Bayer, in my opinion, are the vivisection equivalent of greenwashing: they try to make it sound as though all that will happen there will be kind and progressive. Think about it -- they are going to house endangered species in a lab?!! That would not even be legal (with the exception of the US government's ridiculous two-pronged approach to chimp status -- chimps in the wild are considered an endangered species, but chimps in the lab are not -- as if they weren't the same species)! I've seen the plans; this is a lab for testing -- not a conservation zoo. Total greenwash.

The second article is about Peter Young - the activist who liberated all those mink years ago. He spoke at our conference; his talk was amazing. Here's his article (written by one of my current students):

This article also quotes me, and I again want to clarify what I said. What is quoted might be seen as a criticism; it was meant as the opposite. What I perhaps should have said was that Peter 'turns the tables' rather than 'flips the logic'. I thought that Peter was brilliant and that his reasoning (that is often considered 'extreme') actually made tons of sense: we must not be complicit in the torture and murder of animals. If we do nothing to help them then we are not taking this obligation seriously.

(for the record: I do not condone illegal actions; I am just saying that his reasoning made sense and was brilliantly stated).

Finally, I just found out today that there is also an article being written about my Mormons for Animals presentation for Thursday's Herald Journal in Logan. That's a lot of publicity for one week!!!


  1. Chris, thanks for publishing on this topic! I've posted your blog to the LDS Earth Stewardship group:

  2. The Navy is planning to increase its use of Low Frequency Active Sonar, which causes deafness, disorientation, and other harm to whales and dolphins. A petition is circulating to oppose this action: