Animal Rights vs. Human Health – Comparative Essay

Jackie Dansky English 1A – 69 David Banuelos March 10, 2011 Animal Rights vs. Human Health Developments of cures, vaccines and treatments for human illnesses have been done through animal testing. Over 25 million animals are tested each year in the United States (Stephanie Ernst, 2008): “It’s impossible to know exactly how many animals are being used in research because U. S. laws do not require scientists to report how many mice, rats, or birds they use” (ASPCA).

Animals are used to interpret what medicine effects will do to the human body; they will give the closest results. The real question when it comes to animal experimentation is not if it is wrong or right, but if it is for the better. Kristina Cook poses that animal testing has benefited medicine, while Natasha Bantwal presents that more harm is done than helped. Kristina Cook is an Oxford student in the department of chemistry, and wrote “Pro-Test: supporting animal testing,” arguments sustaining animal testing for medical uses.

Natasha Bantwal is a basic writer and wrote “Arguments Against Animal Testing,” arguments opposing the usage of animals for experimentation. A very common argument is that animals are being ‘tortured’ when they are being tested on. Cook approaches the issue quickly stating that “animal rights activists often demonise scientists, pretending that they are sadists who enjoy torturing animals just for the sake of it. There are countless examples of the lengths to which scientists go to minimize the suffering of animals.

But the simple point is that scientists are not sadists: they act in the way that they see fit. ” (Cook, 2006) However, the arguments are beyond that. They share two common grounds: animal testing has helped scientifically and medically, and that animal testing has been erroneous. Although Cook and Bantwal agree that animal testing has been helpful, they have different approaches and viewpoints on how helpful it really has been. Cook declares that “vaccines, antibiotics, transplant surgeries, medical devices… and other developments would not be here today if animal testing ad not been used. ” (Cook, 2006) As a counterargument, Bantwal asserts “the most commonly help perception (or rather misconception) of animal testing is that it is necessary for the development of cures, vaccines, and other treatments for human illness. ” (Bantwal) Animal rights activists are attempting to discontinue all animal testings. There have been alternatives reported, but none can match as much accuracy and precision as animals would.

Bantwal uses cancer as an example of ridding animal testing: “with countless innocent animals, billions of dollars and more than 30 to 40 years being spent on the war against cancer, one would expect concrete results show up if animal experimentation was actually as effective as it is made out to be… Many cancer funds and organizations have claimed that we are now losing the war against cancer because this animal-based cancer research is failing, and it just downright stinks. ” (Bantwal) She implies that animals don’t need to be tested on if they can’t even help to find the cure of big illnesses.

Cook, unlike Bantwal, looks at the glass half full. She considers all the drugs that have been animal tested in the past that have been successful, and looks forward to the more cures that will be discovered through this type of experimentation. All cures and vaccines are tested on animals, but are animals a reliable source when it comes to vaccines? Bantwal discusses about the undependable basis of animals’ effect on a particular drug compared to a human’s effect. For example, she pronounces that there has been no progress in the cure for AIDS because animals are incapable of getting the AIDS disease.

Cook affirms that testing drugs in animal help researchers find the potential dangers and faults it will achieve, and to understand “the metabolism of drug compounds and consequent effects seen throughout the body. ” (Cook, 2006) She states that the alternatives of animal testing, such as a computer generator, won’t be as sufficient. Bantwal states “[Pro-Animal Testing] believe that if animal experimentation is stopped, then it will be at the expense of life and the human health. (Bantwal) She tries to compensate that obliterating any and all animal testing will not have a big changed impact in the medical field. She then argues that “it is dangerous and fraudulent to apply data retrieved from one species to another entirely different species. ” (Bantwal) Cook does admit that there have been errors in the field. Both Cook and Bantwal use the Thalidomide as an example of rebuttal. It came out in 1956 as a sedative for pregnant mothers to overcome morning sickness. It was successful in animal testing, and spread around the world in a few years.

Unfortunately, it caused birth defects in the womb. Bantwal quotes ‘safety testing’ and states, “tens of thousands of children who’s mothers had used this drug were born with severe deformities. ” (Bantwal) Cook argues that if they had done more testings on animals, that the birth defect would have been detected. She understands that the scientists messed up because they forgot to test prenatal animals. She attacks the animal rights group with: “animal rights groups confuse an error resulting from an absence of testing with one resulting from conducting tests on animals. (Cook, 2006) Cook believes that they don’t understand what they are arguing. Their example of the Thalidomide is really suggesting to do more animal testing so then it will be more accurate and precise: “a few more animals, and countless human lives would have been saved. ” (Cook, 2006) Overall, animals are continued being used as experiments for all humans’ health. Whether for or against animal testing, everybody has to be appreciative and acknowledge the benefits scientists and animals have brought. It’s like a competition between animals and humans: which race should be protected more?

Both Kristina Cook and Natasha Bantwal share their perspectives and only agree upon one thing: animal testing has helped scientists and the medical field. Now, which is more important to you: animal rights or human health? Work Cited: Bantwal, Natasha. “Arguments Against Animal Testing. ” Buzzle Web Portal: Intelligent Life on the Web. Web. 06 Mar. 2011. ;http://www. buzzle. com/articles/argument-against-animal-testing. html;. Cook, Kristina. “Spiked-science | Article | Pro-Test: Supporting Animal Testing. ” Spiked: Humanity Is Underrated. 23 Feb. 2006. Web. 06 Mar. 2011. ;http://www. spiked-online. om/articles/0000000CAF94. htm;. Ernst, Stephanie. “Animal Use and Abuse Statistics: The Shocking Numbers. ” Change. org News. 5 Oct. 2008. Web. 05 Mar. 2011. ;http://news. change. org/stories/animal-use-and-abuse-statistics-the-shocking-numbers;. “11 Facts about Animal Testing | Do Something. ” Volunteer | Do Something. ASPCA. Web. 05 Mar. 2011. ;http://www. dosomething. org/tipsandtools/11-facts-about-animal-testing;. Long, Tony. “Oct. 1, 1957: Thalidomide Cures Morning Sickness, But … ” Wired. com. 01 Oct. 2008. Web. 06 Mar. 2011. ;http://www. wired. com/science/discoveries/news/2008/09/dayintech_1001;.

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