bioethics, distinguishing terms

Leonard Paplauskas lpaplaus at neuron.uchc.edu
Tue Feb 8 13:35:30 EST 1994


In article <2im8kq$pab at ysics.physics.sunysb.edu>, mhollowa at epo.som.sunysb.edu writes:
>In article <1994Feb1.161456.10192 at iitmax.iit.edu> garfinkl at iitmax.iit.edu (Mark D. Garfinkel) writes:
>>mhollowa at epo.som.sunysb.edu (Michael Holloway) writes:
>>
>>>In article <brownbrd.759900648 at pv0a17.vincent.iastate.edu>
>>>brownbrd at iastate.edu (Grizzly Adams) writes:
>>>>The training group I am part of as a graduate student recently met and
>>>>discussed a small portion of bioethics - specifically that of "animal rights".
>>>
>>>That's disappointing, unless the discussion centered around educating the
>>>participants about the danger presented by "animal rights" terrorists.
>> [...]
>>>The only thing that a researcher needs to be taught about it is how to  best
>>>protect yourself from terrorists.
>>
>>        *For the most part I agree. Animal rights activism is, I think,
>>just one facet of a Luddite anti-human point-of-view that is extremely
>>shortsighted & dangerous, for a whole bunch of reasons. However, isn't
>>it a valid point that healthy animals will be better laboratory research
>>subjects, 
>
>Ah, another example of a poor soul suckered into equating "animal rights" 
>with animal welfare (see other thread).  For whatever reason, you fail to 
>distinguish between a bizarre pop culture "philosophy" generated in the 
>`70's and something as obvious and necessary as humane treatment and 
>proper care of lab animals.  Humane treatment didn't spring into 
>existance after the creation of "animal rights" you know.  The term 
>"animal rights" refers to something quite different from your stated 
>concerns and is something that has caused zealots to start attacking 
>researchers.  
>
>Your confusion is understandable.  Its exactly the reaction that their 
>well funded organizations strive for.  Researchers have got to start 
>educating themselves about this so that the public at large (the poor 
>souls contributing to PETA yet hoping that biomedical research will find 
>a cure for something-or-other) can start to properly evaluate the 
>propaganda.  Referring to humane treatment as "animal rights" is a very 
>large mistake.
>
Universities and biomedically oriented industries (pharmaceutical and 
biotech) have recently begun to organize campaigns to counter the public's 
general state of ignorance about what biomedical research is, how it is 
conducted, and why humane treatment of subjects (animal "and" human) is 
critical.  In Connecticut, we formed CURE, Connecticut United for Research 
Excellence, to accomplish this public education initiative.  As part of 
CURE's efforts, we have published BioRAP, a publiication dircted at G6-8 
children.  BioRap taes various disease issues, e.g., rabies, AIDS, Lyme 
Disease, and not only ecates the kids about the disease, but also o the 
role biomedical reesearch has played in generating therapies.  By the use 
of cartoons and crossword puzzles, BioRAP also teaches about careers in 
research, biosafety issues in place in labs, and a host of other topics so 
critical to understanding what research is.  You can learn more about 
BioRap from CURE, P.O. Box 5048, Wallingford, CT 06492-7548.  You can learn 
more about what yState's equivalent of CURE is doing by contacting the 
research office at your university.

This is indeed a complicated issue, and it gets to the heart of what 
research is, and why we do it!  Happy reading!>



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