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Singer on Animal Rights - Essay Example

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Peter Singer’s views from: “All Animals Are Equal” Submitted to: Submitted By: Submitted On: 6 June, 2011. Animals are an essential part of our ecosystem. They should possess rights just as human beings do because they have emotional and physical feelings like humans…
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Singer on Animal Rights
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Download file to see previous pages Several human activists have advocated the making and imposition of animal rights. This struggle on behalf of their loyal friends is not new and lasts over the last numerous decades. One of the most prominent human rights activists is Peter Singer who has an Australian origin. A renowned Philosopher and the professor of Bioethics at Princeton University, the sixty four (64) year old humanist has voiced his thoughts in favor of human rights for about four decades now. Peter Singer’s work “All Animals are Equal”, that came into print in the later part of the 1980s, highlights his decades old philosophy of safeguarding animal rights by voicing and maintaining the stance of respect of animals. This text is an attempt to voice Singer’s thoughts that he has advocated in the said work. The main theme of this article of Peter Singer is that animals, may they be ‘humans’ or ‘non humans’ deserve respect. He is quoted in this article as: “I am urging that we extend to other species the basic principle of equality that most of us recognize should be extended to all members of our own species.” Singer does not emphasize that animals should have rights like humans but emphasizes that their rights should be recognized. He does not mean to say that animals are just like humans or should be treated just like humans. All he wants to say is that the discriminating factor between them should not be that one is an animal and the other is a human. Regardless of the species of a living being, rights should be associated with every individual thus attaching importance to their interests. The author compares the ambitions of human beings to those of an animal. Man has each and every step of his life planned. Every minute that passes brings him closer to his next planned task and then moreover to the next one. Animals however do not follow any such scheduled activity. Singer emphasizes that this fantasizing of humans does not give them any edge over animals with respect to rights. “If a being suffers,” he says, “there can be no moral justification for refusing to take that suffering into consideration.” The famous activist proposes a situation where a building might accidentally be on fire. A human and a dog would be distressfully caught into the fire in exactly the same manner. They’re both hurt to the same extent and have become immobile. In such a situation, the author emphasizes that, both the human being and the animal have equal rights of being picked up as the first option of rescue. He shuns the thought that since a man has his whole planned life to live he should be the first choice of being picked up by rescue personnel. Singer emphasizes that there potentially is no difference in the suffering of the distressing animal and the human being. ‘The Human Pain’ he says has the same intensity as the animal’s pain. He strictly shuns that merely the thought that human suffering is more than animal suffering should not make the picking up of the human being as the first choice. On the contrary, if the person suffering may be your loved one then you may ask the rescue team to pick him up first, but not otherwise. Singer states that of all the things that may exist, human beings have only and only a single edge over other species and that is the fact that they belong to the “Human Species” or “Homo Sapiens”. Singer emphasizes by saying, “Like it or not, we must face the fact that humans come in different shapes and sizes; they ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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