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Animal Rights & Human Morality Paperback – September 30, 2006
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"Animal Rights and Human Morality is as relevant and important today as it was when first published. And just as necessary, for despite all we know about the minds and especially the feelings of animals, routine abuse of animals continues. Peppered with countless stories of his encounters with tough stockmen and steely laboratory workers, Rollin’s voice is an important one in the struggle for animal rights. Rollins brings a philosopher’s voice of reason to the often heated debate about cruelty to animals."
Jane Goodall, Ph.D., DBE
Founder – the Jane Goodall Institute, and UN Messenger of Peace
About the Author
Bernard E. Rollin (Fort Collins, CO), University Distinguished Professor at Colorado State University, is also a professor of philosophy, professor of biomedical sciences, professor of animal sciences, and university bioethicist at the same institution. Rollins is the author of fourteen books and over three hundred articles and is the principal architect of 1985 federal legislation dealing with the welfare of experimental animals.
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As he makes clear, loathing for the inhumane may make us feel good, but it doesn't go far in changing things. The book is dry going, as Rollin moves from John Rawls to Jeremy Bentham, with a substantial portion of the text devoted to specific failings of the Animal Welfare Act and a detailed examination of the principles of animal testing. Like a visit to the dentist or an afternoon with the vacuum, it's not necessarily much fun. You won't find a lot of heartwarming stories about sensitive elephants here -- not that those are bad things.
What you will find is a legislative agenda, an outline for community action, and an arsenal of reasoned arguments to counter the exploiters of animals. It would be nice to think that we can turn the food industry technicians and scientific researchers with a question as simple as, "Would you do it to your dog?" For many of them, that may be enough. It's the rest for whom Rollin offers us strategies. Social ethics are murky, in that we may "know" what's right, but we can't explain what we know or how to those that don't get it. Read Rollin, and the explanations will be clear.
But I own just about everything written about animal rights so I picked it up to add to my library.
It has turned out to be one of my favorite books because it's beautifully written with excellent logic.
If you have ever had difficulty explaining your position on an animal rights issue, to a non-animal person, read this book.
And then read it again.
A perfect blend of logic, ethics and moral behavior.