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Animal Testing Should Be Banned

By , Bellevue, WA
Creatures may be being tortured and killed for the shampoo you use, food you eat, the makeup you may wearing, the cleaner used in your home, or medication you may take. Millions of animals a year are subject to being imprisoned and having terrible procedures done. This includes trials such as vivisection--the act of cutting or experimenting with live animals or having harsh chemicals used on them that you would never dare to put anywhere near your hair or face. Many of animals used die from these sorts of practices. Yet, a Pew Research poll found that only 43 percent of adults surveyed oppose to the use of animals in scientific research. Although the fact of the matter is that animal testing not only is unethical and cruel, but also is dangerous and can avoided.

100 million animals are killed for research each year in the United States alone. So it is surprising how few laws there are to protect those animals. In fact, the only law that regulates animal testing is the Animal Welfare Act (AWA). Unfortunately, the law does not place any restrictions on the types of experiments scientists may enact. The rules of the law (enforced by the US Department of Agriculture) also don’t apply to mice and rats, which account for ninety percent of all animals experimented on.

Not only do the animals die in research, but also abused during the entire process. All kinds of animals, including mice, birds, rats, fish, frogs, dogs, monkeys, rabbits, guinea pigs, and hamsters are subject to cruel experimentation in the name of science. Creatures used in experimentation are deprived of everything that would seem natural to them. They are confined to empty cages for hours at a time and caused social isolation, and psychological trauma. The animals may be ordained to breathing in toxic fumes, have caustic substances injected into their eyes, or confined to devices that render the animals immobile for hours at a time. Even worse is that just before their deaths creatures may get their skin burned off or their spinal cords smashed.

Animal testing is not just dangerous to the animals tested on, but to humans as well. Pat Thomas of The Ecologist said “many of the drugs approved through animal experimentation have proven dangerous to humans. In order to make experimentation more accurate, scientists should rely on human cells and carefully conducted clinical trials with humans.” In the book Naked Empress: The Great Medical Fraud prominent researcher Hans Ruesch adds that approximately 15,000 new drugs are marketed every year, while some 12,000 are withdrawn. Animal testing may not be as accurate as it appears when it comes to the health of the American people. According to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) 1.5 million Americans were hospitalized in a single year due to pharmaceutical drugs given to "cure" them. 30 percent of those hospitalized suffered further harm from the therapy they were prescribed.

The reason that animal testing is causing so much harm to humans may be because of the unreliable results animal testing produces. Dr. Richard Klausner, a former director of the National Cancer Institute said "We have cured mice of cancer for decades, and it simply didn't work in humans." The journal of Annals of Internal Medicine disclosed that universities often exaggerate results from animal experiments conducted in their laboratories as well as "often promote research that has uncertain relevance to human health and do not provide key facts or acknowledge important limitations." Of the drugs tested on animals, ninety-two percent of them do not make it through Phase 1 of human clinical trials (the initial tests that find out the reaction, effectiveness, and side effects of doses of a potential drug).

Testing on animals is an issue that their obviously needs something to be done about. Luckily there are several steps that, if taken, can eradicate all the repercussions in general. By encouraging companies to use less harmful ingredients, and most importantly getting consumers to buy cruelty free products, we can reach the point where animal testing can be banned altogether.

Persuading companies to use less harsh chemicals in their products is a logical step toward ending animal testing. The only reason that humans would suffer more harshly by testing products first hand would be because of harsh chemicals used in most of the products in America. According to the Environmental Encyclopedia “Synthetic chemicals are widely used in industry, agriculture, and in the home; many resist complete enzymatic degradation.” The government could persuade companies to use more natural, and less harmful ingredients in their products by offering tax breaks for the companies who do. As a result of making more natural products, the environment would also be benefitted by having less toxins going throughout our society. More jobs could also be provided to individuals willing to undergo such trials once the industry maintains more credibility.

This kind of radical action cannot happen without the support of you—the consumers. In an article in America magazine “An online listing of companies that test on animals…is shockingly long, and the brand names are surprisingly familiar--including Clairol, L'Oreal, Pine-Sol, Scope, Old Spice and Woolite.” Just by buying products that haven’t used animal testing such as The Body Shop, Avon, and Mary Kay cosmetics, you are taking a stand against animal testing.

If enough people refuse to use products that have been tested on animals, then it is entirely possible to amass enough support to have the government ban animal testing altogether.

America is a country of innovators. Countless new products are created each year with an innumerable amount of purposes. There were ways to avoid animal testing in the creation of all of those commodities. It is truly up to you, the consumer; to decide which ones you want to support the makings of by buying. That shampoo you use, food you eat, the makeup you may wearing, the cleaner used in your home, or medication you may take, shouldn’t be responsible for any innocent creature’s harm.

Bibliography:
"Animal Experimentation." Current Issues: Macmillan Social Science Library. Detroit: Gale, 2010. Gale Opposing Viewpoints In Context. Web. 15 Jan. 2013.

Thomas, Pat. "Animal Experimentation Hampers Medical Research." Animal Experimentation. Ed. Cindy Mur. San Diego: Greenhaven Press, 2004. At Issue. Rpt. from "Animal Testing—Dangerous to Human Health." WDDTY, What Doctors Don't Tell You. 2008. Gale Opposing Viewpoints In Context. Web. 15 Jan. 2013.

"Animal Research." Bioethics for Students: How Do We Know What’s Right?. Ed. Steven G. Post. Vol. 1. New York: Macmillan Reference USA, 1999. Gale Opposing Viewpoints In Context. Web. 15 Jan. 2013.

"Using Animals for Medical Testing Is Unethical and Unnecessary." The Ethics of Medical Testing. Ed. Tamara Thompson. Detroit: Greenhaven Press, 2012. At Issue. Rpt. from "Animal Experiments: Overview." People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals [PETA]. 2011. Gale Opposing Viewpoints In Context. Web. 17 Jan. 2013.


Hoff, David J. "Alternatives to Animal Dissection in the Classroom." Animal Rights. Ed. Shasta Gaughen. San Diego: Greenhaven Press, 2005. Contemporary Issues Companion. Rpt. from "Technology Aids Dissection Foe." Education Week 30 May 2001: 1. Gale Opposing Viewpoints In Context. Web. 18 Jan. 2013.

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"Protestors Against Animal Experimentation." Gale Opposing Viewpoints in Context. Detroit: Gale, 2010. Gale Opposing Viewpoints In Context. Web. 25 Jan. 2013.

"Frog Dissection." Gale Opposing Viewpoints in Context. Detroit: Gale, 2010. Gale Opposing Viewpoints In Context. Web. 25 Jan. 2013.

"Rabbit Prior to Experiment." Bioethics for Students: How Do We Know What’s Right?. Ed. Steven G. Post. New York: Macmillan Reference USA, 2010. Gale Opposing Viewpoints In Context. Web. 25 Jan. 2013.

"Infant Chimpanzee with Surrogate Mother Doll." Bioethics for Students: How Do We Know What’s Right?. Ed. Steven G. Post. New York: Macmillan Reference USA, 2010. Gale Opposing Viewpoints In Context. Web. 25 Jan. 2013.

"Companies That Still Test on Animals." Vegetarian and vegan info, vegan shoes, vegetarian shoes. N.p., 8 Sept. 2012. Web. 26 Jan. 2013.




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