animal testing should not be banned

Topics: Animal rights, Animal testing, Animal Liberation Front Pages: 5 (1648 words) Published: October 11, 2014
For many years, animals have been used in research both in the scientific and medical fields. In order to introduce new drugs into the market, they have to be tested first on animals in order to ascertain whether they are effective or not. Animal experimentation in this context defines the use of non-humans, mostly animals, to test new drugs and consumer goods such as cosmetics, pesticides, herbicides, food additives, among others (Taylor 120). Pharmaceutical companies and research institutions have been active in animal experiments because these institutions are charged with coming up with new drugs. What has however been controversial with animal experiments is whether this procedure should be banned or not based on its ethical implications. Animal rights activists have been at the forefront in advocating for a ban on animal experiments based on the ethical issues associated with it. For those supporting the use of animals in experiments, the arguments that have been made include possibilities of medical and scientific breakthroughs, safety for humans, and accuracy of results. When the benefits of animal experimentation are weighed against the drawbacks, it is evident that the procedure is beneficial. Accordingly, animal experimentation should not be banned. First, animal experiments should not be banned based on the fact that it has been beneficial to humans and animals. With the recent technological advancement, substantive accomplishment has been made in the field of human medicine and science. In this regard, the use of animal testing cannot be underestimated. Taylor (132) maintains that animal experimentation has helped in unearthing new drugs that have helped to ease the suffering of humans from disease that was once witnessed in the past. Blakemore support Taylors point by indicating that vaccines for polio and cervical cancer, insulin, antibiotics, heart-bypass surgery, among others were all advances that were achieved through animal testing. For a patient to receive therapy or treatment, it has to be known that this originated from an arduous medical research involving animals. For instance, Blakemore uses an example of how people can easily forget the importance of animals in medical research. This is based on the fact that powerful drugs such as Avastin used to treat bowel, breast, and lung cancer were developed after research was conducted on mice. John Stein, the professor of Oxford Functional Neurosurgery Group also supports animal experiments because it helps to improve medicines and treatments (Campbell). Some countries like the UK have even realized the benefits of animal testing in advancing the medical field (University of Bradford). However, UK has banned the use of animal testing for consumer goods such as for cosmetics production (University of Bradford). Critics have however been instrumental in indicating a number of ethical implications linked with animal testing. As the critics point out, animal testing is a procedure that does not take into consideration the rights of animals. As a matter of fact, animals are just like humans who require to be treated the way humans are treated. While supporting animal research, Taylor (120) however cites some commentators who argue that the experiment that involved testing cosmetics and other hazardous products on rabbits in order to know how long the rabbits would die was unethical. This experiment fundamentally was meant to test the level of toxicity of certain substances. As Taylor (128) echoes the sentiments of critics, this is an inhumane way of treating animals because “… the suffering of any being ought to count equally with the like suffering of any other being.” These among other critical arguments have formed the basis of the opposing side of animal testing. It may be justified to talk in terms of animal ethics when there is justification that animals have actually been mistreated. Considering that few cases have been reported regarding inhumane...
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