By Rod Preece
Because the such a lot populous province in Canada, Ontario is a microcosm of the animal welfare concerns which beset Western civilization. The authors of this ebook, chairman and vice-chairman, respectively, of the Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, locate themselves continually being made conscious of the atrocities dedicated within the Society’s jurisdiction. they've been, in flip, wondered, exasperated and horrified at humanity’s cruelty to our fellow sentient beings. the problems mentioned during this booklet are the main contentious in animal welfare disputes — animal experimentation, fur-farming and trapping, using animals for human leisure and the stipulations below which animals are raised for human intake. they're complicated concerns and will be thought of particularly and heavily. The authors, status squarely at the aspect of the animals, recommend “community” and “belonging” as options by which to appreciate our relations to different species. They flooring their rules in Wordsworth’s “primal sympathy” and Jung’s “unconscious id” with the animal realm. The philosophy built during this publication embraces logic and compromise because the foremost paths to the aim of animal welfare. It calls for admire and attention for different species whereas acknowledging our basic duties to our fellow people.
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4 While it is certainly true, as the animal liberationists tell us, that Aristotle did not share the respect for animals we find in Pythagoras or the members of his school, nonetheless it is easy to misrepresent Aristotle's view. We are told that Aristotle thought slavery both right and expedient (the animal liberationists don't bother to mention that Pythagoras thought so too) and that Aristotle's attitude to slavery is indicative of his attitude to animals. What we are not told is that Aristotle's attitude to slavery was a quite progressive one for the Greece of his time.
In his History of England the nineteenth-century Whig historian Lord Macaulay tells us that the seventeenth-century "Puritan hated bearbaiting, not because it gave pain to the bear but because it gave pleasure to the spectators. "14 In fact it was not uncommon for Puritans to kill the bears to prevent the baiting! In the few years when Puritans held sway in mid-seventeenth-century England they determined to punish adultery with death, outlawed wrestling matches, Maypoles, 'theatrical diversions' and looked ill on horse-racing, bowls and puppet shows.
There is no common ground, no consensus, no meeting point from which a meaningful debate can begin and from which practical and beneficial compromises can be reached. Let us immediately acknowledge where we stand. We stand squarely on the side of the animals. But we do not believe that compromise is an evasion of principle. It is instead the most effective means to implement principle. The animal liberationists, as well as their adversaries, paint only half a picture, give us only one side of the story.
Animal Welfare and Human Values by Rod Preece