Over our history as an organization, we’ve read a lot of activist portrayals of health research and the people who undertake it. We’ve been called murders and torturers. We’ve had our heads super-imposed over bloody scenes and yes (unsurprisingly) we’ve even been compared to Nazis. See Godwin’s Law.
However, if you are a long-time reader of this Web site, you’ve come to realize something. Activist portrayals of science research are often science fiction. For example: Activist groups frequently send mass mailings to supporters about “infant monkeys torn from their mothers’ wombs.” Real world translation: The babies were born via cesarean section, just like 1/3 of the U.S. population.
Activist groups also frequently use “creative” language to portray researchers and research centers as shadowy and secretive. When groups have “unearthed documents that illustrate abuse,” they actually requested and obtained public documents. Then, used their anti-research point-of-view to translate the records into wild exaggerations that bear little resemblance to the facts they were handed in the first place.
As a public service, and a perhaps a method for bridging the communication gap between activists and scientists, we would like to propose “The Activist to English Dictionary.”
Also, all you aspiring “Websters” out there, we need your help. Please help us fill out the dictionary by adding your own definitions in our comments section:
Alternatives = Equality between two more more tools that have superficial resemblance. Activist public usage: “There are plenty of alternatives to animal studies” Activist private usage: “Well…actually there are a small number of alternatives but we better not tell the public that animal research is still required…because that would hurt our fundraising efforts.”
Animals are starved = Controlled access to food or water for animals.
Animals are poisoned = Animals are given medications prior to FDA approval to ensure they are safe for human consumption and to make sure we give people and other animals the right dose once it is made available.
Animals are sliced open/mutilated/cut up/dissected = Animals undergo a common blood test or undergo surgery that makes use of the same sterile conditions and pain medications as used on humans.
Archaic = Time tested and proven Usage: Animal research is archaic/time tested and proven.
Cosmetic testing = cosmetic testing. This should not be confused with health research aimed at ending suffering or preventing human or animal death.
Killed = humanely euthanized.
Locked up/imprisoned = Animals that live in captivity.
Medical expert = A PeTA/PCRM-paid physician, normally with very limited exposure to research.
Monkeys are forcefully restrained = Monkeys are trained to sit in a chair and receive treats as positive reinforcement.
More and more companies are switching to non-animal tests = More and more companies are paying other companies to do their safety testing for them so they can say they don’t test on animals.
Painful = Painful…if the animals are not given painkillers…but they actually are.
“PETA/IDA/PVCRM urged xxx company/university”= PETA/IDA up Web-based email system and told supporters to hit a send button which resulted in 10,000 identical emails being sent to one person often not directly involved in the thing being protested.”
Research kills humans = Research saves lives.
Secret documents = Public records asked for and received.
Sexism and or racism = Sexism and or racism Usage: “Sexism and or racism is unacceptable for anyone else but completely acceptable to our activist group because these offensive tactics are being employed in the name of animal rights!
We support good science = We support anything that does not involve the use of
animals in science even when proven animal research models have saved countless lives. Usage: “We support 21st century science, such as the use of computer modeling, tissue samples, quantum- chaotic technologies, holographic nano-technology, and eco-bot halo-based nintendography.”
Vivisection = The use of the same methods used in human surgery in animals with the goal of advancing medical science and the well-being of humans and animals alike.
Speaking of Research