Who should be part of the animal research debate?

Note: The following is an invited post by Prof. Eric Sandgren,  Associate Professor of  Experimental Pathology in the School of Veterinary Medicine, at the University of Wisconsin at Madison.  The views expressed below are his own and do not necessarily represent that of his employer.   In late October, Professor Dario Ringach of UCLA visited … Continue reading Who should be part of the animal research debate?

What is your moral baseline?

I was recently invited  to offer a moral justification for the scientific use of animals in medical research at the University of Wisconsin.  After the talk we had over an hour of discussion where we saw everything from some thoughtful questions to nonsensical ramble. I presented an argument and I expected direct attacks on those arguments. … Continue reading What is your moral baseline?

A Public Conversation on Animal Ethics: The good, the bad, and the ugly

The UW-Madison recently hosted a conversation on the ethics of animal research between Rick Marolt, an opponent of animal research, and Robert Streiffer, a bioethicist at the university and member of the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC). Here are some of my thoughts on this interesting exchange. The good: Above all, it is good … Continue reading A Public Conversation on Animal Ethics: The good, the bad, and the ugly

PeTA tries to save face… and fails.

During the past month the University of Wisconsin responded to an aggressive media campaign by PeTA suggesting photos of animal studies they obtained are “proof” of violations of the Animal Welfare Act. PeTA filed complaints with the USDA and the National Institutes of Health demanding an investigation.  The university responded point-by-point to PeTA complaint stating … Continue reading PeTA tries to save face… and fails.

Conspiracy and greed

Opponents of the use of animals in medical research have difficulty reconciling their claim that the scientific work is invalid and fraudulent with the fact that it has wide support among the scientific community and professional organizations. A recent poll by the Pew Research Center found that 93% of scientists favor the use of animals … Continue reading Conspiracy and greed

Speaking of Morality

It was with the goal of sharing my personal views on the ethics of animal research that I recently published a manuscript on the topic. I also participated in two separate, public debates with animal rights philosophers Gary Francione and Nathan Nobis. Briefly, my position is based on the notion of graded moral status.  I believe we owe moral consideration … Continue reading Speaking of Morality

Opponents of animal research should refuse medical treatment

In a new post, animal rights activist Rick Bogle bemoans that his side is often challenged with a natural question: “Would you forgo medical treatment developed through animal research?” We can safely assume that the vast majority of those that oppose animal research do not have any qualms about vaccinating their children and companion animals or … Continue reading Opponents of animal research should refuse medical treatment