The history of using animals in research does not date back to the period of domestication but rather to the American Revolution. Though it had long been observed that some animals have internal structures that are similar to humans, usage of animals for research did not commence until later in the years. The current trend and practice has seen scientists center their experimentation on animals rather than on the human beings, despite the fact that the purpose of the experiment is meant to benefit the humans. Is this practice right and ethical?
The debate on the appropriateness of the practice of using animals for research has raged on for long and sometimes has turned emotional with the extreme end of the continuum advocating for or against their use. However, it should be categorically stated that this is unethical and unjustified for some reasons that this paper seeks to lay on the table.
Animals, though not equal to human beings, have feelings. They are capable of experiencing pain just like the humans. The notion held by many people including the researchers, that animals are just that and that they have no feelings is ill advised and prejudicial. It is simply held as such because human beings look down upon the animals, as they are not of the same level of intelligence as that of human beings.
Pain is evil in whatever form and it does in no way depend on who is on the receiving end (Singer P., 20) Experimentation on animals no doubt causes as much pain as it would cause to human beings, why then would it be more justifiable when meted out against animals than when it does against human? This is only because human beings have discovered that there would be more uproar when an experiment is conducted against a fellow human being more than when it is an animal that is on the receiving end. It is only prudent that when it comes to pain, the measures of suffering be applied equally across the board and the animals be accorded almost the same humane treatment despite the inherent disabilities. (Singer P, 9)