The Instigator
mchahine
Pro (for)
Losing
14 Points
The Contender
Freeman
Con (against)
Winning
18 Points

It morally acceptable to experiment on animals for human purposes

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 5 votes the winner is...
Freeman
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 10/12/2009 Category: Science
Updated: 8 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 9,422 times Debate No: 9650
Debate Rounds (2)
Comments (10)
Votes (5)

 

mchahine

Pro

It is morally acceptable to experiment on non-domesticated animals for human purposes.

Contention I: Humans have "dominion" over animals.

IA: Humans have dominion over animals with a right to exploit them.
Genesis 1:28 - And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.

IB: Humans have always eaten/exploited animals; it has evolved into our DNA.
Humans may not need to eat meat in order to survive, yet doing so is part of our evolutionary heritage, reflected in the design of our teeth and the structure of our digestion. Eating meat helped make us what we are, in a social and biological sense. Under the pressure of the hunt, the human brain grew in size and complexity, and around the fire where the meat was cooked, human culture first flourished. Granting rights to animals may lift us up from the brutal world of predation, but it will entail the sacrifice of part of our identity our own animality.

Contention II: The results of animal experimentation are useful.

IIA: Animal testing has significantly improved human welfare
Past experience has shown what invaluable advances can be made in medicine by experimenting on animals, and that live animals are the most reliable subjects for testing medicines and other products for toxicity. In many countries (e.g. the US and the UK) all prescription drugs must be tested on animals before they are allowed onto the market. To ban animal experiments would be to paralyse modern medicine, to perpetuate human suffering, and to endanger human health by allowing products such as insecticides onto the market before testing them for toxicity.

IIB: Animals are good research subjects because they are similar to humans.
Human beings share over 99.4% of their genes with chimpanzees and about 99% with mice. It is instructive to consider that humans also share approximately 90% of their genes with cows. The physiologies of humans and these animals are very similar, with very similar organ and nerve systems. For this reason, it is useful and productive to study these animals as a means of advancing human sciences. The reactions of these creatures are a very good guide to possible reactions of human patients.

Contention III: We hunt and eat animals.

IIIA: Animals are exploited by humans without public outcry; why alienate animal experimentation?
are used as pets and for work in the agriculture and police industries. In all of these cases, they are being exploited for certain human ends, without too much concern for their "rights". It should not be of major concern, therefore, that animals are being exploited experiments for human ends. And, given that the exploitation is aimed at saving human lives, it is possible to argue that the degree of exploitation could be even more sever than in other cases of animal exploitation where the human-interests are less compelling.

IIIB: Animals are hunted and killed without public outcry; why alienate animal testing?
Animals are hunted and fished and are culled by animal controllers (raccoons, rats mice for the purpose of pest control). 10 times the amount of animals that are used in animal testing are killed for other less honorable reasons. Cats and dogs are euthanized every year for not apparent reason than bored owners. Other millions of animals are killed by automobiles (Cats, dogs, raccoons, foxes, deer).
Freeman

Con

Let me begin by thanking mchahine for instigating this debate. It's a pleasure to debate with you on such an interesting topic.

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Case Con- Rebuttals
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---> IA: Humans have dominion over animals with a right to exploit them.

I'm not concerned with theological arguments; if you want to make them then you will first have to establish their validity and veracity. Moreover, this entire argument is nothing more than a baseless appeal to authority. [1]

---> IB: Humans have always eaten/exploited animals; it has evolved into our DNA.

I don't need to do much more with this argument than point out that you have committed the naturalistic fallacy. [2] The fact that something is natural doesn't make it morally acceptable. Rape is commonplace in the natural world and it occurs in virtually every species of animal. [3] Perhaps you should make your next debate on why rape is morally justified.

---> IIA: Animal testing has significantly improved human welfare

Many of the experiments that are done on animals are completely unnecessary. And since alternatives have been created in place of these tests it makes them all the more unethical. [4] This entire argument assumes that the suffering of animals is morally inconsequential. I contend that this isn't the case. It is inhumane to conduct dangerous and possibly harmful experiments on sentient creatures that can feel pain.

---> IIB: Animals are good research subjects because they are similar to humans.

It is certainly true that humans and other animals share a great deal in common in terms of their genetic makeup. However, this doesn't make experimentation morally acceptable. (See contention to IIA)

---> IIIA: Animals are exploited by humans without public outcry; why alienate animal experimentation?

Firstly, you should speak for yourself. There is a public outcry against the exploitation of animals. [5] Secondly, you're begging the question. The premise of your argument assumes the proposition has already been proven. [6] In order for this argument to be valid you must first demonstrate that animal exploitation is morally acceptable and that it is morally equivalent to animal experimentation.

---> IIIB: Animals are hunted and killed without public outcry; why alienate animal testing?

This contention makes the same mistakes as IIIA. Moreover, the fact that something is done without public outcry does not make it morally acceptable. All sorts of evils are committed without massive public outcry. Once again you're begging the question. Moreover, the fact that cars hit animals doesn't make it morally acceptable to experiment on them. What kind of an argument is that?

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Case Con
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Contention 1: Animals can suffer

Animals are sentient, meaning they can feel pain and pleasure, and are therefore capable of suffering. [7] Since this is the case I will argue that it is morally unacceptable to harm sentient creatures that are capable of suffering. Unlike humans that can volunteer for these potentially harmful experiments animals are incapable of giving consent. And just because they aren't able to speak of their agony doesn't mean that they enjoy being abused and experimented upon or that it morally acceptable to experiment upon them. (Resolution negated)

Sources:

[1] http://en.wikipedia.org...
[2] http://en.wikipedia.org...
[3] http://en.wikipedia.org...
[4] http://www.associatedcontent.com...
[5] http://www.sonoma.edu...
[6] http://en.wikipedia.org...
[7] http://www.animal-rights-library.com...

All the best,
Freeman
Debate Round No. 1
mchahine

Pro

Contenton IV: Animals generally benefit from advances made in animal testing

IVA: Animal testing has improved understanding of animals and their welfare. What is often overlooked in this debate is the subject of veterinary medicine. It is in the interests of animals themselves that experiments be done on animals to test medicines and surgical procedures for using on animals themselves, not just on humans. Animal experimentation can be in the interests of animals as well as of humans. Heart worm medication was devised from research on animals and has to day helped in saving the lives of many dogs. Animal research has also provided better understanding of cat nutrition and the reasons behind as to why cats live longer and remain healthier are better understood.

Contention V: Animal testing actually helps in testing whether products are environmentally friendly.

VA: No organisation can commission animal testing without being sensitive to understandable concerns about the issue in society. However, all responsible businesses have to ensure that their products are safe for their employees, customers, the wider public and the environment. New product developments have delivered many benefits to society, but they must be demonstrated to be safe. In the case of oil and chemical products, the use of animals for testing is required where there is no other way of establishing their safety. Although new testing methods have significantly reduced the number of animals used, animals are still needed for some safety testing.

Contention VI: The use of animals in cosmetic testing is appropriate.

VIA: The Food and Drug Administration approves of animal testing in the case of cosmetics. The FD&C Act does not specifically require the use of animals in testing cosmetics for safety, nor does the Act subject cosmetics to FDA premarket approval. However, the agency has consistently advised cosmetic manufacturers to employ whatever testing is appropriate and effective for substantiating the safety of their products. It remains the responsibility of the manufacturer to substantiate the safety of both ingredients and finished cosmetic products prior to marketing.Animal testing by manufacturers seeking to market new products may be used to establish product safety.
Freeman

Con

Let me begin by thanking mchahine for this debate.

Since my opponent has decided to abandon his original three arguments allow my rebuttals for them to extend into this round. To briefly sum up my position I argued in the first round that harming animals by experimenting on them is unethical because they can suffer. And I also pointed out that there are viable alternatives to animal experimentation, which my opponent has decided to ignore. In case you didn't read my fourth source in round number one it established that Scientists are able to grow tissue in a lab, for the purpose of experimentation, that can achieve many of the same goals as experimentation upon a conscious animal. Now, lets take a look at the new arguments my opponent has put forth.

---> Contention IV: Animals generally benefit from advances made in animal testing

As I have stated in my first round animals are incapable of giving their consent to these tests. Even if animal testing could be shown to be beneficial to animals it is still unethical because it causes them to suffer. The same basic principle of fairness that we apply to humans must also apply to some extent to animals. If twenty sick people needed organ transplants it would be unethical to eviscerate one healthy person for the purpose of harvesting his organs. To this same degree it is also wrong to torture and experiment on some animals so that other animals can benefit from this.

---> Contention V: Animal testing actually helps in testing whether products are environmentally friendly.

This may be true, but these tests are still unnecessary. Furthermore, I have put forward a source in my first round, which shows that there are viable alternatives to animal testing that don't involve any animals suffering in any way. If you want to see it again you can follow this link. [1]

---> Contention VI: The use of animals in cosmetic testing is appropriate.

The use of animals in cosmetic testing is both unneeded and immoral. Contention VI makes the same mistakes as Contention V. Carry my arguments from that contention over to this one.

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Conclusion
========

Throughout the course of this debate my opponent has not been able to produce any arguments that aren't riddled with logical fallacies nor has he been able to rebut any of my original arguments. Consequentially, the outcome of this debate should be clear, vote con.

Best,
Freeman

Sources:

[1] http://www.associatedcontent.com...
Debate Round No. 2
10 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by tmhustler 8 years ago
tmhustler
definitely
Posted by tmhustler 8 years ago
tmhustler
Outside this debate I generally agree with pro but con deafeningly should win this debate.

RFD
c=con because of many fallacious arguments by pro
s&g = tie
A= con for very strong rebuttal
S= con many good sources
Posted by CaleBREEEum 8 years ago
CaleBREEEum
lol i love how he quotes a bible verse as a card
Posted by TheSkeptic 8 years ago
TheSkeptic
C: Tie
S&G: Tie
A: CON made crushing rebuttals that hit the nail on the head.
S: CON had several relevant sources.

But on a sidenote...Freeman, I'll take you up on your claim that animal testing is largely ineffective :P.
Posted by mchahine 8 years ago
mchahine
i know. im an amateur debater. this is my second debate. also, i couldn't rebut any of your points. this one is probably yours. it was fun though ! :)
Posted by Freeman 8 years ago
Freeman
It's generally a good idea to respond to the claims your opponent makes when he or she disects your arguement.
Posted by mchahine 8 years ago
mchahine
you have alot of strong points.
Posted by Freeman 8 years ago
Freeman
ughh.. 24 hours
Posted by studentathletechristian8 8 years ago
studentathletechristian8
Although I agree with Pro's stance, Pro has many faults in logic. I may take this for fun.
Posted by Metz 8 years ago
Metz
Three words.

Anthropocentricism
is
false
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Vote Placed by mchahine 8 years ago
mchahine
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wonderwoman
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