Essay on Animal Liberation Front

Submitted By nebryant
Words: 1394
Pages: 6

The Animal Liberation Front Singer’s Animal Liberation is based on the principle of utilitarianism for animals. Utilitarianism is a theory that states the proper course of action in a given situation should be the one that provides the greatest happiness overall, and is a form of consequentialism. He argues that the greatest happiness principle of utilitarianism should be extended to include the welfare of animals, not just humans. Singer states that humans have developed what he calls “speciesism,” in that we have a bias toward our own species in the same sense as racism and sexism. Singer also argues that animals should be included in utilitarian decisions on the basis that they can feel pain and suffering, not their intellect or ability to feel emotion. Animal Liberation also details current conditions and practices used on animals and calls for change to our current practices. In Animal Liberation Singer attempts to show a lack of justification in the way the human species treats and regards other species. Singer first points out evidence to speciesism in the general public’s perception that animals should not have rights just for the sole basis that they are animals. Singer on the other hand believes all beings that have the capacity for suffering should receive equal moral consideration. Singer declares, “ Pain is pain, and the importance of preventing unnecessary pain and suffering does not diminish because the being that suffers is not a member of our own species.” Singer argues that to deny animals this consideration is the same as denying woman rights based off her sex, or denying an African American rights solely off his or her race. Singer declares that if one cannot logically defend both sexism and racism, then it is impossible to justify speciesism. Singer sees no reason for the terrible treatment of animals to continue, while the blasphemies of sexism and racism were declared unjust decades ago. Singer claims that once one type of subordination is denounced, it should be easy to eradicate the rest. Singer believes that as women, different ethic groups, and religious groups gain equal rights it becomes increasingly difficult to defend the subordination that humans have put on other species. Singer relates sexism, racism, and speciesism by his explanation, “ Pain and suffering are in themselves bad and should be prevented or minimized irrespective of the race, sex or species of the being that suffers” Singer urges humans to not error in the ways of the past and start giving animals equal consideration and treatment. Another argument that is made why animals do not have equal moral consideration is that they lack a certain intellect humans deem sufficient. However, Singer believes that equal moral consideration should not be based off intellect or the ability to feel emotion, otherwise human characteristics, but on the ability of that species to feel pain or pleasure. In this point Singer does note that he does not believe that humans and animals should have equal rights. Singer states “There are obviously important differences between human and other animals, and these differences must give rise to some differences in the rights that each have ” Singer recognizes that most animals cannot accomplish and do the things that most grown humans can do. Humans, according to Singer, are also the only species that can make moral judgments and the have the capacity to reflect on the decisions made. Animals lack the ability to determine moral judgments and the capability to voice their thoughts. Therefore, Singer asserts that is must be humans that are the voice for equal treatment. Singer argues that most children and those unfortunate enough to be severely mentally retarded cannot do those tasks as well. If an individual sees a severely retarded child having cosmetic testing done on him or her that individual would claim that the child’s rights had been violated. Yet, those same individuals do not intervene