By Daniel H. King, Sr.
One is seldom surprised anymore at the ludicrous assertions of the godless of our age. I suppose that the “animal rights” coalition is the most brazen and offensive in their pronouncements, of-ten contending that animals ought to be given consideration over the health and safety of human beings. They argue that animals are our evolutionary cousins and that the welfare of a dog or cat ought to be deemed as equal to that of a human child. Therefore, animals should not be eaten by human beings as food, nor should they be used for laboratory testing of drugs or other medical devices and products which will later be used to cure human diseases and save human lives. As a matter of fact, many of us today are alive because scientists have been able to test drugs and procedures on animals like rats and mice before they came to market. But animal testing is particularly distressing for many “animal rights” activists, since monkeys and chimpanzees are also frequently utilized in testing procedures. And, according to the theory of evolution, primates are man’s nearest evolutionary kin.
Now, there is a move afoot to give to certain animals, under the law, the same protections which are afforded to human children. In case you think I have imagined all this, let me quote from The Humanist (July/August 1994), from the pen of Edd Doerr, under the heading “Church and State: Ape and Essence”:
Nearly twenty years ago in this column . . . I concluded that, if chimps can function as humans even if only on the level of human children we would need to include them in our legal and social definitions of “persons” and accord them some-thing like the legal rights that we enjoy … Two decades later, we know a great deal more about our nearest evolutionary cousins, the great apes … Genetically we and the great apes are quite closely related …The bottom line is that the great apes are so much like us that there is no logical reason not to treat them as “persons” at least to the same degree as children and mentally impaired human adults …Great apes function men-tally at the level of children or impaired adults and thus should be as much a part of our moral community as our children …Large brained cetaceans (whales, dolphins) certainly appear to have high intelligence, but they are sufficiently different from primates that it may be some time before we know enough to ascribe personhood to them (43-44).
Doerr makes special reference to a recent work written by 34 scientists, The Great Ape Project: Equality Beyond Humanity (St. Martin’s Press, 1994), edited by P. Cavalieri and P. Singer, which demands “the extension of the community of equals to include all great apes: human beings, chimpanzees, gorillas, and orangutans.” The purpose of the book is to protect the lives and liberties of these species and prohibit their torture and mistreatment. “Medical experiments without the consent of both humans and apes would be banned” writes Doerr approvingly. I wonder how you would get permission from a monkey?
This leads us to make a few comments:
1. All of Nature Is Based Upon The Principle of Kill or Be Killed, Eat or Be Eaten. Scientists frequently speak of the “food chain,” i.e., the natural order of plants and animals which feed upon one another. At the top of the food chain are the predators: the meat-eating carnivores. On the land there are such swift and powerful animals as the lion, tiger, cheetah, cougar, etc. They feed on the smaller, slower, and less powerful animals. Tigers, in particular, have been known not only as carnivorous, but even as man-eaters when they live in close proximity with humans. The shark is the great terror of the deep, eating smaller fish and even humans if they venture into his domain when he is hungry and motivated to attack.
The point is, that man is at the top of the food chain, even by their own admission and reasoning. Why is he the only carnivorous predator in nature who is not permitted to use lesser animals for food? By what twist of logic must he permit his fellow humans and his children to suffer in order to save lesser animals from harm? If man is merely an animal, for what reason should he exempt himself from the whole natural order and place himself in a servile and obsequious position with respect to the rest? If he possesses the highest intelligence, why would he wish to place himself at the mercy of bacteria and virus, sickness and disease? Even common sense militates against their approach. This is the epitome of elitist intellectual stupidity!
2. The Theory Of Evolution Is The Culprit In All This Nonsense. In the background of much of this nonsensical environmentalism and “animal rights” activism lies the assumption that man is merely the product of millions of years of naturalistic evolutionary development. Since man is the highest achievement of that process, he is the only god there is. So, in the place of the theism of the past, there is only human-ism. And this is the kind of thinking that humanism produces! As the Bible says of the intellectual elite of another but similar age, “professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image make like to corruptible man . . .” (Rom. 1:22-23).
3. What Does The Bible Say? For those of us who believe the Bible to be the Word of God, there is a very different perspective. The Bible says that man is the unique creation of Al-mighty God: “And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul” (Gen. 2:7). He is not the chance amalgamation of atoms and molecules that evolutionary theory says he is. A human being is unique also in that man was made in the di-vine image: “And God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them” (Genesis 1:27). Moreover, the entire creation is here for man’s use, including all the various types of animals: “Thou madest him a little lower than the angels; Thou crownedst him with glory and honor, And didst set him over the works of thy hands. Thou hast put all things in subjection under his feet…” (Hebrews 2:7, 8; cf. Gen. 1:26, 28).
4. Watch Out For Their Hidden Agenda! Man is not “a monkey’s uncle” nor is he his “nearest evolutionary cousin.”
Such talk is not calculated to exalt the lower animals to a higher station. In reality, it’s purpose is to bring man down to the level of the “creatures without reason” (2 Pet. 2:12). Doerr’s article, interestingly enough, makes an argument for “freedom of choice,” which, as most of you know, is the vernacular way of describing the “right” to murder human children in the womb. He is no doubt also a proponent of euthanasia, the kill ing of those whose “quality of life” does not meet his criteria of happiness. These go hand in hand with those who follow this line of thinking. Adolf Hitler, Joseph Stalin, Karl Marx and Nikolay Lenin used such twisted reason to slaughter millions of human beings. Humanistic thinking is not compassionate at its essence, but insidious and dangerous. This is especially so when it controls government. Don’t buy it!
Guardian of Truth XXXIX: No. 22, p. 12-13
November 16, 1995