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A MOVING APPEAL - Letter of objection
Posted 1 September 2002
The writer of this objection to the Cambridge primate centre suffers from depression. Thus, her objection carries special authority, given that the proposed centre would explore such conditions.
The Planning Inspectorate
Room 3/24 Hawk Wing
Temple Quay House
2 The Square
26 August 2002
Ref: APP/WO530/A/02/109018 - proposed new primate laboratory in Cambridge
I am utterly appalled and in shock that Cambridge University, considered one of the principal seats of learning and civilisation, wishes to establish this barbaric new complex. It beggars belief and there is little I can say except to express my horror. This proposal was made, and is being promulgated, by people of supposedly high intelligence - "the cream of civilisation". I should not have to argue my case with such people. Surely if there is any quality that sets people apart from animals it is the ability to care for other living beings in a unique way - particularly those outside their own species.
The whole concept of vivisection is so absurd, i.e. animals are similar to us so we can learn about ourselves by experimenting on them but they are not similar to us so we can inflict physical and psychological pain on them to benefit ourselves. Their pain does not matter. Why? I ask why?? Surely this is simply a case of "might is right". The same as the reasoning of the slave traders (the suffering of blacks did not matter), of Hitler (Jews, the mentally deficient, Gypsies, etc. did not matter), of so-called "terrorists" (the suffering of the "infidel" population does not matter), etc.
I could argue legitimately and at length about how experiments on animals are not effective or accurate and that there are better, non-animal modules that should be used. But on this occasion I will not. Because that takes away from the simple fact that to torture animals to benefit humans is wrong. Would we argue that to torture blacks to benefit whites is wrong because blacks are different from whites or vice versa? No! We would simply say it was wrong - in fact criminal.
I am surprised Cambridge University does not consider establishing an experimental complex where coma victims, the severely brain-damaged (people in a so-called vegetative state), etc. could be experimented on to benefit the brainy, the competent and the "achievers"! The reason why they will not, I suspect, is because these human beings have relatives to fight for them - animals have no one.
I can assure Cambridge University that some people with depression, Alzheimer's, etc. do not wish to be "cured" at the expense of monkeys. As the saying goes "Heal thyself, Oh Physician". And I would rather be considered dim or crazy than have the brilliant but cruel brains of some of the world's leading intellectuals, such as those at Cambridge.
Save the name of civilisation - and Great Britain in particular. Do not grant permission for a primate laboratory to be erected.
Thank you for your attention.
Tara Corcoran (Miss)