The Cruel Science - Animal Research from Aristotle to the 21st Century
the book discusses the seldom addressed story backed by credible evidence of the very possible link of animal research to the creation of AIDS and many forms of cancer. In addition, the book focuses on the strategy philosopher/theorists who support animal research are employing to continue animal research far into the future at the public’s expense. It also studies the connection of animal research with societal violence.
One of the surprising conclusions which emerges from this study is that it is a mistake to write off Christianity generally as a faith hopelessly locked into a mindset unwilling to consider animal rights issues including vivisection. The Christian bias against animals began at least as far back as the Middle Ages, but, as the author convincingly shows, this happened only because the church fathers followed the hierarchical values set by Aristotle. Contrary to the verdict Peter Singer erroneously rendered in Animal Liberation--that the "New Testament is completely lacking in any injunction against cruelty to animals, or any recommendation to consider their interests"--a close study of the scripture and the words of Jesus reveals that this is not the case. The message of compassion and love Jesus brought to the earth extends equally to animals.
Moreover, as the author argues elsewhere, the Old Testament commandment Thou Shalt Not Kill (which excluded animals) clearly applies to animals when understood correctly in the context of the New Testament. (This subject is discussed in the author's book Is It Christian to Hunt?) Grounds do exist for the possibility of Christians changing their world outlook on animals.
The chapter titled “The British Booklet: Dissecting the Big Lie Piece by Piece” shows how animal researchers and their supporters have exaggerated, misrepresented, and lied about the accomplishments and supposed benefits of animal research.
In the chapter titled “Why Animal Research is a Pseudo Science,” the book poses the questions of whether animal research can be reliably called a legitimate science if the scientists conducting animal research refuse to meet the full disclosure requirements of the scientific method and refuse to subject the theories which serve as a foundation for animal research to scientific testing.
The Cruel Science also takes up the subject of how modern day philosopher/theorists such as animal philosopher/theorist Peter Carruthers, a Professor of Philosophy at the University of Maryland, are attempting to influence the decision-makers who fund animal research and as well public opinion by developing a highly sophisticated sounding but fallacious theory of animal mentality. These researchers hope to create a foundation for extending research far into the future. Carruthers labors to make the same case Aristotle made 2300 years ago, that animals are nonratrional beings, which is rather amazing considering the lack of evidence in support of such claims and considering all the work that has been done by animal cognition scientists which shows that animals are indeed conscious beings. The Cruel Science makes the case that animal researchers and their supporters must be forced to provide evidence for their unscientific claims.
A major theme in The Cruel Science is that the cruel treatment and abuse of nonhuman animals by humans is a major cause of some of the largest problems human beings face today. The book makes the case that our universities, the animal research industry, and animal researchers have abdicated their moral responsibility by participating in building a vast system of animal research that rewards cruelty with money. They have turned a deaf ear to the reality that the elimination of cruelty to animals is necessary for the world to solve the ecological problems destroying the earth’s resources and the atmosphere upon which life depends, that animal cruelty underlies the destruction of the personal health of many human beings, and that animal cruelty is responsible for destroying the good will and cooperation necessary for humans to survive together. Science and our universities should be working for the betterment of humans and nonhumans, not contributing to their destruction. Animal research is a cruel science. It must be eliminated if human beings are to make any real progress in creating the kind of productive and peaceful world to which all people of good will aspire.