[Paleopsych] animals and pain

K.E. guavaberry at earthlink.net
Wed Mar 9 03:02:37 UTC 2005

Yes Michael,

thank you


At 07:08 PM 3/7/2005, you wrote:

> >>Now, at a forthcoming conference on sentience in
>domesticated animals, an expert is to argue that what
>really matters is not IQ but emotions, and that fish
>can suffer as much as birds and many mammals.<<
>--I think for the purposes of empathy, that's true. If
>we go by IQ, then low-IQ humans are somehow less
>sentient or less human. If we go by the ability to
>suffer, then we have to include animals. We may
>eventually be forced to confront our somewhat
>compartmentalized attitudes toward animals. Most
>people have no problem eating a cow, but would feel
>more than a slight twinge of guilt eating a dolphin or
>chimpanzee. It's similar to our attitudes toward
>drugs, which are based on unthinking perceptions of
>risk and social acceptability, rather than solid
>information. In the case of animals and pain, we have
>to ask "why are we asking the question?" Why does it
>matter to us if animals, or other people, for that
>matter, feel pain? The answer might give us some clues
>as to where to draw the line.

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