Last week, we told you about actions that you can take to help animals in laboratories. But that was just the tip of the cruelty-free iceberg. Here are a few more great ways that PETA Prime readers can work to keep animals out of laboratories:
A Few Good Men—and Lots of Suffering Animals
Not all vivisection happens behind laboratory doors, and not all military casualties are human. For decades, the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) has crudely trained medics and soldiers to treat traumatic injuries by deliberately injuring animals with knives, guns, and bombs, among other tools.
Each year, the DOD and its contractors conduct cruel trauma training exercises in which more than 10,000 helpless animals are critically injured and used as supposed “stand-ins” for wounded soldiers. In one recent case, a whistleblower provided PETA with shocking undercover video of a military training drill in which instructors repeatedly crack and cut off the limbs off live goats with tree trimmers, stab the animals with scalpels in order to cause internal injuries, and cut into their abdomens and crudely pull out their organs. In other drills, live pigs are shot, stabbed, and set on fire.
This violence persists even though modern, high-tech simulators that breathe, bleed, cry, talk, and respond to medications are available and simulate traumatic human injuries in ways that cutting apart, blowing up, shooting, and killing animals never could. These 21st century techniques are already used at some military facilities, and military regulations actually require that non-animal methods be used whenever available.
What to do? Join PETA, Bob Barker and others in urging the U.S. Secretary of Defense and other military officials to end the use of animals in trauma training exercises immediately. All hands on deck!
A Death-Defying Act
Pop quiz: How many countries in the industrialized world still allow experimentation on chimpanzees? Give up? There’s just one—the United States—and it’s time for us to give that up.
Chimpanzees are our nearest genetic relatives. They’re extremely social and intelligent, with rich mental and emotional lives. But hundreds of these extraordinary beings are held captive in U.S. laboratories, where the experience of enduring decades of invasive procedures—and of fear, loneliness, and pain—leaves lasting emotional scars and many of the chimpanzees resort to self-mutilation or other psychological disorders.
Chimpanzees are often intentionally infected with diseases such as HIV and hepatitis—even though scientists agree that they are unreliable models for researching human illnesses. A landmark National Academy of Sciences report examining the scientific validity of experiments on chimpanzee even concluded that “most current biomedical research use of chimpanzees is not necessary.”
As with military training drills, real change for chimpanzees will require intense pressure from the public as well as federal intervention. Fortunately, such legislation is making the rounds on Capitol Hill right now. The Great Ape Protection and Cost Savings Act (H.R. 1513/S. 810) would permanently end the use of chimpanzees—and all other great apes—in invasive experiments and retire more than 600 federally owned chimpanzees to sanctuaries. Please do your part by asking your senators and representative to cosponsor and support this lifesaving bill.
You’ve Got All the Answers, Don’t You?
If you’re not the shy type, there are all kinds of ways to make a difference—from telling a fellow shopper that a brand tests on animals to organizing a protest outside a laboratory facility. One of the best ways that you can be prepared to answer questions about why you oppose animal testing is to read up! Here are some great places to start:
Animals in laboratories need our help—together, we can stop animal experimentation for good!