DAY 1 Ola from the Second World Conference on Bioethics and Animal Rights. First, I would like to say that I am very thankful that Pace Law School and the Center for Environmental Legal Studies provided me with the opportunity to attend this prestigious and world-renowned conference and for all of the conference organizers’ hard work and hospitality. As the presentations I have attended thus far have been informative and thought-provoking for me, I will do my best to share my experience with you.
Upon arrival, a symphony was playing. After introductions and honorariums, Professor David Cassuto of Pace Law School and Director of the Brazil-American Institute for Law and Environment (BAILE) spoke about current trends in environmental law and the animal world. He discussed the intersection of animal and environmental law and how they often clash, despite the many common grounds upon which they merge. He went on to discuss the legal framework for protecting animals, distinguishing between animal welfarists and animal rights activists, stating that animal welfarists wish for stronger laws, while animal rights activists believe that humans should not use animals at all. He also pointed out that in the United States legal system, animals are property and the laws concerning animals regulate relationships between humans about animals. He made an interesting comparison between the appropriateness of humans making laws on behalf of nonhuman animals and politicians enacting laws on our behalf without truly knowing us, what we desire, or how we would like to be protected. This comparison comes as an interesting response to doubts about human ability and right to make laws about non-human animals when they do not completely understand what animals want or need.
Professor Cassuto also discussed whether animals can be considered “persons” under the law and how this would change the way we protect them. This served as a great opening to the Conference, as many of the presentations that followed addressed these questions and dealt with similar issues. (more…)
Filed under: animal advocacy, animal ethics, animal experimentation, animal law, animal law education, animal scholarship, Brazil-American Institute for Law & Environment, environmental ethics, environmental law | Tagged: activism, animal advocacy, animal ethics, animal experimentation, animal law, animal law education, animal rights, animal rights activists, animal scholarship, animal welfarists, BAILE, bioethics, Brazil-American Institute for Law and Environment (BAILE), Brazil-American Institute of Law & Environment, Carlos Maria Romeo Casabona, climate change, dairy production, David Cassuto, David Favre, Deusto University Bilbao, environmental advocacy, environmental ethics, environmental law, factory farms, farmed animals, global warming, greenhouse gas emissions, intersection of animal and environmental law, Kathy Hessler, Lewis and Clark Law School, livestock, meat, Michigan State University, Nonhuman Rights Project, Pace Law School, Pace Law School and the Center for Environmental Legal Studies, Pamela Frasch, Peter Singer, Princeton University, respectful use, Second World Conference on Bioethics and Animal Rights, Steven Wise, vivisection, wildlife | 1 Comment »