PEER RESPONSES 4
Peer Reply 1 – David Velazquez
According to Regan (1985), to be an experiencing subject of life simply means that someone has lived and experienced life. To further explain, it means that the subject has lived through emotions, suffered physically or mentally, felt pain, been happy and sad, and essentially everything that comes along with those things. He argues though that animals also have the same experiences, they just arent able to express them through a type of human form of communication that we would understand (Regan, 1985). In other words, the animals cant tell the story like we can. I do agree that by simply living you have the inherent right to live. I think where the waters get muddy is when you have someone for instance, that is maybe considered brain dead because of an illness or injury. In those cases, they are arguably not living any more in terms of what Tom Regan has outlined here. That said, Tom Regan believes that animals have these same rights as we do in terms of the inherent right to live because they to experience the same physical, emotional, and mental things that we do as humans. Although I do agree with this to an extent, I also see the other side of it and believe that if we are taking an animals life for the purpose of eating it, then that would be the exception. This does bring up an interesting point though to tie in from last week, which would make this merely relative vs. absolute. This is because even if you dont believe in hunting for food to feed your family, the majority of society will still buy meat at the store. Another point is that people will also put their pets down when they get to a point where they are ill or old and suffering. I look forward to your responses!
The fragility and status of life is indeed complex. The demarcation between animals and humans has a lot of layers to it. You state a few of them. However, there are clearly others. For example, there are some jurisdictions where suicide due to a terminal medical condition et al is acceptable and actively permitted (e.g. Oregon) (Oregon, 2018). However, that decision is made by the patient himself/herself rather than someone else, unless one counts people that are brain dead, under power of attorney, on life support only and so forth. Thats just one difference. A related difference would be the fact that the complexity of human emotion is much more beyond what animals can fathom. For example, any human of sound mind knows what sarcasm is. However, an animal would not be able to comprehend that. If they see a negative emotion (which is the way sarcasm is often presented), the animal will only perceive the negative part of it and not its true meaning. Another example is breeding. Non-human animals do not have to pay child support, get a job that pays money to buy food and so forth. Their procreation and family habits are all based on nature, instinct and so forth. By contrast, humans are expected to control their inhibitions, have children only when that is the intent and when they are actually able to support the child(ren) in terms of presence and money. Even so, there are some emotions that are common to all animals, at least in most cases, Contentment, anger, fear and happiness are just a few of those. Dogs wagging their tail and cats purring are no less happy than humans who are enjoying their personal activities.
Oregon. (2018). Oregon Health Authority : Death with Dignity Act : Death with Dignity Act :
State of Oregon. Oregon.gov. Retrieved 10 February 2018, from http://www.oregon.gov
Peer Reply 2 – Albert Hollis
I believe experiencing subject of a life means that an individual (whether your human or animal) is able to be conscious, physically breathe and be alive. In which being able to be alive allows us to experience a life. I fully believe that if one is capable of experiencing life that all have equal inherent value. If one is put on earth to be alive and experience life all were placed here for a unique reason. Although the reasons may be different between species, everything has a purpose. With this purpose and gift of experiencing life I believe one also inherits a value. In which this value gives any species treatment of respect and freedom. No one species should be viewed as lacking value compared to another. Once created to experience life all should be viewed with inherited value and treated as such, respectfully and peacefully. As I said above, everything is created with purpose and although some purposes may be greater then others, it does not give one species the right to decide that the human species value is more important than a different species. All life should be valued equally. I think that a major issue in our society today is that humans are seen with inherited value and some animals (typically dogs and cats) are seen as valued pets but not all animals are seen with inherited value. Not all animals are given equal rights to life and freedom. Tom Regan also said The other animals humans eat, use in science, hunt, trap, and exploit in a variety of ways, have a life of their own that is of importance to them apart from their utility to us. They are not only in the world, they are aware of it. What happens to them matters to them. Each has a life that fares better or worse for the one whose life it is (Regan, Animal Rights). This quote made me want to ask the question to those who believe animals do not inherent value, although they experience subject of life and as Tom Regan says, they are aware of life why should they not be given rights to life and freedom?
I mostly agree with what you are trying to say. However, I think it would be wise to pull back a bit on some of your assertions and clarify a few terms. First of all, humans are themselves mammals and animals. Thus, the suggestion that humans and, for example, dogs are different in terms of the fact that we are both animals is technically wrongbut I think I know what you really mean. Indeed, humans are on their own plane when it comes to intelligence, capability, self-control and lifes path. The actions and behaviors of other animals such as dogs, cats and so forth (wild or not) are much more basic and rudimentary. Humans have jobs, marriages and so forth. Dogs, for example, are much more worried about eating, sleeping and other such thingsbasic life functions and not much more. Sure, there are human-esque emotions and experiences involved. However, those are going to be on a more basic level than humanswithout question. For example, there is the open question as to whether a dog remotely realizes what is really going on when they seem themselves in a mirror, just as one example. With that in mind, the argument that humans and dogs (or any other animal) are of equal worth is perhaps a little too beyond the pale. To use a simple example, even if its unrealistic, one could ask whether one would save a human or a dog from a fire if only one could be saved. The correct answer in the eyes of most people, as it should be, is the human. Even if its a terrible dilemma no matter what, the value of the humans life would be higherwithout question. Would you agree? I found a Guardian article, authored by Dave Bry, that makes a similar argument when it comes to gorillas (Bry, 2016). Of course, this does not give us license to abuse, kill and otherwise harm animals with no limits. However, to suggest that human life and the lives of other animals are equivalent in terms of value and worth iswellnot really trueat least in my opinion. A real-world dilemma to prove this (or not, perhaps) is the incident at the Cincinnati Zoo with Harambe. That gorilla was shot because the life of the boy was deemed to be more important.
Bry, D. (2016). I can\\\\\\\’t believe I have to say it: a human life is worth more than a gorilla\\\\\\\’s | Dave Bry. the
Guardian. Retrieved 10 February 2018, from https://www.theguardin.com/commentisfree
Peer Reply 3 – Thomas Sheehy
In my personal opinion, to be an \\\\\\\experiencing subject of life\\\\\\\” is to be walking
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