What is vivisection?
Vivisection is the use of live animals in experiments that are often invasive and painful. Experiments using animals as a substitution for human subjects are not useful and have proven harmful to humans. Ninety percent of drugs that pass animal studies fail in human studies. There is an entire industry profiting from creating and curing laboratory-simulated diseases in animals. This money should go to funding human based research using informed consent. Let us not forget that the curiosity of scientists has not always been ethical. The Nuremburg, Tuskegee and US military radiation experiments are reminders of what was once legal but obviously unethical.
Why focus primarily on UCLA?
Many of our activists are based in Los Angeles, California, so we will focus on righting the wrongs in our community first. The University of California at Los Angeles receives more than $1-billion a year in federal and private grants and contracts, for work on 5,500 research projects. Of those, about 1,300 involve experiments on 150,000 animals. Unlike most Western countries that have banned or severely restricted the use of nonhuman primates in research, it is still legal in the United States. Even so, most research universities have rejected the practice as archaic. UCLA remains one of the few to continue allowing such research.
Why focus on these UCLA vivisectors: Jentsch, London, Basso, and Ringatch?
They use primates and focus on animal model development. They have historically engaged in debate with anti-vivisectionists, with Jentsch leading a group to protect and advance the ability to use animals in research. They all receive tax-payer funding to conduct experiments on methamphetamine, schizophrenia, and nicotine addiction. These are all conditions for which human trials could both provide more useful and relevant information and actually assist humans suffering with these problems.
Why focus on University of Minnesota vivisector Marilyn Carroll?
Carroll is not the only researcher using primates and other species at the University of Minnesota. However, her 30-year history of tax-payer funded animal addiction studies has garnered the attention of the animal rights community, the addiction recovery community, and even the popular media who have identified her work as a waste of tax funding and animal lives. Carroll has been the focus of activists for about three decades, and she is close to retirement. Thus, it is imperative that we act now to prevent another researcher from jumping on her gravy train.
Why focus on nonhuman primates?
Some primates are more intelligent than developmentally disabled humans, but the law currently does not reflect this in protection status. Intelligence should not be the sole determining factor in protection, but it allows humans to identify more easily with species that are most similar to us. Other countries have banned or severely restricted the use of nonhuman primates in research. UCLA and the University of Minnesota are two of only a handful of universities still engaging in this practice. For these reasons, we focus on primates as the first step in this campaign. However, we oppose testing on any other-than-human species. We only support testing and research upon humans beings capable of giving consent.
Why focus on Delta Airlines?
Air France and KLM are two of the last remaining commercial airlines willing to ship natural and captive born primates and dogs to research facilities around the globe. Delta Airlines is their U.S. strategic partner, and their work could not continue without Delta’s support.
Focusing on Delta is an example of tertiary targeting and has seen some success in both the animal rights movement since the 1990s. For example, if an all vegan restaurant partnered with McDonald’s, even though they didn’t sell meat in their store, a compassionate consumer would likely do two things: 1.) boycott them because while not directly selling animals they are definitely making a profit off of them being sold through their partnership with McDonald’s and 2.) tell them to demand that McDonald’s stop selling animal flesh. We also engage in Delta protests in solidarity with Gateway to Hell and The Bunny Alliance, both of whom have acknowledged the efficacy of targeting Delta in the U.S.