What are  Peter Singer’s view's on the issue and his views on testing on animals?

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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Singer takes a philosophical perspective in assessing the issue of animals' rights.  Essentially, he uses utilitarianism with a twist to discuss the issue of testing on animals.  Singer wants the philosophical perspective to pivot towards a view that is not speciest, one that does not place sole primacy on human beings.  Singer makes the argument that there is greater suffering introduced in the world when killing is evident.  For example, Singer argues that killing, in general, brings about an element of unhappiness to people.  It is here where he argues that animal testing or the killing of animals has to be viewed as something that must be avoided.  Singer continues this by assessing that some animals move closer to the relam of being viewed as humans, provided that the speciest reasoning of human superiority is avoided.  In this light, animal testing or killing is seen as wrong because it would be akin to doing the same to human beings, something automatically rejected.  For example, a human being in a cage and being tested upon would be deemed as unacceptable.  If this is the case and some animals, such as primates, are seen as human, the same moral standard applies.  In this, a case is laid out against animal testing and experimentation.

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