Saturday, November 19, 2011

UW Research Forum No. 5

I do not want to belabor the point, but the UW-Madison Animal Research Forums that came about as the direct result of the university's absolute terror that a non-aligned citizen's panel empowered by a local governmental body to look at at and form an opinion about their use of monkeys has failed miserably to live up to the stated and implicitly promised goals of the series.

Nevertheless, and in spite of the near complete failure of the "forums" to educate the public about what is happening to animals in the university labs, I've enjoyed them. But entertainment wasn't the goal.

For more of my informative and incredibly insightful observations on this series, I'm sure you'll want to review these comments:

"Forum" Keeps Details Hidden October 22, 2011.

This is Jeopardy! April 2, 2011.

Dr. Lawrence Hansen's Visit Frightens UW Vivisectors into Hiding February 27, 2010.

So far, the forum speakers have been, from first to most recent:

Lawrence Hansen, M.D. An animal advocate from California with no knowledge of the university's use of animals.
Gary Varner, Ph.D. A philosopher from Texas A&M with no knowledge of the university's use of animals.
Charles Snowdon, a professor in the Psychology Dept who used tamarins, but who said he has no real knowledge of what is currently happening to monkeys at the university.
Paul Kaufman, M.D., who uses monkeys in his invasive glaucoma and presbyopia experiments, but who avoided talking about the monkeys themselves.
Andrew Rowan, Director of The Humane Society of the United States' Pain & Distress Campaign; adjunct professor at Tufts University School of Veterinary Medicine; senior fellow at the Tufts Center for Animals and Public Policy; faculty member at the Center for Alternatives to Animal Testing. He too had no knowledge of the university's use of animals.

I had always heard that Rowan was a matter-of-fact welfarist who embraced the efficacy of animal models. I was quite surprised by his talk. I was either wrong, or else he has come around.

Watch his presentation here or below.

Andrew Rowan animal ethics forum from luciano M on Vimeo.

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