Thursday, May 10, 2012

It's Just a Matter of Principle

It's really hard to fact check when the facts are intentionally hidden. Errors and mistakes are inevitable in such cases; they come with the territory when one writes about the use of animals in laboratories, even so-called public university labs.

But when the facts aren't being intentionally hidden, fact-checking ought to be something everyone who voices an opinion should do. Of course, in the case of UW-Madison primate vivisectors, the facts hardly matter.

You may be unaware of a legal battle going on right now in Israel over the export of monkeys from the Mazor Primate Breeding Farm to SNBL (Shin Nippon Biomedical Laboratories, Ltd.) a gigantic monkey lab in Washington state.

Israeli law allows the exportation of wild-caught monkeys for biomedical research only in certain cases. See 'Export of 90 monkeys to US legally problematic' JOANNA PARASZCZUK. The Jerusalem Post. 04/04/2012.

Product testing isn't one of the approved reasons for allowing export. SNBL is a contract testing lab -- they'll test anything on a monkey for a price. At the hub of the case is the question of what SNBL intends to do with them, and SNBL won't say.

In spite of this obvious problem, two vivisectors from UW-Madison's National Primate Research Center have urged Israel to ship this group of monkeys to SNBL no matter what might be done to them. They suppose that SNBL will kill them for a good reason, but they, like everyone else, have no idea what would be done to them.

See this: 'They would wince, scream, tremble and shake': U.S. lab investigated for horrific abuse of test monkeys. By Rachel Quigley. The Daily Mail. December 2011.

To the UW vivisectors, it's just a matter of principle: poisoning and killing monkeys ought not be limited in any way -- even if no one knows what will be done to them or why. Read their letters here.

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