Saturday, March 07, 2009
Animal Experimentation – A Wake-up Call
March Central London on April 25 2009: http://www.wdail.org
E mail Your MP http://www.writetothem.com
Help put HLS painlessly to sleep http://www.shac.net
Would drugs be safe for us without first being tested on animals? All of our questions answered: http://www.curedisease.net/edmcase.shtml
You may have heard the media blame animal activists for this or that but how much of what you hear is honest reporting? Are you buying into a fictitious tale that has taken on a life of its own and diverted our attention? How much of it gets to the root of the problem as opposed to highlighting one symptom? Well, things are set to change.
It was May 1st of 2007 when hundreds of police officers were despatched to crush the campaign against the animal testing Huntingdon Life Sciences, Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty (SHAC). Thirty addresses were invaded and 19 people arrested. In February of 2009 following protracted legal proceedings seven people were sentenced to a total of nearly 50 years for their tireless efforts to close down HLS, or ‘blackmail’ as the authorities have called it. Read the evidence, none of these people engaged in illegal activity in this campaign, although it is known that all have similar objectives to others who have broken the law in seeking a logical conclusion to the HLS problem. The SHAC activists were imprisoned for being party to a global drive to close HLS in which persons unknown have occasionally broken the law, or engaged in a conspiracy as it has become known. HLS and its workers break the law and so do police officers but there has been no similar=2 0campaign of harassment targeting these organisations with a view to dismantling them. This campaign against HLS and vivisection more generally has attracted a great deal of political intervention culminating in this series of trials and the building of more vivisection laboratories. A further trial of activists involved in the campaign against HLS is set for later in the year.
Something that hasn’t been reported by the media as they scream hysteria over the alleged harassment and what they lazily call terrorism is the second aspect of the punishment meted out to these compassion driven, non violent campaigners. Four have been served Anti Social behaviour Orders (ASBO’s) preventing them from – ever again – knowingly participating in, organising or controlling any; demonstration, gathering or website protesting against animal experimentation. The others have to avoid protesting in this extremist fashion against vivisection for five years upon release lest they be sent back to prison! This desecration of civil liberties comes from a Labour government that promised a review of animal experimentation! We are I hope waking to the fact that politicians are just puppets for higher powers and their agenda; and do not wield the power they represent.
Coupled with the mass killings, of humans and animals, this all sounds very negative but is merely symptomatic of the strength of the public will to end vivisection and take humanity and health care20forward. It also provides us with a wealth of evidence that we are on the right track and a footing for us to move forward. And that’s what we are about to do.
The campaign against HLS continues regardless of these pressures and the company flounders in a mess of its own making.
Before they got into government in 1997 the Labour Party pledged a Royal Commission into vivisection. On gaining power they not only reneged on that promise, but have repeatedly ignored calls for an independent inquiry into this untested theory while some 50 million animals have died in UK laboratories often of the most grotesque, unimaginable fashion. Tens of thousands of vulnerable patients have died too, poisoned by animal tested drugs that don’t work in humans. Barry Horne wasn’t suffering from any illness that could be
exploited but he was killed for having a conscience and trying to awake one in the same Labour MP’s who had refused to act on their pledge to the people. They have shown no remorse for any of these deaths. They are ruthless killers. http://www.barryhorne.org/
Since then they’ve sent in the shock troops to attack opponents of vivisection and as a consequence there are currently around 20 UK citizens serving up to 12 years in prison. The allegations levelled against them are broad ranging but the fine20detail of actual criminal offending is hard to find in the mountains of legal papers. None was ever accused of causing death or injury yet the industry they opposed massacres millions!
Today we do have an offer on the table from Labour’s politicians over a decade after they cynically broke their pledge and instead increased the number of animals used in laboratory tests. We are invited to ask our elected representatives (MP’s) to sign an Early Day Motion which for the first time ever calls for an inquiry into vivisection. The Safety of Medicines (Evaluation) Bill 2009 is intended to tackle the escalating problem of adverse drug reactions, which hospitalise one million Britons and cost the NHS £2 billion every year. However, this is not an independent inquiry. This is a crucial point. Should the Bill succeed:
Medicines Safety Evaluation Panel....
(1) The Secretary of State must, within six months of the date on which this Act is passed, appoint a Medicines Safety Evaluation Panel ("the Panel")
(2) The members of the Panel are to be appointed by the Secretary of State and must include:
(a) no fewer than two statisticians from the Office for National Statistics, and;
(b) no fewer than eight members of the National Institute for Health Research.
(3) The Secretary of State may nominate one of the m embers of the Panel to act as chairman.
(4) The Secretary of State must, in appointing members to the Panel, take steps to ensure that no members appointed have any commercial or other interests which may conflict with their duties on the Panel.
That politicians cannot be trusted is a given. In the last century 200 million people were killed by politicians in government, how many of us voted for that? That said, any investigation into animal experimentation will cause some very real fear in those who engage in this savagery and their sponsors. Forget a few placards and megaphones this is the stuff of nightmares for vivisectors. The wicked are at ease in the presence of fear and suffering yet are terrified by the outside world watching them inflict it. Any inspection of this highly secretive, dreadfully wasteful and grotesquely violent world must be wholeheartedly encouraged by us all, but with a watchful eye. Any failure to openly and honestly report the findings will be a sign of deceit and a personal insult, and will expose political contempt for the citizens of this country. Let’s not forget the devastating effect a proper assessment of the facts surrounding animal experiments will have on the almighty, the ruthless, pharmaceutical industry. The benefit to human medicine will be equally profound.
If you have not yet asked your MP to sign EDM 569, in support of the Safety of Medicines (Evaluation ) Bill 2009, please do so at http://www.writetothem.com/
EDM 569 is a chance to make history by statistically evaluating animal tests for medicine safety for the first time ever. Pro vivisection groups will not be supporting this review of vivisection and the reasons are clear.
the best guess for the correlation of adverse reactions in man and animal toxicity data is somewhere between 5% and 25% (Animal Toxicity Studies: Their Relevance to Man, Lumley and Walker (eds) (Quay, 1989), 57-67).
The recent undercover ADI/NAVS investigation into the primate trade and experimentation has given us a fresh opportunity to highlight the absolute futility of relying on such a negative process to find positive results.
This exposé has tracked the traffic in primates from their wonderful jungle home across continents in cages to a life of pure hell in a restraining chair in a dark British laboratory. The anti-vivisection cause had friendly eyes inside HLS’s primate unit! It could get no worse than for an animal to end its days inside the labyrinth of secret chambers that make up the Huntingdon Research Centre in Cambridgeshire which most people know as HLS or Huntingdon Life Sciences as they call themselves. Sick And Twisted would be more appropriate. This investigation is the umpteenth in recent years. They have been caught out falsifying test data, breaking their own Code of Conduct repeatedly and abusing animals wholesale. Barclays Bank is central to the HLS machine of today and allows HLS to continue the holocaust that accounts for 500 lives every single day. The RBS and Nat West have also conspired to save HLS. See http://www.shac.net/ to find out the real truth about the essential medical research that swallows your taxes and all hope of miraculous cures for the many things that make us ill.
The investigation by ADI/NAVS can be read here http://www.savetheprimates.org/primateban/news
This latest look into the evil world of the animal experimenter should be the end of the argument. Again we see, as we always do, that the so called science they use as the excuse for this money making violence is non existent. That this macabre behaviour is cruel and immoral is for the vast majority of humanity beyond question, and a panel of government appointed officials are not needed for intelligent people to figure this out.
You don’t need to see a video of a mouse or monkey being restrained and force fed chemicals to agree it’s little more than sadistic violence. So, what do ADI/NAVS demand as a response to this exposé? An independent inquiry into vivisection? That would be a positive step. An immediate ban? That would be truly revolutionary! The first solution would inevitably lead to the second. Instead we get the following list of demands from ADI/NAVS (in italics):
A prohibition on the use of great apes (without exceptions). Without exceptions would make the current ban on the use of great apes - chimpanzees, gorillas, bonobos and orangutans - relevant. As it stands this loophole in the law permits their use ‘in relation to an unexpected outbreak of a life-threatening or debilitating clinical condition in humans’. HLS aren’t using them and no lab in the UK is as far as is public.
A prohibition on the use of wild-caught monkeys (without exceptions). Does this imply that it is scientifically valid or morally acceptable to use monkeys born in a cage instead of animals trapped in the wild?
Full implementation of a phase out of F1 monkeys (offspring of wild-caught parents) (although we favour earlier than the 7 years phase-out suggested in the draft). Does this imply that it is scientifically valid or morally acceptable to use monkeys born in a cage instead of animals trapped in the wild?
Arrangements to replace the use of primates to be established during bi-annual, thematic reviews setting timetables or objectives for replacement in specific areas.... Arrangements with whom? When? Monkeys replaced with cats? Dogs? Rabbits?
Proposals to protect all animals:
Bi-annual reviews of the use of animals in specific tests, implementation of advanced replacements and other key issues – review every twenty years is too long – it means that the legislation does not keep up with developments in science and technology.
One independent inquiry would suffice and could cover all tests and save the most lives.
Improved transparency and public and scientific scrutiny of experiments. Improved regulatory testing scrutiny by governments. ‘Improved’ or complete? Is leaving the very institution that created the monster in charge of it a good idea? Doesn’t the UK already have the best standards in the world, according to the Home Office?
Compulsory data sharing to prevent duplication (as already implemented under REACH). But it’s still animal data and that is useless!
Rtrospective review of experiments so that the actual impacts of the experiments are judged, and any unforeseen suffering is reported. The animals are killed after they have suffered and nothing is learnt that is relevant to human medicine. Review done.
Independent ethical, scientific and replacement review of pro posals to use animals - before authorisation is given. An independent review is what is needed of the entire vivisection concept. Now! Instead of authorisation being given, not before. Morally, the use of another without given consent can never be permitted.
ADI further recommends (at p23) that:
HLS managers need to review their training and procedures, in light of modern thinking (and then they go on to quote from a vivisectors’ manual) for example ‘Primates should be trained to co-operate with restraint and handling using positive reinforcement techniques’ The implications of vivisectors taking up this meaningless rhetoric and applying it to their workplace are disastrous for animals and humans alike. It means that nothing really changes.
And (at p20):
It is clear that HLS management needs to invest more money, time and effort to increase supervision, improve facilities and implement a training programme for the staff and animals.
What a wasted opportunity this exposé would be if we allow its sponsors to use it for their own suspicious, trivial ends. If these are the animals’ friends then the animals are in big trouble. As to advancing medical progress: take another step backwards. No amount of investment will alter the logic that using animals to test things on is morally indefensible and scientifically unproven and for a pro animal/anti vivisection organisation to suggest that this mythology should continue is incomprehensible.
After HLS workers were exposed in 1997 the Labour government was compelled to impose some of what they jointly agreed to call ‘stringent conditions’ on HLS management, which was juggled to launch the new, 'improved’ animal extermination facility and staff training was ‘improved’. And here in the latest investigation we see the results. Regulating violence is so not the way ahead!
It looks more and more like the only people who are going to make a difference are the activists on the ground at the grass roots and those who provide the initiative, the resources and the support, they are the true heroes in this society who not do deals with the devil and do not compromise with the lives of others. To mark World Month for Animals in Laboratories 2009, to highlight the role of the government in the increased use of animals in failed experiments and poisoning procedures and of course for the animals, our own benefit and the future of health care thousands of concerned citizens will be gathering in Central London on April 25 http://www.wdail.org/
If you want something doing then you have to do it yourself. If you really want to help make some real changes then you have to act and now is the time to do so.
If you care about animals, your children and medical progress then you should do some research here: http://vivisection-absurd.org.uk/ and then do all you can to expose and rid our world of these places, where leading human medicine astray by torturing animals is somehow normalised. If you care about animals as civilised people do, then you know what to do. Something! No pressure cos the world is full of people like you but the time to speak out and act is now.
Keith Mann March 2009 firstname.lastname@example.org