A Rat Is a Pig Is a Dog Is a Boy: The Human Cost of the Animal Rights Movement

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Encounter Books, Jul 17, 2012 - Philosophy - 336 pages
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Over the past thirty years, as Wesley J. Smith details in his latest book, the concept of animal rights has been seeping into the very bone marrow of Western culture. One reason for this development is that the term “animal rights” is so often used very loosely, to mean simply being nicer to animals. But although animal rights groups do sometimes focus their activism on promoting animal welfare, the larger movement they represent is actually advancing a radical belief system.

For some activists, the animal rights ideology amounts to a quasi religion, one whose central doctrine declares a moral equivalency between the value of animal lives and the value of human lives. Animal rights ideologues embrace their beliefs with a fervor that is remarkably intense and sustained, to the point that many dedicate their entire lives to “speaking for those who cannot speak for themselves.” Some believe their cause to be so righteous that it entitles them to cross the line from legitimate advocacy to vandalism and harassment, or even terrorism against medical researchers, the fur and food industries, and others they accuse of abusing animals.

All people who love animals and recognize their intrinsic worth can agree with Wesley J. Smith that human beings owe animals respect, kindness, and humane care. But Smith argues eloquently that our obligation to humanity matters more, and that granting “rights” to animals would inevitably diminish human dignity.
In making this case with reason and passion, A Rat Is a Pig Is a Dog Is a Boy strikes a major blow against a radically antihuman dogma.

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Foreword by Dean Koontz Preface to the Paperback Edition
For the Animals
Animal Advocacy Isn t What It Used to
All Animals Are Equal Chapter 3 Animals Are People
Let It Begin with Apes
Here Comes the Judge Chapter 6 The Silver Spring Monkey Case
The Death of a Thousand Cuts
Proselytizing Children
By Any Means Necessary Chapter 9 Advocating Terror Chapter 10 Tertiary Targeting
Praising with Faint Condemnation
Murder They Wrote?
For the People Chapter 13 Animal Rights vs Medical Research Chapter 14 Our System ofAnimal Research Chapter 15 Ensuring the Proper Care of La...
Fur Hunting and Zoos
The Importance of Being Human Supplement Acknowledgments Notes Index

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About the author (2012)

Wesley J. Smith, a Senior Fellow in Human Rights and Bioethics at the Discovery Institute, is the author of the prizewinning Culture of Death: The Assault on Medical Ethics in America, as well as Consumer’s Guide to a Brave New World and Forced Exit: Euthanasia, Assisted Suicide, and the New Duty to Die. He lives in Castro Valley, California, with his wife, the syndicated columnist Debra J. Saunders.

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