by Linda Beane (The Examiner, Original Title: “His Name Was Louis”)
Today I am writing about the future of our cities youth and their exposure to a compassionate and empathic world where animals are treated as respected beings not as commodities. We all want great happiness and success for our children, this starts with their education. Though we have a common experience and familiarity in our offspring’s first twelve years of schooling, once they enter college their final impressions and decisions will be formatted under the tollage of a variety of diverse educators.
So how does this become an issue of animal welfare? Very simple. As our young students select their college and then their specialized fields of education some of the classes in the student’s curriculum might require studies that are specialized in research, biology, sciences and other similar subjects. Some of these may present with the practice of vivisection, an archaic and dubious method of teaching, one in which helpless, sentient beings are forced to submit to painful, deadly and terrifying tests. Some of these animals die after one experiment, other creatures are used year after year until they finally decease from the misery and constant trauma.
Today many colleges students are very uncomfortable with using animals as test subjects. The extreme torture animals suffer in laboratory experiments can almost lead one to believe there could be some sadism practiced here. We can no longer ignore nor expose our children to such tests or fail to acknowledge that vivisection has been denounced and refuted with many experts proclaiming the results they accrue as meaningless. It could be alleged that many colleges ignore the more sophisticated and accurate means of study, such as DNA, stem cells research and computer modeling in preference to the use of animals as it brings in a great deal of government money. Indeed vivisection could allegedly be called a profitable endeavor, even though lacking validity.
For example lets note what is happening these past few months at the University of Florida. This is a well accredited college your child might be considering as an option to further their careers. The controversy surrounding the vile vivisection at UF has resulted in quite a bit of turmoil and legalities. This in its self sends a bad message to students already hesitant and feeling conflicted about their mandate to use animals in painful tests.
It began when Camille Marino, founder of NIO and a dedicated vivisection protester, requested the public records of experiments at UF on primates in October 2010 and consequently was refused any or all access to the aforementioned documents by the University of Florida. This request was finally settled in court though a formal lawsuit filed by NIO on December 30, 2011, it was ruled upon and The University Of Florida was ordered to give their public records to Camille Marino by Jan 3, 2012, 4:22 PM.
While other legalities are still pending, such as location of primates on premises, the vivisection records have proven to be very informative and allegedly quite an expose. Lets take a look at just one primate’s experience, a long tailed macaque named Louis, who with other of his species was actually bred and sold for the mere purpose of being a test subject. He was received by Stephen Roberts a vivisector at UF on February 25, 2008, at the time he was 5 years old.
Upon his arrival Louis was so upset he became chronically anorexic with continuous vomiting. What this animal had experienced at the hands of other vivisectors left this poor creature emotionally devastated. To think he was now to be used for more painful tests which would serve no purpose, was tragic.
The records show that on July 9, 2009, it was determined by the UF vet that Louis had an injury to his bone, the femoral head. He was suffering intense pain, his leg having no connection to the joint. Humans with this same kind of injury would be receiving strong pain medication and definitely would need and receive a hip replacement. Louis was offered none of these options, left suffering in agony, his bone grinding against bone.
For the next year he lived in a metabolism cage that was especially made to collect his urine and feces while studying his drug metabolism. When not in this special testing cage he was reunited with the other four macaque which were part of his initial colony. During this year he received a great deal of drugs as it was painful for him to be moved from the one room for tests, then returned. It was noted he ate very little food, this could be attributed to the unbearable pain he was suffering.
During all this time students were assisting with the care and experiments on this animal. I can imagine their stress levels were very high, watching Louis suffer would be difficult and made more so by the situation where ones conscience has to be over ruled by ones educational requirements.
On April 26, 2010: the records on Louis ended with this quote“…Long term, this monkey has been unable to be used…”
That was it…. This is your vivisection. This is the future for those whose studies demand experiments, studies where live animals, in this case primates were used like commodities and students learned what? Nothing. They would have received the same knowledge and more had they used modern, high tech, non-animal testing methods now advocated.
Our children are our future and they need to learn … but they also must not lose their humanity for nothing is left for them without a soul.
As your students apply for the colleges of their choice remember The University of Florida and this article. And please … remember “His name was Louis. ”
I can only end this in a silent and thoughtful moment.