Spain plans human rights for great apes

The Brussels Journal reports that the Spanish Socialist Party is now pushing through legislation to grant "moral and legal" rights to the great apes.

This is following the Great Apes Project manifesto, which proclaims:

We demand the extension of the community of equals to include all great apes: human beings, chimpanzees, bonobos, gorillas and orang—utans.

We believe that the Spanish socialists are thinking too small. Human rights for apes is just species bias because they happen to look like you and me.It ignores birds, reptiles, insects and worms, just because they don't look warm and fuzzy.


For example, Professor Irene Pepperberg has shown that African Grey Parrots can have loving social relationships, and can learn to speak hundreds of words. African Greys should certainly be granted moral and human rights by international law.

Whales and dolphins have bigger brains than humans do. Monkeys (macacca mulatta) are used in scientific labs all over the world to study pain. Any animal that can feel pain must be protected.


Rat mothers give out high—pitched distress cries when their pups are taken away. You can tickle a rat, and it will roll over and giggle, just like a dog. It's in the New York Times, so it must be true.


Fruit flies have about 50% overlap with human genes. Fruit fly brains have a million neurons. Practically everything we know about genetics came from them. As a species they are one of the greatest benefactors of mankind. Medical drugs are now designed using genetics learned from fruit flies, who have sacrificed their lives for you and me.


The round worm C. Elegans has a body plan that is controlled by Hox genes that are very much like ours. Their nerve cells are identical to ours. They can tell the difference between self and other, a basic requirement for moral judgment.

All creatures, great and small, deserve the protection of Spanish law. We trust that the legislators of Madrid, having put the memory of the terrorist train bombings behind them, will now march fearlessly   toward a future in which all species will get the human rights they deserve.

Along with the right to free abortions at government expense, of course.

James Lewis  5 13 06

The Brussels Journal reports that the Spanish Socialist Party is now pushing through legislation to grant "moral and legal" rights to the great apes.

This is following the Great Apes Project manifesto, which proclaims:

We demand the extension of the community of equals to include all great apes: human beings, chimpanzees, bonobos, gorillas and orang—utans.

We believe that the Spanish socialists are thinking too small. Human rights for apes is just species bias because they happen to look like you and me.It ignores birds, reptiles, insects and worms, just because they don't look warm and fuzzy.


For example, Professor Irene Pepperberg has shown that African Grey Parrots can have loving social relationships, and can learn to speak hundreds of words. African Greys should certainly be granted moral and human rights by international law.

Whales and dolphins have bigger brains than humans do. Monkeys (macacca mulatta) are used in scientific labs all over the world to study pain. Any animal that can feel pain must be protected.


Rat mothers give out high—pitched distress cries when their pups are taken away. You can tickle a rat, and it will roll over and giggle, just like a dog. It's in the New York Times, so it must be true.


Fruit flies have about 50% overlap with human genes. Fruit fly brains have a million neurons. Practically everything we know about genetics came from them. As a species they are one of the greatest benefactors of mankind. Medical drugs are now designed using genetics learned from fruit flies, who have sacrificed their lives for you and me.


The round worm C. Elegans has a body plan that is controlled by Hox genes that are very much like ours. Their nerve cells are identical to ours. They can tell the difference between self and other, a basic requirement for moral judgment.

All creatures, great and small, deserve the protection of Spanish law. We trust that the legislators of Madrid, having put the memory of the terrorist train bombings behind them, will now march fearlessly   toward a future in which all species will get the human rights they deserve.

Along with the right to free abortions at government expense, of course.

James Lewis  5 13 06