Human Exceptionalism

“Ape Rights:” Not Taking it Seriously is Precisely the Wrong Approach

Begin rant:

The animal rights crowd has many allies in their fight to elevate animals to the moral equivalents of human life. One is the media, that almost always misses the big point and treats their advocacy as merely about being “nicer to animals.” Another are all those folk in the media and out who hear about stories such as this and rather than really focusing on what it all means, instead roll their eyes and go about their business with a chuckle, dismissing the matter as just another example about how ridiculous some things have become.

The latter approach was taken by the NY Post, reporting the story under “Weird but True.” From the story:

In Spain, all men and simians are created equal. The country’s parliament approved a resolution extending the right to life and freedom to great apes. “This is a historic day in the struggle for animal rights and in defense of our evolutionary comrades,” said Pedro Pozas of the Great Apes Project. Hey, try “evolutionary comrade” next time you want to call someone a big ape.

This is utterly inadequate. And it helps their cause tremendously by allowing animal rights ideologues to continue their serious and subversive work unhindered by serious opposition, which puts human exceptionalism–the predicate to universal human rights–at extreme peril.

And I am sorry, but it frustrates the heck out of me. I see it so often in my speeches. I make a point of bringing this kind of threat up in almost every presentation, and the audience invariably titters and rolls their eyes. I feel like pounding the podium and telling them to take it seriously!

This isn’t parody. Indeed, parody doesn’t work anymore because as we saw in the “plants rights” story, they always catch up to us.

And it matters a lot because the very moral and philosophical bases of society are teetering. But people keep insisting that “it can’t happen here.” but IT–which covers a lot of ground and a lot of issues–is happening here. Now.

So please, if just to reduce my blood pressure, stop laughing. Thank you.

End rant.

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