Rights: Humans and Animals


During this past semester, we have discussed numerous topics that I consider to be very important to society as a whole.  Abortion, euthanasia and animal rights were three of the most controversial topics.  The three aforementioned topics are quite important since they deal specifically with human life and the life of animals across the board.  As for abortion and euthanasia, how can we allow this to be an option?  Society should not allow this to occur, especially with your tax dollars being spent to support someone’s irresponsibility or choice to have unprotected sex.  Euthanasia hits close to home because we too must ensure we take care of our elderly, those who loved us, raised us, and contributed to whom we are today.  An animal right is a value I hold close to my heart.  From childhood, we have always had pets, specifically a dog-named Duke.  This dog was my best friend, always brightened my day and was ready to play catch.  Today, I have expanded my views on animal rights to include cows and any other animal us humans will consume in order to survive.  In the following analysis, I will argue that we must protect human life to the fullest extent possible as well as for animals-rights since they cannot speak for themselves.

Having demonstrated the importance of life, abortion is wrong, seriously immoral, except in rare cases, and it is in the same moral category as killing an innocent adult human being.[1]  Roe v. Wade in 1973 became and remains the most controversial ruling in US Court history.[2]  The ruling provided regulations for elective and medically required abortions.  During my younger years, the thought of abortions didn’t bother me, but now after discussing the topic in class I have had a change of heart and now live with a conservative view.  According to Don Marquis, a philosophy professor at the University of Kansas, “The loss of one’s life deprives one of all experiences, activities, projects and enjoyments that would otherwise have constituted one’s future.  Therefore, killing someone is wrong, primarily because the killing inflicts (one of) the greatest possible losses on the victim.”  I agree whole-heartedly with his argument and we all must ensure we protect the lives of those who cannot speak for themselves.  A reading from this past semester about the violinist being connected to a human for nine months brought up several important points.  First, nine months is not a long period if you compare that to our life expectancy, which is now just shy of 80 years old.  I believe that disconnecting a healthy person from the violinist who would only need your help for a short time period is selfish and dead wrong.  For the other side of life, we should allow abortions for victims of rape or for woman who could possibly die from birthing a child.  I do not hold those two categories as being immoral.  The rape victim did not choose to suffer this violent act; thus becoming pregnant.  As for the mother-to-be, possibly chose to procreate and have good intentions to raise her child.  For unseen medical reasons, birthing a child could cause her own demise and that is not within the scope of my argument.  Women have an option to birth a child and then surrender the baby for adoption.  Killing an innocent baby is morally wrong and inhumane.  Just as I have argued for the protection of life, let’s discuss the same issue but at the opposite end of the spectrum, euthanasia.

Building on that same principle of life we must also oppose euthanasia, which is a controversial topic within our country.  On October 27, 1997 Oregon enacted the Death with Dignity Act, which allows terminally ill Oregonians to end their lives through the voluntary self-administration of lethal medications, expressly prescribed by a physician for that purpose.[3]  YouTube published a video of an individual named Roger Sanger, who wished to die with dignity in 2009.  Roger was given the option to change his mind and remain with the living.  Roger declined and chose to drink a deadly dose of Nembutal, which put him to sleep then death.  Although Roger appeared to die a painless death, this video brought tears my eyes and left me wondering why someone would choose death.  Roger was accompanied by family and friends which none took the time to try and convince him to change his mind.  J. Gay-Williams stated euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide are irreversible and it works against our own interest if we practice it or allow it to be practiced on us.[4]  It should be known that those who die due to an allergic reaction from a medicine or their body did not respond to treatment is excluded from this argument.  Life is the most precious thing we have so we must protect it to the fullest.  We all have motives in life and by allowing someone to commit suicide thus making our bankroll fat, is a damn shame.  A person dying relieves us of the responsibly to care for them.  We now have more time to do what we want instead of take care of someone who took care of us such as your Mother and Father.  As for these two issues, we should protect life and encourage those that wish to die, to think about what they are doing.  It maybe possible they are not thinking clearly about their actions so we must ensure they know exactly what is going on, so they don’t leave earth prematurely.

Building further on the two previous topics, we should also support animal-rights.  We have already mentioned that abortion and euthanasia are both morally wrong and although animals cannot communicate with humans, we know they feel pain.  We must ensure they are protected from inhumane treatment and not purposely abused or injured.[5]  In order for humans to survive, we do not have to consume meat.  By eating meat, which is a good source of iron, we tend to live a more balanced and healthy lifestyle.  I don’t mean overeating but to a certain extent eating meat is fine.  According to Kant, we have no “direct duties” to animals because they lack personal attributes such as rationality, self-consciousness, and free will.[6]  I do agree with Kant, but that does not give us the right to abuse them in anyway.  This part of my argument sounds hypocritical, so let me further explain myself.  I am not opposing eating meat, but I am opposing the abuse and torture these animals suffer as they die.  If we must eat meat, let’s treat these animals humanly and provide them a painless death.  In April, the Stanford Slaughterhouse located in Central California, was shutdown due to inhumane cattle treatment.  A video surfaced showing workers abusing cattle.  I do consume meat, not very much, but the little amount I do brings to light the importance of this topic and how much we should protect animals from abuse and torture.  I would like to think all animals are slaughtered in a humane manner but I know that isn’t the case.  Unfortunately, animal rights is a rarely, if ever spoken, discussed and only comes to light when a celebrity makes it known they support animal-rights.

Life is the most important thing to us and we should protect it to the end.  Abortion, euthanasia and torturing animals are morally wrong.  We have an obligation to help those who cannot do so for themselves such as those babies [fetus] under 15 weeks old.  As for our elderly, they too deserve our help.  After all, they are someone’s brother, sister, son, daughter, father, or mother, who took care of us as newborns, infants or young kids.  As for animal-rights, we owe them the same since they are too living animals.  We have an ethic and moral obligation to reduce, if not completely eliminate, all torture and abuse us humans inflict on animals.  Starting today, join me and stand against abortion, euthanasia and animal abuse.

[1] Marquis, J. (1989). Why abortion is immoral. Journal of philosophy, 86, 183-202.

[2] Roe v wade: Key us abortion ruling. (2004, December 10). BBC News. Retrieved from http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/49315.stm

[3] Oregon Department of Public Health, (1997). Death with dignity act. Retrieved from State of Oregon website:  http://public.health.oregon.gov/ProviderPartnerResources/Evaluationresearch/deathwithdignityact/Pages/index.aspx

[4] Gay-Williams, J. (1979). The wrongfulness of euthanasia. Intervention and reflection: Basic issues in medical ethics, 709-711.

[5] Romero, E. (Performer) (2013). Animal rights [Radio series episode]. In Valley public radio. Bakersfield, CA: Valley public radio. Retrieved from http://www.kvpr.org/post/california-animal-welfare-bill-creates-controversy-critics-call-it-ag-gag

[6] Kant, I. (1963). Lecture on ethics. (pp. 239-241). Routledge Publishing.


Die with dignity?

Since I can remember, life is the most precious thing.  I was taught to live each day to the fullest because tomorrow isn’t guaranteed.  Don’t get me wrong, not everyday in my life has been perfect but none have ever been so bad that I wanted to die.  I didn’t think this weeks assignment was going to be difficult but it’s quite to opposite.

The above YouTube video filmed in Oregon shows an old man asking for his lethal dose of Nembutal, which will place his body in a coma, and then he will die.  I’ve never seen anyone want to die without hesitation.  The individual, Roger Sanger, was eager to die to get rid of his problems.  Roger appeared to be cognizant about what was about to occur yet there wasn’t a worry in the world.  Watching this video brought numerous tears to my eyes wondering how in heck could someone wish to die!

Euthanasia offers people an easy way out of their responsibilities.  Don’t get me wrong, if someone were to die due to an allergic reaction from a medication or his or her body didn’t respond to the treatment, I can sleep with that.  But the killing of an innocent person is just flat out wrong!  If we allow people to start offing themselves, where is this going to stop?

Keeping someone is what we’ve taught from birth but to assist someone to die is unethical.  Be it from a physician’s perspective or that of a family member waiting to collect on their behalf.  This service is obviously costly and not covered by the taxpayer so these people pay out of pocket for this once in a lifetime opportunity.  The State of Oregon should be ashamed for supporting this atrocious activity.

Ohio and Capitol Punishment

On March 6, 2013, Ohio executed the Fred Treesh making him the 50th person to die by capitol punishment.  Treesh was convicted of murdering Henry Dupree in 1994 during a drug spree killing.  Treesh walked seventeen steps from his cell to the death chamber where he was put to death by lethal injection.  The entire execution lasted sixteen minutes from injection to death.  Outside the building waited a hearse to transport his body out of the prison to his next of kin.

This execution was used as a documentary for the DARE program to educate the youth about the death penalty and deter crime in Ohio.  During one point in Treesh’s interview, he stated to a reporter, “if it helps one person, it’s worth it.”  That statement can only be true if the state where you committed this heinous crime believes in the death sentence.  If not, you’ll live in jail until your heart stops beating.

Capitol punishment is a sensitive issue since this is the only punishment that is irreversible.  Once someone has been put to death, there is no bring him / her back.  This form of punishment cannot be taken lightly and must be carried out impartially.  Race shall not play a role when handing down the death penalty.

I want to believe this system is perfect and unfortunately this isn’t the case.  That small margin of error makes me think twice about this form of punishment except in cases where evidence is beyond, beyond, I mean beyond a reasonable doubt.  When and only when we know with 100% certainty the person convicted of murder is guilty, should they pay the ultimate price.  This is a necessary evil that we, law-bidding citizens, have as a deterrent from those perpetrators who pray on the weak.  Life is the most precious thing on earth, yet we must ensure those who commit murder(s) are no longer allowed to live among us.

I love my shoes….

There are plenty of commercials asking you to donate to save a hungry child in a country halfway around the world.  They show children that are malnourished, need medical attention and have a short life expectancy.  They obviously play on your hearts and minds by asking for a few cents per day.

I think it’s great to donate but not to the point where you’re putting your family at risk.  Most of us go out and buy clothing and shoes we want and do not need.  Now what I mean by want is clothing that serves no purpose but makes you well dressed.  If you need an article of clothing to keep you warm or a pair of shoes you need for everyday use that’s not an issue.  We all understand and no one chooses to be cold.

Let’s take a look at something closer to home; a child drowning in a lake and no one is around but you.  You’re wearing a nice pair of shoes.  You need those shoes to jump in this lake since there are rocks and stones and you cannot reach here without these shoes.  Now, I hope we’d all jump in and save this girl from drowning and value life over materialistic things.

Imagine the same scenario but this time there are several other people around watching this girl in distress.  Do you jump in and help this girl?  Do you wait for someone else to jump in so you can keep from ruining a pair of shoes?  Just because others are around doesn’t lessen the burden we have to save a life.  I hope you would jump in and save this little girl.

I currently do not give as much as I’d like, but I am hoping once I finish my education I’ll be able to donate a bigger percentage of my salary.  I have a personal goal set for myself and I plan to diligently work towards this goal by donating time and money to a worthy cause.

What should we / you do?

I love burgers!!!

The Carl’s Jr. and Kate Upton commercial would attract any man (generally speaking) since we love sex (hot chicks) and food. The attention span of a typical male these days is quite short (I know bad joke, huh?). Well, Kate Upton does an outstanding job in gaining and holding a man’s attention for longer than his girlfriend or wife. At best, we listen for about 3 to 5 seconds and then we think about something else, usually sex or food or both.

Carl’s Jr indeed makes some great burgers and have recently rolled out several new ones. The only way a man will know what they offer on their menu is to advertise a burger with a very attractive lady stripping down and eating their burger. This advertisement reinforces my belief that most men are stubborn and generally eat the same thing each time they visit a particular restaurant; therefore, we need to be shown what is now being offered at your local Carl’s or Hardee’s. This commercial appears to be sexist because it’s only attracting the male sex, well maybe a few ladies dig it too. Carl’s has rolled out several sexist commercials in the past, each one with a different attractive girl doing something, stripping down and eating their latest creation.

Most people, need a motive to do anything. No one goes out to do something just for the heck of it. There is always something in it for me. Kate Upton is their motivator and convinces men to go out and try this new burger. I think the first guy that’s going straight to Carl’s is the guy to Upton’s left side watching her eat that burger.

Lastly, I didn’t think this commercial was so bad it couldn’t be air during the Super Bowl. I believe it was fit for the general public. What would convince me would be the price paid for the 30 second commercial, $4M.

Porn… Do you watch?

After reading this weeks porn articles, I wasn’t surprised by all of the mixed feelings and emotions surrounding porn.  It was interesting to view other people’s opinions about porn and sex as it applies to the feminist movement.  One point I was surprised to read was that porn leads to violence towards woman.  I personally had never read any documentation about porn causing violence toward woman.  Feminist may view porn as degrading and maybe the act or a woman’s sexual expressions or lack of constituting violence.

Porn and sex appeals to the majority of Americans.  In the last section of the article, the author makes a very good case for sex.  Wendy McElroy contends sex is good personally and politically on these three levels.  The first being masturbation since its uncommon for a woman to reach adulthood without knowing how to pleasures themselves.  Next, this allows woman to “sexplore” in a safe manner and lastly, offers emotional information that can only be learned through sexual experiences, either directly or indirectly.  I don’t view porn as a negative thing but as a way to understand your body and which in-turn allows you to experience intimacy in a different way.  The article also mentions porn can be used by couples to keep things exciting without going outside the marriage thus committing adultery.

Porn stars are in the business because they choose that lifestyle.  They, especially the females can make a great living and can invest in other business ventures.  I don’t feel sorry for them one bit, they love the fame and glory that comes by performing sexual acts in front of the camera.  Several porn starts have built empires with their income generated from the porn industry.  Who knew they [females] could have it so good.

What are your feelings?

Affirmative Action Gone Wild!!!

Affirmative action has always been an interesting topic. I’m an immigrant from Mexico, English is my second language and I grew up in a predominantly white community. As a child and even into my teenage years, I never experienced any discrimination or the need for affirmative action. I’ve held several jobs as a young adult and never felt the need for this injustice law. I’ve always felt I needed to educate myself, stay out of trouble and work hard to improve my communication skills.

After reading both articles, I wasn’t shocked by the first reading but I was a but surprised by the second reading. The first reading, I felt was based on hate and anger; while the second reading was written from the heart and provided valid reasons to discontinue affirmative action. Her article really hit on several key points and I can relate to her feelings. She said affirmative action makes whites look better while blacks look worse than in they are in life. I understand why she doesn’t want anything for free, a token, for being black.

In Phoenix, Arizona, they are hiring minorities as lifeguards although they are not the best swimmers. The city said they can train them to be better swimmers. If I had children, I’d be reluctant to let them go swim in a public pool fearing they may drown because the city hired subpar lifeguards. I pray these lifeguard’s skills are never put to the test in fear they will fail. Could you imagine if this was the case with your physician? He or she was given a token pass for being non-white? I prefer a qualified candidate over someone who looks like me so I’d feel comfortable. Affirmative action only undermines those who work hard to achieve success and benefits those who are under qualified or non-white.

What do you think?