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The Ethical Case
Against Fur Farming

Summary

1. An increasing number of European countries have, or are in the process of, introducing legislation to curtail, or prohibit, fur farming, including Italy, Austria, Sweden, and the Netherlands. Last year, fur farming was outlawed in England and Wales on the ground of ‘public morality’. Similar legislation has now been passed in Scotland.

2.Concern for the right treatment of animals has a long legislative history. Society has a clear stake in safeguarding animals from acts of cruelty. Human beings benefit from living in a society where cruelty is actively discouraged.

3. The evidence shows that it is unreasonable, even perfidious, to suppose that fur farming does not impose suffering on what are essentially wild animals kept in barren environments in which their behavioural needs are frustrated.

4. Growing ethical concern for animals has been reinforced by considerable intellectual work on the status of animals. There is an emerging consensus among ethicists for fundamental change.

5. There is a strong, rational case for animal protection. Animals make a special moral claim upon us because, inter alia, they are morally innocent, unable to give or withhold their consent, vocalise their needs, and because they are wholly vulnerable to human exploitation. These considerations make the infliction of suffering upon them not easier – but harder to justify.

6. Law has a proper role in defending the weak and the vulnerable from exploitation, including animals and children.

7. There is increasing evidence of a link between the abuse of animals and other forms of violence, notably against women and children. It is an increasingly viable assumption that a world in which abuse to animals goes unchecked is bound to be a less morally safe world for human beings.

8. Those who regard the infliction of suffering on animals as intrinsically objectionable rightly oppose fur farming. In their view, there are certain acts against vulnerable subjects that are so morally outrageous that they can never be morally licit.

9. Fur farming is, however, also unacceptable to those who hold that the infliction of suffering can sometimes be justified. Fur farming fails a basic test of moral necessity. It is wholly unjustifiable to subject animals to prolonged suffering for trivial ends, such as fur coats or fashion accessories. Fur is a non-essential luxury item.

10. It is sometimes argued that fur farming is justifiable because it is consistent with religious notions that animals can be used for human benefit. But Judaism, Christianity, and Islam have never held that our use of animals should be illimitable or without moral constraint.

11. The claim that banning fur farming is an infringement of legitimate freedom is untenable; many previous cruelties (now illegal) have been defended on that basis. There can be no civil right to be cruel.

12. It is sometimes held that Member States should wait for the European Commission to act on issues of animal welfare. In fact, under the 1999 protocol, Member States already have the responsibility to ‘fully consider animal welfare’ as well as the freedom to initiate appropriate legislation. One Commissioner has publicly stated that some Member States are failing to comply with even their existing responsibilities.

13. In a democratic society, the law should properly reflect our changed ethical perception of animals and, specifically, the public’s long-standing opposition to fur farming.

14. There is an overwhelming case for the abolition of fur farming on ethical grounds. We urg all EU countries to give urgent consideration to such legislation on the ground of public morality.

1. An increasing number of European countries have, or are in the process of, introducing legislation to curtail, or prohibit, fur farming, including Italy, Austria, Sweden, and the Netherlands. Last year, fur farming was outlawed in England and Wales on the ground of ‘public morality’. Similar legislation has now been passed in Scotland.

An increasing number of European countries are legislating against fur farming. Italy and Austria have already imposed such stringent animal welfare conditions on fur farming that the practice has, in effect, become uneconomic. The Netherlands has already agreed to phase out fox farming over ten years, and is now considering a similar move against mink farming. A move by Sweden to ban fur farming on ethical grounds now appears imminent. Last year, the Westminster Parliament of the United Kingdom passed the Fur Farming (Prohibition) Bill, which makes it a criminal offence in England and Wales to keep animals solely or primarily for slaughter for the value of their fur, or for breeding progeny for such slaughter. A similar measure has recently been passed by the Scottish Parliament.

The principal ground cited for this legislation within the United Kingdom is ‘public morality’. The Parliamentary Secretary to the (then) Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, Elliot Morley, gave the following account of the Government’s position:xxxindent Morality is important when it comes to the treatment of animals. I shall repeat our view on the morality of fur farming. Fur farming is not consistent with a proper value and respect for animal life. Animal life should not be destroyed in the absence of a sufficient justification in terms of public benefit. Nor should animals be bred for such destruction in the absence of sufficient justification. That is the essence of our argument for applying morality to a Bill of this kind, and for justifying it under article 30 of EU regulations.1

2. Concern for the right treatment of animals has a long legislative history. Society has a clear stake in safeguarding animals from acts of cruelty. Human beings benefit from living in a society where cruelty is actively discouraged.

Some people have expressed surprise at the idea that our treatment of animals is a public moral issue. In fact, concern for the right treatment of animals has been the subject of legislative activity since 1800 when the first animal protection Bill (to abolish bull-baiting) was presented to the House of Commons. Since that time, there has been a growing awareness that there must be legal constraints on the uses to which animals can be put. There are now a wide range of measures regulating, or prohibiting, use in almost every sphere of human activity that affects animals. These include the use of animals in commercial trade, in farming, in research, in entertainment, and even as domestic companions. Far from being ethically regressive, there is an overwhelming acceptance that these developments are conducive to a civilised society, even the complete prohibition of practices (such as cock-fighting and bull-baiting) whose abolition was attended by no little controversy.

These developments have been supported philosophically by a growing sense that society has a clear stake in safeguarding animals from acts of cruelty. Not only is it wrong to make animals suffer needlessly, but also humans themselves benefit from living in a society where cruelty is actively discouraged, and punishable by law. More recently, a number of factors have stimulated a concern that this, now commonly accepted, position should be strengthened still further.

3. The evidence shows that it is unreasonable, even perfidious, to suppose that fur farming does not impose suffering on what are essentially wild animals kept in barren environments in which their behavioural needs are frustrated.

In the first place, many previous attempts at legislation defined cruelty in specific relation to physical acts, such as beating, kicking, hitting, stabbing, and so on. Such a definition reflected the common understanding of the time that animals could be harmed solely, or principally, by the infliction of adverse physical activity. We now know, however, that animals can be harmed, and sometimes severely, in a range of other ways, by — for example, their subjection to unsuitable environments where their basic behavioural needs are frustrated. These ‘harms of deprivation’ — as they have been called — cause as much, if not more, suffering to animals than the infliction of physical pain. Our understanding of animals — their mental states and behavioural needs — has necessitated a much wider appreciation of harm than was previously possible through simple appeals to physical cruelty.xxxFur farming is a case in point. Some people, unaware of the conditions on fur farms, assume that breeding animals for fur is like any other form of farming and poses no special welfare problems. There are good reasons for thinking otherwise. The UK Government’s own advisory body, the Farm Animal Welfare Council (FAWC), made public its disapproval of mink and fox farming in 1989. Its judgement makes clear the particular difficulties in subjecting essentially wild animals to intensive farming:

    Mink and fox have been bred in captivity for only about 50-60 generations and the Council is particularly concerned about the keeping of what are essentially wild animals in small barren cages. The Council believes that the systems employed in the farming of mink and fox do not satisfy some of the most basic criteria, which it has identified for protecting the welfare of farm animals. The current cages used for fur farming do not appear to provide appropriate comfort or shelter, and do not allow the animals freedom to display most normal patterns of behaviour.2

So severe were these strictures that the Council declined to issue a Welfare Code in respect of fur farming as it has done for other farming practices. The Council’s Chairman, Professor C. R. W. Spedding, made clear in a letter to the then Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Agriculture that ‘one of the objects of the (press) statement is to give a clear warning that FAWC does not see fur farming as an acceptable alternative enterprise as current practised. We have decided against drawing up a Welfare Code for mink and fox-farming to avoid giving it the stamp of approval which a Government-backed Welfare Code would imply’.3

This unusually strong position has been subsequently confirmed by further scientific research. A comprehensive review of the welfare of farmed mink in 1999, undertaken by Professor D. M. Broom (Professor of Animal Welfare at the University of Cambridge) and his colleague A.J. Nimon of the Department of Clinical Veterinary Medicine, concluded that "the high level and pervasiveness of sterotypies among farmed mink, and the incidence of fur chewing and even self-mutilation of tail tissue, suggest that farm mink welfare is not good. Stereotypies are associated with negative consequences such as slower kit growth, and higher levels of feed intake without an increase in growth.’4 A further study published in 2001, by the same authors in relation to the welfare of farmed foxes, concluded: ‘Research on fox welfare in relation to housing shows that farmed foxes have a considerable degree of fear, both of humans and in general, that the barrenness of the cages is a significant problem for the foxes, and that farmed foxes can have substantial reproduction problems. There is clear evidence that the welfare of farmed foxes in the typical bare, wire-mesh cages is very poor.’5

Such conclusions are confirmed by the recently published Report on the Welfare of Animals Kept for Fur Production by the Scientific Committee on Animal Health and Animal Welfare of the EU. Areas of concern with respect to the welfare of mink include, gastric ulcers, kidney abnormalities, tooth decay, self-mutilation, and stereotypies. Foxes were found to suffer from, inter alia, ‘abnormal behaviours, such as exaggerated fear responses, infanticide, stereotypies and pelt-biting.’6 While ethical questions were not included within the remit of the Committee, it concluded on welfare grounds alone that ‘minx and foxes generally suffer from being kept in cages because it limits their natural behaviour as wild animals.’7

In the light of all these findings, it is now unreasonable, even perfidious, to hold that fur farming does not impose suffering on animals. The issue is not whether direct, physical pain is inflicted upon such animals. It is rather that the confinement of wild creatures in barren, sterile enclosures, where their behavioural needs cannot be adequately met, inevitably causes suffering. Such forms of confinement cannot by their nature be made ‘animal-friendly’; no captive environment can adequately facilitate the full range of social and behavioural needs that are essential to the well-being of such creatures. The worst aspects of fur farming may conceivably be ameliorated by some environmental improvements, but no reform can eradicate the suffering inherent in such systems.

4. Growing ethical concern for animals has been reinforced by considerable intellectual work on the status of animals. There is an emerging consensus among ethicists for fundamental change.

The second factor, which has stimulated change, is the growing ethical sensitivity to issues of animal protection. This sensitivity has been reinforced by considerable ethical and philosophical work on the status of animals. It has been said that there has been more philosophical discussion of animals during the last twenty years than there was during the previous two thousand. Our use of animals in modern farming has been the subject of particularly strong criticism. To take just one example, Dr. David DeGrazia, in a comprehensive study maintains that ‘the institution of factory farming, which causes massive harm for trivial purposes, is ethically indefensible.’8 While not all ethicists agree on the precise limits that should be observed in our treatment of animals, there is an emerging consensus that we have special kinds of obligations to animals, and that a great deal of what we now do to them is morally unacceptable. There is, in short, a strong desire, among ethicists who have addressed this topic, for fundamental change.

5. There is a strong, rational case for animal protection. Animals make a special moral claim upon us because, inter alia, they are morally innocent, unable to give or withhold their consent, vocalise their needs, and because they are wholly vulnerable to human exploitation. These considerations make the infliction of suffering upon them not easier — but harder to justify.

It is important to spell out precisely why animals should be regarded as constituting a special moral case, or as having a special claim on our attention. It is not enough to simply say that the infliction of suffering is wrong; we need to provide an account of why it is so. When analysed impartially, we can see that there are a number of considerations that are peculiarly relevant to animals, and also to some vulnerable human subjects. For example:

    * Animals cannot give or withhold their consent. The point is obvious, but it has considerable moral significance. It is commonly accepted that ‘informed consent’ is required in advance by any person who wishes to over-ride the legitimate interests of another. The absence of this factor requires, at the very least, that we should exercise special care and thoughtfulness. The very (obvious) fact that animals cannot agree to the purposes to which they are put increases our responsibility and singles them out (along with others) as a special case.

    * Animals cannot represent or vocalise their own interests. Again the point is obvious, but it has serious moral implications. Individuals who cannot adequately represent themselves have to depend upon others to do so. The plight of animals – precisely because they cannot articulate their needs or represent their interests – should invoke an increased sense of obligation and mark them out as a special case.

    * Animals are morally innocent. Because animals are not moral agents with free will, they cannot — strictly speaking — be regarded as morally responsible. That granted, it follows that they can never (unlike, arguably, adult humans) deserve suffering, or be improved morally by it. Animals can never merit suffering; proper recognition of this consideration makes any infliction of suffering upon them particularly problematic.

    * Animals are vulnerable and defenceless. They are wholly, or almost wholly, within our power and entirely subject to our will. Except in rare circumstances, animals pose us no threat, constitute no risk to our life, and possess no means of offence or defence. Moral solicitude should properly relate to, and be commensurate with, the relative vulnerability of the subjects concerned.

The key point to note is that these considerations make the infliction of suffering and death on animals not easier — but harder to justify.

These considerations are all particularly relevant to the issue of fur farming. After all, in such farming we keep essentially wild animals captive and make them subservient to our purposes; we frustrate their basic behavioural needs, and we kill them in a frequently inhumane way. We do all this even though they have not harmed us and even though they do not pose any threat to our life or well-being. They cannot ‘assent’ to their maltreatment, or even vocalise their own interests. Theirs is a state of moral innocence; they are without the means of defence, and are wholly vulnerable. In short: we have made them entirely dependent upon us; they deserve, as a matter of justice, special moral solicitude.

Perhaps the best analogy is the special solicitude now rightly extended to weaker members of the human community, for example, newly born infants or young children. It is, inter alia, their sheer vulnerability, their inability to articulate their needs, and their moral innocence, that compels us to insist that they be treated with special care and protected from exploitation. But, if this argument is sound, it applies as much, if not more, to sentient mammals as well.

6. Law has a proper role in defending the weak and the vulnerable from exploitation, including animals and children.

The third factor that has stimulated change is the recognition that law has a specific role in protecting the weak and the vulnerable. It is worth noting that the concern for the alleviation of animal suffering that emerged in the nineteenth century was part of a broader ‘humanitarian movement’ equally concerned for the protection of children from abuse and cruelty, the abolition of slavery, the establishing of minimum working conditions, and the emancipation of women. Many of the key movers for animal protection — William Wilberforce, Lord Shaftesbury, Fowell Buxton — to take only three examples — were prominent in all these campaigns. They pioneered the view that concern for the vulnerable and defenceless was a moral, specifically religious, duty. From this starting point, and from that day on, we have continued to welcome a range of legislative measures that grant specific protection to those who are easily abused and exploited. The notion then that there is a legitimate social or public interest in limiting animal suffering has a long provenance. There is a benevolent motivation behind socially progressive legislation that some, perhaps many, would hold to be the proper function of law, namely to defend the weak and defenceless.

7. There is increasing evidence of a link between the abuse of animals and other forms of violence, notably against women and children. It is an increasingly viable assumption that a world in which abuse to animals goes unchecked is bound to be a less morally safe world for human beings.

But the case for including animals within this legislative advance is even stronger today. It is buttressed by the increasing empirical evidence of a link between abuse and cruelty to animals, and other forms of violence, notably against women and children. In the past, the connection, if any, was largely rhetorical. Early reformers sensed that there must be a connection, and assumed that it was so. Today, however, heavyweight publications are beginning to marshal the evidence. To take just one example, Frank R. Ascione and Phil Arkow in their collection, Child Abuse, Domestic Violence and Animal Abuse (the result of a multidisciplinary symposium of people professionally concerned with social work, child protection, domestic violence, as well as animal protection) maintain that: ‘Violence directed against animals is often a coercion device and an early indicator of violence that may escalate in range and severity against other victims.’9 Much has yet to be done to explore and document that connection, but that there is a link is increasingly difficult to deny. It is an increasingly viable assumption that a world in which abuse to animals goes unchecked is bound to be a less morally safe world for human beings.

Such awareness should inform, inter alia, legislative attempts to limit the infliction of suffering on animals. The need for reform extends not only to the protection of domestic species, but also to ‘managed’ species subject to commerce and exploitation. As already noted, the institutionalised use of animals in modern farming has become a major area of concern. An increasing number of people want to move towards a society in which commercial institutions do not routinely and habitually abuse animals.

8. Those who regard the infliction of suffering on animals as intrinsically objectionable rightly oppose fur farming. In their view, there are certain acts against vulnerable subjects that are so morally outrageous that they can never be morally licit.

We now need to address more precisely the moral issue involved in fur farming. Some people hold that the infliction of suffering on animals is intrinsically objectionable, and is never morally justifiable. This position deserves much more consideration than is usually given to it. The considerations outlined above show that there are good rational grounds for supposing that certain kinds of activity — directed against vulnerable subjects — are so morally outrageous that they ought never to be countenanced whatever the circumstances. The infliction of prolonged suffering on captive creatures is, from this perspective, intrinsically evil. No circumstances, benefits, or compensating factors, can ever remove the fundamental offence, or render the practices morally licit.

9. Fur farming is, however, also unacceptable to those who hold that the infliction of suffering can sometimes be justified. Fur farming fails a basic test of moral necessity. It is wholly unjustifiable to subject animals to prolonged suffering for trivial ends, such as fur coats or fashion accessories. Fur is a non-essential luxury item.

Others hold that suffering can sometimes, perhaps rarely, be justified if it can be shown to be necessary, or if there is sufficient benefit, and also if the end result cannot be achieved by other means. For the latter, the issue turns on whether there is sufficient moral necessity, or benefit, involved in fur farming to justify its continuance.

In ethical terms, to show that something is necessary requires more than a simple appeal to what is fashionable, or even desirable. Human wants do not by themselves constitute moral necessity. It has to be shown that the good procured is essential, and that no alternative means are available. When viewed from this perspective, it can be seen immediately that fur farming fails a basic moral test. The wearing of fur — whilst conceivably pleasant, fashionable, or even desirable — cannot reasonably be defined as essential. Fur is at best a luxury item. When weighed in terms of a cost/benefit analysis, the case fails — and spectacularly so. It is obviously unjustifiable to inflict suffering on animals for non-essential, indeed trivial, ends. In that sense, Eliott Morley was right to insist that animals should not be ‘bred for such destruction in the absence of sufficient justification’.’Unsurprisingly, perhaps, supporters of fur farming fail to address the central moral issue, and frequently provide exaggerated claims for the ‘necessity’ of fur. For example, Richard D. North accepts that fur is a luxury item and still defends it. He maintains that ‘There is a powerful case to be made for the idea that the need for luxury is one of the most fundamental human urges, as it is one of the most powerful well-springs of activity in the whole animal kingdom’. He continues:

    Biologists have long understood a Darwinian explanation for the apparent excesses of display indulged in by animals such as the peacock. Sexual attractiveness that involves a conspicuous and costly display demonstrates a male’s ability to satisfy to an extraordinary degree the capacity to fulfil his basic needs.10

Even allowing for the correctness of North’s interpretation of animal behaviour, no human being has a ‘basic need’ for adornment articles, such as fur coats or fashion accessories. Even if they could be shown to be a component in fulfilling sexual desire, the case would still have to be made that such wants (as distinct from needs) could not be met through alternative means. To say the least, the argument is frivolous in the context of animal suffering.

Before we conclude, there are six objections, which should be briefly addressed.

10. It is sometimes argued that fur farming is justifiable because it is consistent with religious notions that animals can be used for human benefit. But Judaism, Christianity, and Islam have never held that our use of animals should be illimitable or without moral constraint.

The first objection is that fur farming is consistent with commonly held religious notions that animals have a subordinate place to humans and that they are made for human use. This objection deserves some scrutiny. Whilst it is true that Judaism, Christianity, and Islam have held at some points in their history that some use of animals is justifiable, none of them have ever supposed that our use of animals should be illimitable or without moral constraint. Within Judaism, there is a strong, biblically-grounded, injunction against cruelty to animals, and there are authoritative voices within Judaism against killing for pleasure or adornment articles, such as fur.11 Islam, too, has its own tradition of concern for animals originating in the sayings of the Prophet Muhammad who condemned those who were cruel to dogs and birds.12 And within Christianity, there are growing signs of a vocal opposition to animal abuse, and especially the killing of animals for fur. In 1992, for example, forty-one Anglican bishops (including two archbishops) signed a statement refusing to support or wear fur on moral and theological grounds.13

11. The claim that banning fur farming is an infringement of legitimate freedom is untenable; many previous cruelties (now illegal) have been defended on that basis. There can be no civil right to be cruel.

The idea that religious authorities can be uncritically utilised in this debate in defence of fur farming should therefore be jettisoned. Indeed, there are sufficiently positive grounds within almost all religious traditions to oppose the utilisation of animals for trivial purposes, such as luxury or adornment. These grounds include: the intrinsic value of sentient creatures made by God; the responsibility of humans as stewards and guardians of God’s creation, and, not least of all, a near-unanimous rejection of the deliberate infliction of suffering as an abuse of our power over animals. It is worth noting that the modern movement for the protection of animals, specifically the inception of the world’s first national animal welfare society, the SPCA (as it then was) in 1824, owed a great deal to its Christian and Jewish founders, Arthur Broome and Lewis Gompertz.

The second objection is that banning fur farming is a denial of individual freedom. In that sense, the statement is self-evidently true. The legal prohibition of any practice does of course limit individual freedom. But what has to be shown, morally, is that the outlawing of fur farming constitutes an unwarranted or unjustifiable invasion of individual liberty. It should be pointed out that right from the outset animal protectionists have had to suffer the use of this argument to prevent the prohibition of even the grossest acts of cruelty. For example, commenting on the failure of the first Bill to outlaw bull-baiting in 1800, The Times was adamant that the attempt was misconceived since ‘whatever meddles with private personal disposition of a man’s time is tyranny direct.’14

The current attempt to cast animal protectionists in the guise of anti-civil libertarians misses the moral point that liberty to inflict unnecessary suffering, even and especially to animals, violates civilised values and renders weaker humans also vulnerable. For if the argument is logically sound, there are no good reasons for stopping at animals. There can be no civil right to be cruel.

The third objection is that banning fur farming is inconsistent when there are greater cruelties that need to be addressed. Whether there are greater cruelties than the infliction of prolonged suffering on wild animals is debatable. But, even allowing for that, the argument also has a poor pedigree. The same was also said, inter alia, about those who opposed bull-baiting, cock-fighting, and even those who sought protection for domestic cattle. If one took the view that all welfare legislation for humans or animals had to be rigorously consistent (in the sense of encompassing all possible abuses) before any single law was enacted, we should have logically opposed the enactment of all socially progressive legislation since 1800.

The fact is that animal protection legislation has, of necessity, to be a gradual piece-meal affair depending as it does on popular, democratic support for its enactment. Each case has to be judged on its merits, the relevant arguments advanced, and popular support marshalled. If, in this process, legislation is sometimes inconsistent then it has to be recognised that all legislation —for both human and animal protection — itself depends upon public opinion, which is itself not always consistent. In a democratic society, the risk of inconsistency has to be acknowledged; the alternative (in the case of humans as well as animals) is not even to begin the process because of the inevitable risk of inconsistency.

12. It is sometimes held that Member States should wait for the European Commission to act on issues of animal welfare. In fact, under the 1999 protocol, Member States already have the responsibility to ‘fully consider animal welfare’ as well as the freedom to initiate appropriate legislation. One Commissioner has publicly stated that some Member States are failing to comply with even their existing responsibilities.

The fourth objection is that responsibility for animal welfare should rest with the European Commission rather than Member States. It should be noted, however, that that objection is not endorsed by relevant Commissioner, David Byrne. In a remarkably frank statement, he describes this attitude as ‘passing the buck’, and continues: ‘Speaking as the European Commissioner with responsibility for key areas of public concern, such as health and consumer protection and food safety, I am always prepared to accept my responsibilities. But, equally, I insist on ensuring that others should not hide behind others in evading their responsibilities.’

His reasoning deserves to be read at length:

    The public should be in a position where they can be confident that animals are treated humanely. And that their elected representatives and the public authorities take the issue seriously. But the question obviously arises, which authorities? Is it, for example, the role of the European Commission to ensure that animals are treated humanely? I will not duck the issue. The Commission role relates only to its legal powers and competence. We cannot ensure that animals are humanely treated throughout the EU. For a number of reasons – we do not have the resources, the powers or the legitimacy to do so.

And he underlines the point in even more stark language:

    Again and again, often in the area of animal welfare, Member States are found to be at fault in not meeting acceptable standards … I am growing increasingly weary at the repeated reports of my officials on continued non-respect of Community provisions on animal welfare.15

The message then seems overwhelmingly clear. Not only can Member States act, they actually have a responsibility to do so. Under the 1999 protocol they already have a responsibility to ‘fully consider animal welfare’ as well as freedom to initiate appropriate legislation. In fact, the EU has not the powers even to enforce existing regulations, which are inadequately respected by some Member States. In the light of these frank admissions, the case for Member States to act positively on their own is overwhelming. To wait for the Commission to act on a European-wide basis is — in the words of Commissioner Byrne, to ‘pass the buck’.

The fifth objection is that the notion of ‘public morality’ is misconceived, even, in the colourful language of one Westminster M.P., ‘a truly terrifying concept.’16 In fact, as we have shown, the development of animal protection — as well as the protection of weaker human subjects — has often entailed an appeal to social values. We accept, however, that morality cannot be decided by opinion polls. Majorities are not always right, and popular sensitivities can be misguided. But such considerations should not blind us to the fact that animal protection legislation has always — in a democratic society — depended, in the last resort, on popular support.

13. In a democratic society, the law should properly reflect our changed ethical perception of animals and, specifically, the public’s long-standing opposition to fur farming.

Neither is such an appreciation reprehensible. In a changing world with (hopefully) developing moral sensitivities, it follows that law should itself reflect changed moral perceptions. Opinion polls carried out in the UK have consistently shown that 75 to 76 per cent of the population opposed to fur farming. MORI polls conducted in 1996 and 1997, for instance, both showed that 76 per cent supported an outright ban. The movement for the protection of animals needs public support in order to achieve legislative change. Law is the outward and visible sign of a changed, or changing, moral consensus. Given such a longstanding consensus in a democratic society, it behoves those who wish to frustrate the majority view to provide convincing argument.

The final objection is that law, even if justifiable in terms of preventing abuses, should be used sparingly, especially when abolitionist legislation is proposed. The argument may be generally sound. Not everything that the public dislikes should be made illegal. Arguments for prohibition or abolition have to be well made. But even if arguments for prohibition of existing practices should be treated with caution, it does not follow that such arguments cannot in fact be made, and reasonably so. In our view, fur farming is a case in point. Some systems of abuse cannot be reformed; their worst aspects may be ameliorated through regulation, but they constitute a moral offence that is so grave and so deep that abolition is the only proper course of action.16

14. There is an overwhelming case for the abolition of fur farming on ethical grounds. We urg all EU countries to give urgent consideration to such legislation on the ground of public morality.

We believe that fur farming should be done away with. Nothing morally essential is lost thereby, and much gained. To fail to legislate would mean turning our backs on the long history of progressive anti-cruelty legislation. It would signal that we have in effect given up on the struggle to eliminate unjustifiable suffering in our society. It would constitute a worrying precedent that commercial concerns are immune from public moral sensibility. It would be to act in ignorance of the knowledge that we have acquired about the sentiency and behavioural complexity of other creatures with whom we share the earth. In short: a system of farming that inherently exposes animals to high levels of suffering for trivial ends cries out for abolitionist legislation. We urge Member States of the EU to give this matter their urgent attention.

1. Eliott Morley, HANSARD (15 May 2000) (London: HMSO, 2000) Vol. 350, No. 99, p. 76; see also pp. 40-1.

2. ‘Farm Animal Welfare Council Disapproves of Mink and Fox farming’, Press Notice, 4 April 1989, p. 1.

3. Letter to the Parliamentary Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food from Professor C. R. W. Spedding, Chairman of the Farm Animal Welfare Council, 31 March 1989.

4. A. J. Nimon and D. M. Broom, ‘The Welfare of Farmed Mink (Mustela Vison) in Relation to Housing and Management: A Review,’Animal Welfare, 1999, Vol. 8, p. 222. See also the discussion, C. M. Vinke, ‘Some Comments on the Review of Nimon and Broom on the Welfare of Farmed Mink’, ANIMAL WELFARE, 2001, Vol. 10, pp. 315-323, and ‘Response to Vinke’s Short Communication: Comments on Mink Needs and Welfare Indicators’, same issue, pp. 325-326.

5. A. J. Nimon and D. M. Broom, ‘The Welfare of Farmed Foxes Vulpes Vulpes and Alopex Lagopus in Relation to Housing and Management: A Review,’Animal Welfare, 2001, Vol. 8, pp. 241-2.

6. Scientific Committee on Animal Health and Animal Welfare, The Welfare of Animals Kept for Fur Production (Health and Consumer Protection Directorate-General, European Commission), adopted 12-13 December, 2001, p. 185.

7. EU Press Release on Fur Farming, 19 December, 2001.

8. David DeGrazia, Taking Animals Seriously: Mental Life and Moral Status (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996) p. 284.

9. Frank R. Ascione and Phil Arkow (eds) Child Abuse, Domestic Violence, and Animal Abuse (West Lafayette, Indiana: Purdue University Press, 1999) Preface, p. xvii.

10. Richard D. North, Fur and Freedom: In Defence of the Fur Trade (London: The Environment Unit, Institute of Economic Affairs, 2000) p. 9.

11. See, for example, Andrew Linzey and Dan Cohn-Sherbok, After Noah (London: Mowbray/Continuum, 1997), especially pp. 35-61. The book gives an account of the resources within the Jewish and Christian traditions for a positive view of animals.

12. See, Neal Robinson (ed and trans), The Sayings of Muhammad (London: Duckworth, 1991), pp. 48-9.

13. Andrew Linzey (ed), Cruelty and Christian Conscience; Bishops Say No to Fur (London: Lynx Educational Trust, 1992). The Foreword is written by the Archbishop of Wales.

14. The Times (editorial), 25 April, 1800, cited in A. W. Moss, The Valiant Crusade: The History of the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (London: Cassell, 1961) p. 14.

15. Commissioner David Byrne, Address to the Conference of Ethics and Animal Welfare, Stockholm, 29 May, 2001; my emphases.

16. Hansard, ibid, p. 64.

Acknowledgement
Special thanks to Jean Nakos of Belgium for his generous help in the production of this statement.

© Copyright, Andrew Linzey, 2002.Dr. Michael J. Almeida


The paper was written by the Revd Professor Andrew Linzey. Below are the names of individuals who wish to be associated with it. Institutional affiliations are given for the purpose of identification only. All individuals sign in their personal capacity.

Dr. Michael J. Almeida
Associate Professor of Philosophy
The University of Texas at San Antonio, San Antonio, Texas, USA.
Author of Imperceptible Harms and Benefits (Library Of Ethics And Applied Philosophy Volume 8) (Library Of Ethics And Applied Philosophy Volume 8) (ed) (2000).

Phil Arkow
Instructor, Animal Assisted Therapy
Camden County College, Stratford, New Jersey, USA
Author of Child Abuse, Domestic Violence, and Animal Abuse: Linking the Circles of Compassion for Prevention and Intervention (co-ed) (1999); Breaking the Cycles of Violence: A Practical Guide (1995); Humane Education: An Historical Perspective (1992), Pet Therapy (1998), and Loving Bond: Companion Animals in the Helping Professions (1986).

Dr. Ara Paul Barsam
Visiting Professor
Faculty of Theology, Yerevan State University, Armenia
Articles include: "Albert Schweitzer" and "St. Francis of Assisi" in J. A. Palmer (ed) Fifty Key Thinkers on the Environment (2001), "Buddhist Attitudes to Animals" in the Animal World Encyclopaedia (2002), and "Cloning of Animals in Genetic Research" in the Encyclopaedia of the Human Genome (forthcoming).

Dr. Yvan Beck
President of Planet Life RNS (Gathering for a New Society), Belgium
Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, University of Liege, Belgium (1981) and Specialised Studies Diploma in the Environment, University of Brussels (1994).
Author of The Animals, the Man and the Life (in French) (1982), and joint author (with Gauthier Chapelle, Yvon Godefroid and Gerard Lippert) Freedom for the Dolphins (in French) (2000).

Dr. Marc Bekoff
Professor of Biology, University of Colorado at Boulder USA, also a Fellow of the Animal Behaviour Society and a former Guggenheim Fellow.
Author of (with Colin Allen) Species of Mind: The Philosophy and Biology of Cognitive Ethology (1997), Nature’s Purposes: Analyses of Function and Design in Biology (co-ed) (1998), Animal Play : Evolutionary, Comparative and Ecological Perspectives (co-ed) (1998), Encyclopaedia of Animal Rights and Animal Welfare (ed) (1998), (with Jim Carrier) Nature’s Life Lessons (1996), The Smile of a Dolphin : Remarkable Accounts of Animal Emotions (2000), The Cognitive Animal (joint ed) (2002), Minding Animals: Awareness, Emotions, and Heart (2002), and (with Jane Goodall) The Ten Trusts: What We Must Do to Care for The Animals We Love (2002).

Dr. John Berkman
Visiting Scholar
Duke Institute on Care at the End of Life
and Visiting Assistant Professor, The Divinity School, Duke University, North Carolina, USA
Articles include (with Stanley Hauerwas) "A Trinitarian Theology of the ‘Chief End’ of ‘All Flesh’ " in Charles Pinches and Jay B. McDaniel (eds) Good News for Animals? (1993); "Is the Consistent Ethic of Life Consistent without a Concern for Animals?" in Andrew Linzey and Dorothy Yamamoto (eds) Animals on the Agenda (1998), and "Prophetically Pro-Life: John Paul II’s Gospel of Life and Evangelical Concern for Animals," Josephinum Journal of Theology, Vol. 6, No. 1 (Winter/Spring 1999).

Dr. Mark Bernstein
Professor of Philosophy, The University of Texas at San Antonio
San Antonio, Texas, USA
Author of Fatalism (1992) and On Moral Considerability: An Essay on Who Morally Matters (1998).

Dr. Hilary Bok
Henry R. Luce Professor of Bioethics and Moral and Political Theory
Department of Philosophy, John Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland, USA
Author of Freedom and Responsibility (1998) and numerous articles including "Why Cloning Pets is Wrong", forthcoming in the Journal of Applied Animal Welfare Science.

Dr. Dirk Boon
Professor of Law
Faculty of Law, University of Utrecht, The Netherlands
Author of Animals and Law in the Netherlands (in Dutch) (1983); Animal Welfare Law (in Dutch) (1985), and Animal Welfare Legislation (ed) (in Dutch) (1999).

Dr. Peter Brang
Professor of Slavonic Philology (1961-1990)
Faculty of Philosophy, University of Zurich, Switzerland
Author of A Cultural History of Vegetarianism in Russia (in German) (2000).

Simon Brooman
Senior Lecturer in Animal Rights and Law
School of Law, Liverpool John Moores University, Liverpool, England
Co-author of Law Relating To Animals (1997).

Dr. Florence Burgat
Senior Researcher
National Institute of Agronomic Research (INRA), Ivry-sur-Seine, France
Author of Butcher’s Animals (in French) (1995), Animal Welfare (in French) (1997), The Animal, My Neighbour (in French) (1997) (awarded a prize by the French Academy), and (edited with R. Dantzer) Do Animals Have a Right to Welfare? (in French) (2001).

Dr. Gauthier Chapelle
Agriculture Engineer (University of Louvain, 1991),
PhD in Biology (University of Louvain, 2001), and Scientific collaborator at the Royal Belgian Institute for Natural Sciences
Joint author (with Yvan Beck, Yvon Godefroid and Gerard Lippert) of Freedom for the Dolphins (in French) (2000), and many scientific articles including (with L. Peck) "Polar Gigantism dictated by oxygen availability", Nature, 339 (1999), and (with others) "Pelagic birds observed during CS-EASIZ cruise from RV ‘Polarstern,’" Berichte zur Polarforschung, 249 (1997).

Dr. Georges Chapouthier
Director of Research
"Vulnerability, Adaptation, Psychopathology," National Centre of Scientific Research, Hospital Pitie-Salpetriere, Paris, France
Author of In the Good Will of Man, the Animal (in French) (1990), The Man, This Ape in Mosaic (in French) (2001) and co-editor (with J. C. Nouet) The Universal Declaration of Animal Rights: Comments and Intentions (in English) (1998).

Dr. Stephen R. L. Clark
Professor of Philosophy
Department of Philosophy, University of Liverpool, England
Author of The Moral Status of Animals (1977), The Nature of the Beast: Are Animals Moral? (1982), How to Think About the Earth: Philosophical and Theological Models for Ecology (1993), Animals and Their Moral Standing (1997), and Biology and Christian Ethics (2000).

Dr. David Clough
Tutor in Ethics
St. John’s College, Durham, England

Dr. Priscilla Cohn
Emeritus Professor of Philosophy, Abington College, Penn State University, Philadelphia, USA
Author of Transparencies: Philosophical Essays in Honour of J. Ferrater Mora (ed) (1981), Applied Ethics: From Abortion to Violence (with J. Ferrater Mora) (eight ed, 1996) (in Spanish), Contraception in Wildlife: Book One (co-ed) (1996), and Ethics and Wildlife (ed) (1999).

Dr. Roger Crisp
Uehiro Fellow and Tutor in Philosophy
St. Anne’s College, Oxford, England
Author of How Should One Live?: Essays on the Virtues (ed) (1996), and Mill on Utilitarianism (1997).

Dr. David DeGrazia
Associate Professor of Philosophy
George Washington University, also Faculty Affiliate, Kennedy Institute of Ethics, Georgetown University, Washington D.C. USA
Author of Taking Animals Seriously : Mental Life and Moral Status (1996), and Animal Rights: A Very Short Introduction (2002).

Deborah H. Fouts, M.S.
Co-Director of the Chimpanzee and Human Communication Institute
Central Washington University, Vice-President of the Friends of Washoe
Ellensburg, Washington, USA

Dr. Roger S. Fouts
Distinguished Research Professor
Professor of Psychology
Co-Director of the Chimpanzee and Human Communication Institute
Central Washington University, President of the Friends of Washoe
Ellensburg, Washington, USA
Author of (with Stephen Mills) Next of Kin: My Conversations with Chimpanzees (1997).

Dr. Erica Fudge
Senior Lecturer in English Literary Studies
School of Arts, University of Middlesex, England
Author of Perceiving Animals: Humans and Beasts in Early Modern English Culture (2000), At the Borders of the Human: Beasts, Bodies and Natural Philosophy in the Early Modern Period (co-ed) (1999), and Animal (forthcoming).

Dr. Robert Garner
Reader in Politics and Head of the Department of Politics, University of Leicester, England
Author of Animals, Politics, and Morality (1993), with Richard Kelly) British Political Parties Today (1993), Environmental Politics (1996), Animal Rights: The Changing Debate (ed) (1996), and Political Animals: Animal Protection Politics in Britain and the United States (1998).

Dr. John P. Gluck
Professor of Psychology
Director, Research Ethics Service Project, University of New Mexico,
Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA
Author of (with F. Barbara Orlans et al) The Humane Use of Animals: Case Studies in Ethical Choice (1998), and first author (with Tony DiPasquale and F. Barbara Orlans) (eds) Applied Ethics in Animal Research: Philosophy, Regulation, and Laboratory Applications (2002).

Dr. A. C. Grayling
Reader in Philosophy
Birkbeck College, University of London, England
Author of An Introduction to Philosophical Logic (third edition, 1998), The Refutation of Scepticism (1985), Philosophy 1: A Guide Through the Subject (as ed) (1997), Moral Values (1998), Philosophy 2: Further Through the Subject (as ed) (1998), The Meaning of Things: Applying Philosophy to Life (2001), The Reason of Things: Living with Philosophy (2002), The Good (forthcoming 2003).

Dr. F. Jan Grommers
Emeritus Professor of Human-Animal Relations
Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Utrecht, The Netherlands

Dr. Stanley Hauerwas
Gilbert T. Rowe Professor of Theological Ethics
The Divinity School, Duke University, North Carolina, USA
Author of With the Grain of the Universe: The Church’s Witness and Natural Theology (2001), A Better Hope: Resources for a Church Confronting Capitalism, Democracy, and Postmodernity (2000), and A Better Hope: Resources for a Church Confronting Capitalism, Democracy, and Postmodernity (1999).

Dr. Marcel Hebbelinck
Emeritus Professor of Human Biometrics, Nutrition, Health and Fitness
Free University of Brussels, Belgium; also, Fulbright Alumnus, and former UNESCO Consultant
Author Human Biometrics (in Dutch) (1995), and Nutritional Aspects of Health and Fitness (in Dutch) (1999), and numerous articles including, (with D. De Ridder) "The Animal/Human Relationship in Ethical Vegetarianism" in G. Cazaux (ed), Man and Other Animals (in Dutch) (2001).

Dr. Harold Herzog
Professor of Psychology
Western Carolina University, Cullowhee, North Carolina, USA

Dr. Hilda Kean
Tutor in History
Ruskin College, Oxford, England
Author of Animal Rights: Political and Social Change in Britain Since 1800 (2000).

Sister Marie-Henry Keane, OP, DTh
Prioress General
Dominican Congregation of Bushey Heath, England, Formerly Associate Professor
Department of Systematic Theology and Theological Ethics, University of South Africa, President the Dominican Association of Britain and Ireland, Executive Member of the Dominican Sisters International
Co-author of Word and Life (1981), The Meaning of History (co-author) (1990), and articles including, "Towards an Authentic and Transforming Spirituality for Women in South Africa" in Women Hold Up The Sky (1991), and "Women in the Theological Anthropology of the Early Fathers" in the Journal of Theology for Southern Africa (1988), and "A Theology and Spirituality of Divine and Human Compassion with Special Reference to Stewardship of the Earth" (1998).

Dr. Steven G. Kellman
Professor of Comparative Literature
The University of Texas at San Antonio, San Antonio, Texas, USA
Author of The Translingual Imagination (2000), and numerous articles, including "Fish, Flesh and Foul: the Anti-Vegetarian Animus" in The American Scholar, Vol. 69, No. 4, Autumn 2000, and "The Birth of a Batterer: Isaac Babel’s ‘My First Goose’", in Glynis Carr (ed) New Essays in Ecofeminist Literary Theory (2000).

Dr. Brian Klug
Senior Research Fellow in Philosophy
St. Benet’s Hall, Oxford, England and Associate Professor of Philosophy, Saint Xavier University, Chicago, USA. Author of Ethics, Value and Reality: Selected Papers of Aurel Kolnai (co-ed) (1977), Children As Equals: Exploring the Rights of the Child (co-ed) (2002), and contributions to Factory Farming: The Experiment That Failed (1987), Judaism and Animal Rights: Classical and Contemporary Responses (1992), and Animals on the Agenda: Questions About Animals for Theology and Ethics (1998).

Dr. Tim Lang
Professor of Food Policy
Centre for Food Policy, Wolfson Institute of Health Sciences, Thames Valley University, England
Also, Fellow of the Faculty of Public Health of the Royal Colleges of Physicians.

Dr. Claus Leitzmann
Professor of Nutrition
Institute of Nutrition, University of Giessen, Germany
Author of various papers on alternative nutrition, including "Vegetarian Nutrition" (1996 and 1998), "Alternative Nutrition" (1999), and "Vegetarianism" (2001).

Dr. Chien-hui Li
Research Fellow in History
Wolfson College, Cambridge, England
Author of "A Union of Christianity, Humanity, and Philanthropy: The Christian Tradition and the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals in Nineteenth-Century England", Society and Animals (2000).

The Revd. Dr. Andrew Linzey
Senior Research Fellow in Theology and Animals
Blackfriars Hall, Oxford, England and Honorary Professor, University of Birmingham, and Special Professor, Saint Xavier University, Chicago
Author of Animal Rights: A Christian Assessment of Man's Treatment of Animals (1976) Christianity and the Rights of Animals (1987), Animals and Christianity: A Book of Readings
(co-ed) (1989), Political Theory and Animal Rights (1994), (with Dan Cohn-Sherbok) After Noah: Animals and the Liberation of Theology (1997), Animals on the Agenda: Questions About Animals for Theology and Ethics (co-ed) (1998), Animal Gospel (1999), and Animal Rites: Liturgies of Animal Care (1999).

The Rt. Revd. Richard Llewellin
Bishop at Lambeth, England

Dr. Bonnie Lyons
Professor of English
The University of Texas at San Antonio, San Antonio, Texas, USA

The Revd. Dr. Adrian Anthony McFarlane
Professor of Philosophy
Margaret B. Bunn Distinguished Teacher, Hartwick College, Oneonta, New York, USA
Also Visiting Professor, Wooster College, Ohio (1993), Visiting Scholar, Mansfield College, Oxford (1994) and Senior Visiting Fellow, Mansfield College, Oxford (1999).
Author of A Grammar of Fear and Evil: A Husserlian-Wittgensteinian Hermeneutic (Studies in European Thought, Vol 9) (1996) and Chanting Down Babylon: The Rastafari Reader (1998).

Dr. Thillayvel Naidoo
Retired Senior Lecturer in Religious Studies
Department of Science of Religion, University of Durban-Westville, South Africa
Author of The Arya Samaj Movement in South Africa (1992), contributor to Religion and Social Transformation in Southern Africa (1999), and many articles, including "Proselytism in Religion – Specific Perspective", Emory International Law Review (September 2000).

Nathan Nobis
Instructor in Philosophy
Department of Philosophy, University of Rochester, Rochester, New York, USA
Articles include, "Vegetarianism and Virtue: Does Consequentialism Demand Too Little?" in Social Theory and Practice: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal of Social Philosophy (forthcoming), and "Animal Dissection and Evidence-Based Life-Science and Health Professions Education: A Response to Jonathan Balcombe’s Commentators" (forthcoming).

Dr. Alastair Norcross
William Edward Easterwood Professor of Philosophy
Department of Philosophy. South Methodist University, Dallas, Texas, USA
Author of Killing and Letting Die (co-ed) (second ed., 1994), and numerous articles, including "Contractualism and the Ethical Status of Animals", The Southwest Philosophy Review, Vol. 17, No. 1, January 2001; "Three Approaches to the Ethical Status of Animals", The Maguire Centre for Ethics and Public Responsibility, Occasional Lecture Series, 2000, and "Good and Bad Actions", The Philosophical Review, Vol. 106, No. 1, January 1997.

Dr. Michael S. Northcott
Reader in Christian Ethics
Faculty of Divinity, University of Edinburgh, Scotland
Author of
The Environment and Christian Ethics (1996) and Life After Debt: Christianity and Global Justice

Dr. Jean-Claude Nouet
Professor of Medicine
University Pierre & Marie Curie, Paris, France
Co-author of The Universal Declaration of Animal Rights (1978).

The Revd. Glen O’Brien
Academic Dean and
Dean of the School of Theology, Kingsley College, Melbourne, Australia

Dr. F. Barbara Orlans
University Affiliate
Kennedy Institute of Ethics, Georgetown University, Washington D.C. USA
Author of In the Name of Science: Issues in Responsible Animal Experimentation (1993), The Human Use of Animals: Case Studies in Ethical Choice (1998), and Animal Care (1978).

Professor J. A. Palmer
Vice-President
National Association for Environmental Education, England
Author of
Fifty Key Thinkers on the Environment (Fifty Key Thinkers) (ed) (2001) and
Environmental Education in the 21st Century: Theory, Practice, Progress and Promise (1998).

Dr. Valerio Pocar
Full Professor of the Sociology of Law
Faculty of Law, University of Milano-Bicocca, Italy
Author of Non-Human Animals: Towards a Sociology of Rights (in Italian) (1998).

Dr. James Rachels
Professor of Philosophy
University of Alabama at Birmingham, USA.
Author of Created from Animals: The Moral Implications of Darwinism (1990).

Mike Radford
Lecturer in Law, University of Aberdeen, Scotland
Author of Animal Welfare Law in Britain: Regulation and Responsibility (2001).

Dr. Bernard E. Rollin
University Distinguished Professor
Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado, USA
Author of Animal Rights & Human Morality (1981 and second edition, 1992); The Unheeded Cry: Animal Consciousness, Animal Pain, & Science (1989 and second edition, 1998), Farm Animal Welfare: School, Bioethical, and Research Issues (1995), and An Introduction to Veterinary Medical Ethics: Theory and Cases (1999).

Dr. Ornella Li Rosi
Environmental Researcher
National Agency for Energy, Environmental and New Technology (ENEA), Rome, Italy
Author of Mondofarmaco – Drug-World: An Investigation into the World of Drugs Without Fear or Prejudice (in Italian) (1998).

Dr. Mark Rowlands
Lecturer in Philosophy
Department of Philosophy, University College, Cork, Ireland
Author of Animal Rights: A Philosophical Defence (1998), The Environmental Crisis: Understanding the Value of Nature (2000), and Animals Like Us (2002).

Dr. Steve F. Sapontzis
Professor Emeritus of Philosophy
California State University, Hayward, California, USA
President, Hayward Friends of Animals Humane Society.
Co-founder and past editor, Between the Species: A Journal of Ethics.
Author of Morals, Reason and Animals (1987 and 1992).

Dr. Timothy Sprigge
Professor Emeritus (Logic and Metaphysics)
University of Edinburgh, Scotland
Author of The Rational Foundations of Ethics (The Problems of Philosophy: Their Past & Present) (1987), and numerous articles including "Respect for the Non-Human" in T. D. J. Chappell (ed), The Philosophy of the Environment (1997).

Dr. Elizabeth Stuart
Professor of Christian Theology
King Alfred’s College, Winchester, England
Author of Introducing Body Theology (Feminist Theology Series) (1998), People of Passion: What the Churches Teach about Sex (1997), and Christian Perspectives on Sexuality and Gender (1996).

Dr. Gianni Tamino
Professor of Biology
Department of Biology, University of Padua, Italy
Author of The Genetic Cross-Roads (in Italian) (2001).

Dr. Josep-Maria Terricabras
Professor of Philosophy
University of Girona, Spain
Author of Ethics and Freedom (in Spanish) (1983), Doing Philosophy Today (in Spanish) (1988), Communication (in Spanish) (1996), Dare to Think (in Spanish) (1998), and Reasons and Platitudes (in Spanish) (2001).

The Rt. Revd. Dr. Dominic Walker
Bishop of Reading, England

Dr. Stephen H. Webb
Associate Professor of Religion and Philosophy
Wabash College, Crawfordshire, Indiana, USA
Author of Good Eating (The Christian Practice of Everyday Life) (2001), On God and Dogs: A Christian Theology of Compassion for Animals (1998), and Taking Religion to School: Christian Theology and Secular Education (2000).

Dr. Jon Wetlesen
Professor of Philosophy
University of Oslo, Norway
Articles include "The Moral Status of Beings Who Are Not Persons: A Casuistic Argument", Environmental Values, 8/3 (1999).

Dr. Thomas I. White
Hilton Professor of Business Ethics
Director of the Centre for Ethics and Business
College of Business Administration, Loyola Marymount University, Los Angeles, California, USA
Author of Right and Wrong (1988), and many articles including, "Doing Business in Morally Troubled Waters: Dolphins, The Entertainment Industry and the Ethics of Captivity (2000), "Dolphins and the Question of Personhood" (1998), and "Is the Dolphin a Person?" (1991).

Professor Jean-Claude Wolf
Professor of Philosophy
Department of Philosophy, University of Fribourg, Switzerland
Author of Animal Ethics: New Perspectives for Men on Other Animals (in German) (1992).

Attorney Steven M. Wise, PhD
Adjunct Professor
Vermont Law School, and formerly Lecturer at Law, Harvard Law School, USA
Author of Rattling the Cage: Toward Legal Rights for Animals (2000), and Unlocking the Cage: Science and the Case for Animal Rights (A Merloyd Lawrence Book) (2002).