Indirect Theories On indirect theories, animals do not warrant our moral concern on their own, but may warrant concern only in so far as they are appropriately related to human beings. The implications these sorts of theories have for the proper treatment of animals will be explored after that. Finally, two common methods of arguing against indirect theories will be discussed.
Kant argues that we have no direct moral duties to animals as beings with inherent value; we have only indirect duties to them insofar as our treatment of them affects the interests of other human beings.
Animals are not self-conscious and are there merely as the means to an end. That end is man. In contrast, animal rights advocates argue that animals are beings with inherent value, and so we have direct duties to them whether or not our actions toward them promote the interests of other human beings.
To cite just one example, Tom Regan argues that animals have inherent rights for the same reason that we do: We may consider this argument a direct, or intrinsic, account of duties to animals, as opposed to the indirect, or instrumental, account that Kant offers.
In fact, we can still see its impact today. For example, the Texas Animal Cruelty Laws, ostensibly intended to protect animals from cruel and inhumane treatment, apply only to domesticated animals under the custody of human beings.
Unfortunately, animals will never gain the moral and legal status they deserve if we continue to operate within the parameters of the indirect-duties view.
Therefore, if we are to progress toward the goal of animal liberation, we must first amend the principles on which the animal cruelty laws are based.
To this end, I will challenge the validity of the indirect-duties view by arguing that Kantian ethics not only permits but entails the inclusion of animal rights. I recognize that this approach will put me at odds with Kant, but I can live with that.
Does his view follow from a proper application of his own theory, or is it simply the inconsistent result of uncritical prejudice? Many have challenged Kant by pointing out that his argument rests on the assumption that animals are nonrational, whereas we now know that many animals possess significant rational capacities.
Furthermore, even though not all animals are able to perform higher cognitive functions, they are nonetheless able to set ends based on inclination and pursue the necessary means for achieving them, often creatively. This research suggests that any argument for the universal moral superiority of human beings will be unsuccessful, because no matter what criteria we select, some animals will always outperform some humans.
While this response has merit, I do not presently intend to side with it, nor do I intend to develop this line of reasoning any further, as it is an empirical argument that tries to fit animals into the Kantian view, not an analysis of the view itself.
Instead, for the sake of the argument I wish to lay out, I will actually presuppose that all animals are nonrational granting that this point encounters substantial empirical resistance in order to argue that the low moral value Kant extends to animals poses significant problems for his ethical theory.
I will then show that the humanity formula, because of this problem, clashes not only with the other formulas of the CI, but also with the very sensibilities on which the moral law is based.
I will conclude by suggesting that we can solve this problem only by extending the moral radar, and that our only means for doing so will incorporate animals into it. In short, I will argue that Kantian ethics, in order to protect the vulnerabilities of human beings, must protect animals as well.
The Kantian Argument against Animal Rights I begin by outlining exactly why Kant believes animals do not have direct moral status.
It means that one must regard that thing an end in itself, or rather, as a being whose value commands the respect of all rational agents. In contrast, if something has indirect moral status, one must regard that thing not for its own sake, but to comply with a duty one has towards something else.
In this sense we have indirect moral duties concerning inanimate objects.This study is one of thousand of studies on prosociality / premorality / morality in our animal cousins.
It's part of evolutionary morality. "Many social animals such as primates, dolphins and whales have shown to exhibit what Michael Shermer refers to as premoral sentiments.
1. Nonhuman animals (normal, fully developed mammals) are "experiencing subjects," just as humans are.
2. All experiencing subjects have equal inherent value. 3. All those with equal inherent value are entitled to equal moral rights. 4. Therefore, nonhuman animals have equal moral rights. As we can see, animal abuse touches almost every part of our lives, from our cosmetics to the pets in our homes.
The issue of whether or not animals should be given equal moral consideration can change animals’ status in our society and alter the way humans act towards animals. Moral status of animals is not equal to that of humans and opting out of animal research condemns patients to pain and suffering.
Ringach recognizes our moral obligation to the welfare of animals and the need to look for alternatives to animals testing, but with our current capabilities, he (as many researchers and even ethicists would agree) that the good outweighs the harms in these cases.
Christopher Hitchens on Animal Rights, Our Human Hubris, and the Lesser Appreciated Moral of George Orwell’s “Animal Farm” “All animals are equal but some animals are more equal than others.”. Morality and our lives with animals become bogged down in attempts to prove that animals have enough similarity to humans to warrant their inclusion in our moral This is part of a.