We use make up on an everyday basis; sun screen is used when you go on vacations and when you’re lying in the sun for relaxation. We need toothpaste and other toiletries every day to keep up our clean hygiene. To keep your hair the way that it is? You use your hair products; hair spray, gel, and moose. That eye solution or that pain reliever that you use to feel better? That results from scientific research. All of these things have one thing in common: they are tested on animals before reaching the human consumer’s hand. The animal testing debate has been ongoing since the beginning of its creation. Each side of the argument is just as passionate and believes to be one-hundred percent correct as the other side. With this argument still ever present in today’s topics of debate there will always be different opinions on the subject. Animal testing is seen as a perfect choice to keep the products that we use safe. But for many, animal testing is seen as cruel and an unneeded procedure.
Researchers that support the method of animal testing bring up the topic of humans eating animals and raising them for slaughter (Cohen & Regan, 2001). Animals are put here on the earth for a reason, researchers counter. In that way they serve a purpose by testing products and keeping the human population safe. It keeps humans from having to test products for themselves and in this way, keeping them out of harm’s way. Scientists would rather see animals put to harm instead of humans finding out the side effects for themselves. Humans also wear animal furs on clothes as a fashion statement. In order to have this happen, animals have to be skinned and slaughtered. If society can wear animals on their shoulders than it would be hypocritical to say animal testing was wrong. Animals are also used recreationally in a sport with hunting. If we are able to do these things, than we can use them for research (2001).
Humans do not realize just how dependent we are on animals. We not only depend on their meat but dairy products as well. We receive milk from cows and eggs from chickens. Entertainment is found out of seeing both exotic and domestic animals caged up in zoos. We use sheep’s wool for warmth and comfort. To survive, everything we need comes from animals. Businesses sell the products of animals and consumers buy them for both needs and wants. Researchers bring up the topic of activists wanting to give animal their own rights just as humans have their own. Humans have the right to live on this earth without harm. Activists believe that animals have these same rights and taking them away would be inhumane (2001). However, researchers say that initiating animal rights will be both costly and timely. Animals will need protection rights enforced and their own laws will need to be put into action. The human population may come to discover that giving animals these protection rights and laws will forbid actions that have long been accustomed to (2001).
While this argument offers its own opinion, there is a very opposite side to this. Researchers bring up the topic of animal rights and how animals do not have their own rights. Animals do have their own rights but only to a certain extent. Humans own these animals and we are able to have control over them. But just because we own them does not give us the right to torture them and cause them to endure unimaginable pain. Animals are terribly mistreated and denied the most basic desires of certain animal instincts. They are unable to have their own space to roam about and to see the light of day. With this in mind, morals of a human being should override all of these things.
One example of this could refer to the Draize eye test. The surface of the eye in a rabbit is ten times more likely to have the chemical hydrophilic pass through it (Kaufman, 1989). Other layers in the rabbit’s eyes are thicker than a human’s eye. Rabbit’s ability to withhold pain in the eye is much higher than humans. Therefore, irritating substances that are being tested on them will not affect them as much as it would with a human. Rabbit’s corneas are more vulnerable to damaging materials than that of a human’s. Along with the fact that the cornea has twenty-five percent of the surfaces of the eye on a rabbit while on a man’s, it is only seven percent (1989). Animals are clearly not the same as humans. They have different structures all throughout their body. Their organs work in much different ways than that of a human. If we are structured differently than what gives the researchers right to test on them.
Avon, Revlon and Faberge are three companies taking part in ending the use of animal testing. Other companies such as Noxell, who makes Noxezma Skin Care, Cover Girl, Mary Kay Cosmetics and Amway are all companies pledging to participate with non-animal testing in the future (McGill, 1989). With the need to sell safe products to consumers and not wanting to test on animals, it resulted in the industries working hard to develop a new method. Therefore, a non-animal sensitivity test on was discovered to test products and chemicals that were being sold to the public (Harbell, Landin, Mun, & Nims., 2007). The new test that was created by a company called Molecular Devices located in Menlo Park, California and was named the Cytosensor Microphysiometer (CM) test method (Bruner, Curren, Eskes, Goldberg, Hartung, McNamee, Scott, & Zuang., 2010). This new technology uses a light sensor (light-addressable potentiometric senor), also known as LAPS. In short, this laser measures the rate that cells acidify their environment (Baxter, McConnell, Miller, Owicki, Parce, Pitchford, & Wada, 1992). The CM is based on the amount of small changes in metabolism by the extra release of acidic byproducts (2010). The CM method is used by place an irritation patch upon the human skin. After evaluation, the patch is studied to identify weak irritants which would lead to a skin reaction. This method also had the capability to detect what is called “fatiguing substances” (1992). This new method use by these companies is beginning to alter what researchers and scientists see when testing consumer products. In September 2004 Europe banned the use of the Draize eye test on animals when evaluating cosmetic products. Then following this, in March of 2009 Europe banned the Draize test when testing cosmetic ingredients (2010).
Virtually everything that we use: cosmetics, hair products, and sun screen all are able to be used safely by humans because of testing on animals. But this does not mean that it is a worthy thing. Both sides of the argument offer up good points while bringing up points of efficiency but overall the moral of a human being should go along with the fact that animals should not be tortured for products. We should not force animals to endure tests that are not one-hundred percent accurate with its results. Animals are obviously different from animals and it seems that researchers cannot determine this when wanting to test products.