An animal sentience bill in the British parliament is causing quite a stir in which some members of the Conservative Party may revolt over it. According to the London Times, the long-debated Animal Welfare Sentience Bill in the House of Lords would essentially confer animals in the United Kingdom with the same legal rights as human beings.
Presently, the bill applies only to vertebrates but the government plans to broaden it to apply even to sea life such as octopuses, lobsters, and crabs. Some large donors to the CP are alarmed that animal rights groups seemingly are able to influence policy with the Prime Minister. From The Times:
“Animal welfare has risen up the agenda since Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park became an environment minister in 2019 (Ben Webster writes). He has long campaigned for better protection for animals and his arguments have been strengthened by a growing body of evidence showing animals have feelings and sensations.
Goldsmith’s efforts have been assisted by his close links with influential figures. He is a patron of the Conservative Animal Welfare Foundation, as is his friend Carrie Johnson, wife of the prime minister. The foundation campaigns on many farm animal welfare issues, including calling for bans on farrowing crates for pigs, cages for hens, live exports and rules to protect fish from suffering slow, painful deaths.”
The bill would create a new parliamentary committee that would scrutinize new legislation and policies that might apply to animal welfare. However, ministers would not have to follow its advice. Hunting and fishing groups are concerned the panel would taken over by people hostile to their livelihoods and even use its authority to endorse banning meat production while other critics fear infrastructure construction and even farming could also come grinding to a halt.
Regardless of the so-called growing body of evidence showing animals have feelings and sensations, the basis of individual rights is not based on a being’s ability to feel pain, but on one’s ability to think. It is a human being’s capability to think and reason that separates us from animals and is why homo-sapiens are nature’s favored species.
At the very least, it would be helpful to remind Prime Minister Boris Johnson and the Conservative Animal Welfare Foundation that it was English philosopher John Locke who essentially corrected an error on the part of Renee Descartes who claimed: I feel pain, therefore I have rights. In his tract outlining morality, Locke stated that in order for a being to have rights, it must have the capacity to know what rights are, or reason.
Animals survive mainly by predatory instincts, and do not have the rational faculties of humans. Therefore, they should not be given the same legal rights as humans at any time since to do so is to enable forces who champion the nihilism of the animal kingdom and will have license to destroy the man-made civilization of the United Kingdom. Hopefully, the Animal Welfare Sentence Bill will be sacked and the idea will never be taken up again.