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    The Saga of the Great Apes

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    In 700-800 words, examine environmental issues from various ethical perspectives in order to obtain a comprehensive understanding of the situation, its causes, and possible remedies, also create 3 power point slides to summarize this assignment.

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    The Extended Family
    The Saga of the Great Apes
    98
    INTRODUCTION
    "In a clearing in the jungle of the Congo river basin," Laura Spinney
    writes, "local hunters hold an illegal market twice a month with
    workers from a nearby logging concession to trade bushmeat for
    ammunition, clothes and medicine. Among the carcasses that change hands are
    chimpanzees, gorillas and bonobos (pygmy chimpanzees), all of which are protected
    species."1 That is not the only market. All over the tropical forests of
    West and Central Africa, Latin America and Asia, increasing numbers of commercial
    hunters are slaughtering the primates, especially the great apes, for food
    and also for export. Conservationist Jane Goodall, the world's foremost expert
    on the chimpanzee, has stated that unless this hunting is stopped, "in 50 years
    there will be no viable populations of great apes left in the wild."2

    THE TRADITIONAL FOOD OF THE
    INDIGENOUS POPULATIONS

    It is not easy to tell people in poverty not to hunt monkeys and apes. They are
    traditional food in Central Africa, and to the hunters, "They're just animals."3
    A hunter will get $60 for an adult gorilla, and a full-grown chimpanzee would
    bring almost as much. (Since gorillas bring a better price than chimpanzee,
    chimpanzee meat is often sold as gorilla.) Concerned observers in the area
    often have reservations about the practice but end by defending the hunting.
    As David Brown of the British government's delegation to the Convention
    on Trade in Endangered Species put it, bushmeat is "a major component
    of the economies of much of equatorial Africa. It is a primary source of animal
    protein and the main export commodity for the inhabitants." He therefore
    thinks that the "industry" should be "managed, not stigmatised and
    criminalised."4

    Hunting is now a greater threat than habitat loss to ape populations already
    strained to the breaking point. "The World Wide Fund for Nature estimates
    that there are no more than 200,000 chimps, 111,000 western lowland gorillas,
    10,000 eastern lowland gorillas and 620 mountain gorillas left in the wild."
    With respect to bonobos, their "numbers are thought to have halved in the
    past 20 years."5 Why has the hunting of primates increased so dramatically,
    especially in Africa? In all probability, the hunting has been triggered by the
    African population explosion of the last 20 years, which has increased the density
    of human population all through the forest and countryside and left a hungry
    population in the burgeoning cities. The pygmies, for instance, in Congo
    and Cameroon, used to eat anything that moved in the forest with no fear of
    impacting the species: there was one pygmy for every 10 square kilometres,
    and with their poisoned arrows, at that density, they could do no real harm.
    They would probably do no harm at ten times that density, at one person per
    one square kilometer.6 But now there are many more people than that, not
    only pygmies but participants in the new extractive industries.
    The mainspring for the crisis was clearly the logging industry. In efforts to
    pay off their debts and develop their nations, governments in West Africa
    have contracted with foreign companies to log the remaining rainforests.
    According to Jeff Dupain of Belgium's Royal Zoological Society in Antwerp,
    the companies usher hunters into previously inaccessible forest land when
    they make the logging roads; they "make it easier for hunters to get to the
    wildlife and transport carcasses back to towns, often using the loggers' lorries
    and boats."7Worse yet, as it happens, is their technique of driving roads deep
    into the bush to divide the forest into sectors to be worked. Where the forest
    is fragmented, the ability of a forest species to reconstitute itself after hunting
    is severely compromised, probably destroyed. As if to ensure the maximum
    destruction of wildlife, the companies issue the loggers rifles ("to protect
    themselves"), and don't send in enough food, expecting the workers to live
    off the land.8 In one logging camp alone, in one year, according to a report
    released by the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), more than 1,100 animals
    were killed, totaling 29 metric tons, and the hunting of wild game is
    three to six times higher in communities adjacent to logging roads. The WCS
    estimates that the annual harvest of bushmeat in equatorial Africa exceeds
    1 million metric tons.9

    In 1998, a coalition of 34 conservation organizations and ape specialists
    called the Ape Alliance estimated that in the Congo, up to 600 lowland gorillas
    are killed each year for their meat. Although the initial exchanges of that meat

    THE EXTENDED FAMILY 99

    take place in the bush, the bulk of the meat is sold in the cities. The railway
    station at Yaounde, the capital of Cameroon, houses a bushmeat market that
    does not close; one ton of smoked bushmeat, largely chimpanzees and gorilla,
    is unloaded there on a daily basis.10 It is no secret. "It's a 500-foot stretch of
    sidewalk only a few blocks from the presidential offices and the $200-a-night
    Hilton Hotel. . . ." Behind the antelope stalls are "piles from which long arm
    bones protrude, obviously those of chimpanzees and gorillas. At the fetish stalls,
    you can buy chimpanzee hands, gorilla skulls, round slices of elephant trunk or
    the bright red tails of endangered gray parrots."11 (If you boil the finger of a
    gorilla, the people believe, and add the water to the baby's bath, the baby will
    be strong like a gorilla.)12 Thousands of chimpanzees are killed each year.
    Chimpanzees reproduce at the rate of one baby every four years, gorillas usually
    more slowly than that. The apes do not have the reproductive capacity to
    bounce back from this kind of assault.13

    There can be no doubt of the reaction of the developed nations to the
    facts. A World Wide Web query on the subject of "bushmeat" yielded "about"
    (the search engine's word) 26,300 entries in 0.42 seconds, and all that were
    sampled were linked to organizations determined to stop the slaughter and
    protect the apes. In April 1999, the same month that the WCS report came
    out, 28 organizations and agencies, led by the Jane Goodall Institute, issued a
    major statement on the protection of the apes. It enumerated the measures that
    would have to be taken immediately if the apes were to survive, calling on
    educators, governments, corporations in general and above all the logging,
    mining, and other extractive industries to take immediate action to protect the
    apes.14 A year later, the situation had not improved. Writing in the Washington
    Post, Jane Goodall estimated that the number of chimpanzees had declined to
    150,000 from the million and more that roamed the wild when she began her
    chimpanzee research in 1960.15 Six months later, the 2,500 delegates to an
    eight-day environment meeting in Amman, Jordan, ended with a request to
    IUCN-The World Conservation Union to put all possible pressure on governments
    to take steps to curtail the trade in bushmeat. By that time the hunting
    was "a commercialized industry where automatic weapons have replaced
    bows and arrows," an industry worth $350 million a year in Ghana, $121 million
    annually in the Ivory Coast.16 The directors of the represented environment
    groups talked grimly of "strong conservation solutions" that had to be
    adopted immediately.17

    Yet there is clearly no unanimity with the developing world. The sense
    of revulsion that attends the contemplation of the market in ape hands and
    fingers, shared by so many in the nations of Europe and North America,
    is obviously not shared by the hunters, by the loggers, or even by the African
    and Asian governments nominally in charge of the hunting grounds.
    How come we feel it? Before we go any further in examining this controversial
    subject, let us take a closer look at the great apes and see if we can
    discover, first, who these apes are, and second, based on that information,
    possibly, the source of the conviction that the bushmeat harvest is fundamentally
    wrong.

    100 CHAPTER SIX

    THE QUARRY IN THE GREAT
    BUSHMEAT HUNT

    Who are the great apes? At one point a variety of species of large tailless apes
    lived in large numbers in equatorial Africa and Southeast Asia, but those populations
    have been reduced to fragmented pockets. As noted earlier, we know
    that the individuals in the four remaining species number only in the hundreds
    and thousands and that a new virus could wipe them all out. In our generation,
    we may see the end of the wild apes. Let us find out who they are-
    quick, before they are gone.

    First of all, as is commonly known, the apes are our relatives. Furthest from
    us on the family tree are the "lesser apes," the gibbons (Hylobates) of Southeast
    Asia, who show amazing dexterity and acrobatic skill but who are distinguished
    from monkeys only by their tendency to walk upright. The "great
    apes," our closest relatives, are the orangutan, the gorilla, and the chimpanzee.
    We will take a quick look at them before exploring the enormous ethical
    dilemma they pose for us.

    The orangutans (Pongo pygmaeus), native to Borneo and Sumatra, live in solitary
    splendor in the canopy of the Asian rainforest, from which they rarely descend
    to the ground. They are not bipedal (disposed to walk on two feet) at all but rather
    bibrachial-their major mode of locomotion is swinging through the trees. About
    twice the size of females, males command overlapping territories of about 40
    square kilometers. They do not tolerate each other, tending to harass and kill any
    males they meet in the course of a day's foraging.18 Normally they have little use
    for humans. However, as their habitat withstood the impact of war, agriculture,
    and logging and their numbers fell to 20,000 in 1992 and ever further with the
    passage of time, they cannot survive now without human help. According to a
    National Geographic report on orangutans published in August 1998, the apes may
    reproduce only once in an eight-year interval; the mothers nurse their infants for
    about six years, and older siblings can hang around for several more years. As habitat
    shrinks, male violence increases, and the death rate of males rises. The prospects
    for the survival of the species in the wild are not good.19

    The African apes are more closely related to us humans. The bonobos (Pan
    paniscus), native to central Congo, are simply smaller chimpanzees, recognized
    as a separate species only since the 1930s.The chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes) is
    probably our closest relative, sharing 98.5 percent of our DNA. (Does that
    make the consumer of bushmeat 98.5 percent cannibal? Karl Ammann would
    contend that indeed it does.20) The gorilla (Gorilla gorilla, as named by a biologist
    fresh out of imagination) is the largest of the apes, the male averaging 400
    pounds. None of the apes is truly bipedal, suggesting to some anthropologists
    that bipedalism made the 1.5 percent difference between the ape and the
    human.The mechanisms by which the change occurred are still under scrutiny.
    The extensive similarities between us and the apes raise serious moral questions
    about the great bushmeat hunt. The chimpanzees, for instance, use tools.
    They extract termites from their mounds with straws and sticks, and they crack

    THE EXTENDED FAMILY 101

    nuts with hammers. They pick out "anvils," depressed knotholes of harder
    wood where a nut can be positioned securely; find "hammers," pieces of hard
    wood or stones for the tougher cases; bring their piles of nuts to the anvils; and
    start hammering.21 The behavior is in no way instinctive. It is learned, taught
    to each new generation by the last. Further, it is cultural; in different areas, different
    groups of chimpanzees have learned different ways of cracking nuts and
    use different sets of tools to catch termites. In contrast to the gorillas, who live
    in foraging tribes much like those of our own hunting-gathering forebears, in
    which dominant males protect and lead the troop and gentle females painstakingly
    rear their infants, widely spaced by birth, chimpanzees hunt in groups.
    They communicate complex messages, we know not how. Spoken language as
    we know it is impossible for chimpanzees because of the placement of the
    structures of their throat-they cannot guide air over a voicebox as we can-
    but they can learn language: chimps have been taught American sign language,
    lexigrams, and token languages. They can communicate with us when we are
    willing to use these languages, not at any high intellectual level, but at least at
    the level of a young child.22

    How do we know what we know about the apes? Because of their similarities
    to us, they have attracted many of the best students to observe and inform
    us of their ways. Louis Leakey, the great anthropologist of early humanoids,
    sent three of his best students into the wild to study the apes.

    The careers of those students-all women (Leakey thought that women
    would develop better rapport with wild apes)-are instructive. "Leakey's
    Angels," as they were called, followed identical paths. They each studied the
    apes on site, seeking to advance the science of zoology by collecting and publishing
    data on these fascinating animals. Later, graduate students came to join
    them, also to study. Then, as they became alarmed at the pressures on the habitat
    and on the shrinking numbers of their "subject matter," the researchers
    turned their emphasis to public education, hoping to effect more enlightened
    policies that would be to the longterm benefit of both animals and humans.
    Then, no doubt as a consequence of that 98.5 percent identity with their subjects,
    inevitably they became advocates for them, setting up orphanages and
    hospitals for the surviving victims of the bushmeat and black-market rareanimals
    trade. By this time, they had dropped all pretense of seeing the apes as
    mere beasts. Having originally taken up their posts in Africa simply to study
    the apes, they stayed on to protect them.

    Dian Fossey, who chose the mountain gorillas, achieved the dubious and
    quite unexpected fame of martyrdom. She arrived in Africa in 1963 determined
    to study the mountain gorillas of Rwanda. With the support of Louis
    Leakey and financial help from the National Geographic Society, she set up
    permanent residence in the Karisoke Research Center in Rwanda in 1967.
    During her 18 years of studying the mountain gorillas at Karisoke, she became,
    effectively, part of a gorilla group. She was able to watch youngsters be born,
    mature, and become responsible adults in the group. Proudly she observed as
    one of her favorites, Digit, became the head of a family. When Digit was killed
    by poachers (his head taken as a totem, his hands cut off to be made into

    102 CHAPTER SIX

    ashtrays), Fossey was galvanized into action. She wrote a book, Gorillas in the
    Mist, to popularize her cause, and turned her research center into a refuge. As a
    crusader for the protection of the gorillas she eventually made herself sufficiently
    bothersome to become a murder victim-killed (in 1985) by the
    poachers whose prey she was trying to protect. Two years later a movie was
    made of her highly readable book to recount her career and (not incidentally)
    to publicize the cause of protection of the animals who had become her
    friends. It is through that movie that most of us know of her.

    Biruté Galdikas, possibly the least known of the Angels, chose the most remote
    setting for her work-Borneo, one of the last habitats of the orangutan. She met
    Leakey in 1968, and with his support and that of the National Geographic Society
    she set up a research camp in Borneo (Camp Leakey, of course). She has been
    there ever since. In 1995 she published her autobiography, Reflections of Eden: My
    Years with the Orangutans of Borneo,23 which describes her education, scientific
    career, and the establishment of Camp Leakey. By then the camp had become not
    so much a research center as a refuge, where wild orangutans, rescued from the
    poachers, are rehabilitated and integrated eventually back into the wild. With a
    co-author, she published another book in 1999, rich with photographs of the
    orangutans, for the sole purpose of raising money for her center.24

    But for the dramatic movie about Dian Fossey, Jane Goodall, who has spent
    40 years studying the chimpanzees in Gombe National Park in Tanzania, would
    surely be the best known. Goodall spent the first 30 years following a mid-size
    group of chimpanzees as they hunted, socialized, and squabbled on a mountain
    within the park. Eventually they got used to the zoologist following them
    around, and she was able to document their lives in some detail. As she studied
    she wrote, presenting to the world a picture of omnivorous and versatile personalities
    of animals very like ourselves; it was she who first documented the
    use of tools and the possibility of culture among the chimpanzees.25 She went
    through the same mutations as the other Angels: once spending time in Africa
    to study the chimpanzees, she now spends most of her time on the lecture circuit
    trying to raise money for them.

    Goodall also brought us the most startling and disturbing revelations about
    the lives of the great apes. She had studied the chimps for years, raised her child
    among them, learned their social structures, customs, and laws and the distinct
    and quirky personalities of the troop she chose to follow, when she sent in new
    and alarming reports, this time of psychosis among the chimpanzees. A female
    who had no infants of her own had started to steal infants from weaker females.
    Since she could not care for the infants, she ate them. Other females started
    accompanying her on her kidnapping raids and begged infant flesh for themselves.
    A terrible pattern of psychotic murder and cannibalism, hitherto unseen
    in the animal world, played itself out before Goodall's eyes. Apparently the
    behavior had a physical origin, for it stopped when the female perpetrator herself
    became pregnant.

    Worse yet were the implications of vicious intergroup violence among
    Goodall's chimpanzees. After many years of group living, her troop split up, a
    small band of them taking up residence on the other side of the mountain.

    THE EXTENDED FAMILY 103

    Then mysteriously the smaller group began to die off, one by one. Troubled,
    Goodall began closer observations to see what was killing them. To her surprise
    and horror she found that the killers were bands of raiders from the other
    half of the group. Chimpanzees were attacking other chimpanzees in a way
    that she had never seen before. Violence was not unusual among the chimpanzees:
    males often fought each other for dominance in the group. But in
    those ordinary conflicts no one died or got seriously hurt. In these new conflicts,
    the victim always died or was left for dead. The attacks were planned,
    organized, and directed for maximal effectiveness, isolating a single member of
    the victim group and ambushing him. The strongest chimps led the attack;
    youngsters followed along and gleefully pounced on the victim when he was
    almost dead.

    No reason for the attacks could be determined. There was no rivalry over
    food-in plentiful supply for all on both sides of the mountain. There was no
    rivalry over land, females, or any other resource. There was no discernable environmental
    threat (except to the victims after the raids started). And finally,
    there was no question that the hunt and the killing were deliberate: the night
    before a raid, the raiding party would take up their positions in a tree near the
    normal territory of the other group and spend the night in very untypical
    silence; then the hunt itself would be carried out in dead silence so that the
    victim might not have warning to get away. It was deliberate killing by the
    chimpanzees of another of their own species and acquaintance for no reason
    but that he belonged to a different group. It was, in the words of one observer,
    a clear case of genocide. And the killers clearly enjoyed it, very much.
    Far from challenging the notion of human-ape relatedness, the psychotic
    and genocidal behavior witnessed by Goodall reinforces it. The great apes are
    alarmingly human. Their lives are much like ours in the foraging period. Their
    families are much like ours. They sin. They have rituals of forgiveness for individual
    sin and are totally unconscious of group sin. They are just like us. When
    we look into the eyes of the ape, we look at our own not-so-distant past.
    Is it that fact primarily that grounds our conviction that we must somehow
    protect the apes from slaughter? As of October 2000, even the tightfisted U.S.

    Congress had voted $5 million for the Department of the Interior, "to use for
    grants to organizations involved in efforts to protect the great apes."26 On what
    is this conviction based? Where, ethically speaking, do the apes stand?
    Apologists advance different, and occasionally incompatible, arguments for
    their protection. We will examine these arguments in the following sections.

    APES IN THE WILD: THE PRESERVATION
    OF ENDANGERED ECOSYSTEMS

    In the objections to the uses of apes for meat, one of the first points always
    noted is that apes, as species, are "protected." What is this "protection"? What
    is the rationale for "protecting" species?

    104 CHAPTER SIX

    First, let us be clear that it is not the "species," in the sense of a certain pattern
    of DNA, that is being protected-in that sense, we could freeze a few tissue samples
    and preserve the species forever. Nor is it the separate individuals that we
    propose to save, except perhaps in desperation. The entire ecosystem in which
    the species operates is and must be the object of conservation activity (in the case
    of the apes the ecosystem is the tropical rainforest).We may think of every species
    as a unique tract, a text from nature, a storehouse of information, infinitely valuable,
    and each species as a chapter in the book of its own ecosystem. The species
    and the ecosystem evolved together and must be preserved together.
    We should bear in mind that in the worldwide initiative to preserve the
    environment the great apes play two roles, roles in tension with each other.

    The first role is as a keystone of the ecosystem, the animal near the top of the
    food chain without whose presence the balance would not be kept. The New
    England ecosystem was for all intents and purposes destroyed, for instance,
    when for good and sufficient reason the cougars and wolves were killed or
    driven out. By now accustomed to the overpopulation of white-tailed deer
    and rabbits and to the impoverishment of the woods and fields caused by overgrazing,
    we will never know how that ecosystem functioned when it was in
    balance. Similarly, the tropical forest cannot be saved unless we can preserve it
    with all of its species flourishing. And the danger is real: with the slow rate of
    reproduction of the great apes, these species are under significant threat.

    The second role played by the apes is as a symbol of the ecosystem, much
    as the northern spotted owl symbolizes the redwood forest in the battle to save
    the giant sequoias of California's northern coast. Because they are so like us,
    the apes garner sympathy on their own. Portraying them as endangered wins
    sympathy for the effort to preserve the ecosystem as a whole. .The first role is
    described as part of ecology, the second is frankly part of preservation strategy.
    This second role can be viewed as strategic (as part of a preservation strategy),
    the first as ecological. When environmentalists confuse the two roles, the result
    can be ethically ambivalent.

    Consider a case in point. When the forest fires broke out over the West and
    Central Kalimantan provinces of Indonesia some four years ago, primatologist
    Barita Manullang, head of the World Wide Fund for Nature's Orangutan
    Conservation Project in Jakarta, went to Central Kalimantan to see how the
    orangutans were faring. The result horrified him.
    In each [village] he found a baby orangutan held in a crude cage. He
    knew immediately that the animals' mothers were dead: a mother orangutan
    would never abandon her young. When pressed, the farmers in each village
    told Manullang the same gruesome tale. A mother with the baby clinging
    to its long reddish hair had fled from the nearby smoking forest into the
    village's gardens in search of food. Barking dogs had alerted the villagers to
    the presence of the animals. As the dogs attacked, farmers wielding
    machetes and sharpened sticks hacked and stabbed the mothers to death.
    The babies were taken captive-to be sold for up to $100 apiece as pets or
    to illicit wildlife traders. The dead mothers were skinned and eaten.27

    THE EXTENDED FAMILY 105

    The habitat problem is particularly severe for the orangutans, who are found
    only in the wilderness of Sumatra and Borneo. The rich tropical forest in
    which they make their homes provides abundantly if left alone. But agribusiness
    is making constant inroads on the forest, and the 1997 fires made their situation
    much worse. There is strong suspicion that the fires were not accidental.
    International proposals (including an environmental impact study in 1996) had
    recommended conserving 70 percent of the Central Kalimantan orangutan
    habitat as environmental reserve. But Jakarta (including President Suharto's
    powerful family) saw more profit in a mega-rice project that would require
    massive deforestation of that habitat. Deforestation went forward regardless of
    environmental impact, and the burning finished the job. The fires drove the
    animals out of the woods, making life easier for the poachers, and simultaneously
    made those areas not worth preserving as forest habitat. Agribusiness and
    poachers alike profited from the fires.28

    Yet Manullang found it difficult to condemn the small farmers who had
    killed the orangutans, even as contemporary observers find it difficult to condemn
    all killing of gorillas for bushmeat. The farmers have no choice in their
    approach to the orangutans. They live by subsistence farming, close to the edge
    of survival, and cannot afford to let the hungry apes, driven out of the forest,
    demolish their gardens. Indeed, the meat of the adult orangutans killed in this
    latest slaughter probably added significantly to the annual protein intake of the
    farmers.

    Ethical ambivalence also attends the situation of the Karisoke gorillas.
    Rwanda, neighboring Burundi, and several other nations of Central Africa
    have been involved in terrible civil wars, genocide (especially between the
    Tutsi, or Watusi, tribe and the Hutu, ancient rivals), revolutions, and military
    coups.The planting cycles have been disrupted, and often the people do not
    have enough to eat. The wars and the genocide have severely compromised
    the ability of Rwandans to preserve their gorillas. Their occupations wiped
    out, the people occupy the land wherever they can, demolishing the forest for
    food, fuel wood, and building materials. They have no choice.29 How can we
    tell them, that the gorilla's life is more valuable than their own-even if, in the
    grand sweep of history, that's true?

    APES IN THE LABORATORY:
    UTILITARIAN BENEFITS AND TROUBLING
    CLAIMS OF RIGHT

    The chimpanzee shares 98.5 percent of our genetic endowment. Then why
    does the chimpanzee not get asthma, rheumatoid arthritis, acne-or AIDS,
    even when the virus is clearly present in the bloodstream? Especially HIV and
    AIDS. How can the apes harbor a similar virus harmlessly? What can we learn
    about human diseases, now and in the future, from experimentation with these

    106 CHAPTER SIX

    animals? Scientists are calling for sequencing of the chimpanzee genome and
    for study of the chimps' resistance to diseases.30 But even now, the poachers
    have lowered the number of wild chimpanzees available, to the point of hindering
    research. With all the human benefits at stake from a multiyear study of
    the immune system of chimpanzees, is there no way we can keep them out of
    the cooking pots?

    Beyond the uses of chimpanzees' bodies for medical research, what else
    may we learn from that overwhelmingly similar genome? Since the great apes
    can learn language and seem to experience all emotions that we know, they
    may provide an irreplaceable subject for the study of language acquisition and
    human psychology. As noted earlier, we also find (or rather, Jane Goodall
    found) the same psychopathologies in the chimpanzee, even the tendency to
    genocide.31 Is that subject amenable to study? We cannot do research at all on
    sophisticated human criminal behavior, because it becomes impossible to conceal
    from the subject what is being studied. Yet chimpanzees, who exhibit all
    the psychopathological behavior that we do, are not able to understand the
    hypotheses of the research. Perpetually naïve subjects, they may well be able to
    give us pure results about very impure behavior. Maybe we could even learn to
    control it ourselves.

    What limitations affect the use of the apes in the laboratory? A growing
    movement is afoot to end all animal research or at least regulate it much more
    strictly. In the past, animals of all kinds have been beaten, tortured (not as part of
    the research but for the amusement of the staff ), abused, neglected, caged without
    fresh air or exercise, starved, and left to die of infection in uncleaned cages.
    Clearly such treatment is wrong, and wrong for reasons that have nothing to do
    with the special qualities of the apes. Civilized people generally acknowledge an
    obligation to treat all animals humanely-not humanly, but gently, so as not to
    cause them pain or distress. That general obligation entails at least that animals
    be fed and watered properly, allowed adequate exercise and companionship, and
    kept in clean and well-lighted quarters. The obligation applies to pets, dogs, and
    cats, and to farm animals, as well as to the monkeys and apes kept in captivity
    for research or for the amusement of our children. (The imperative for the
    "humane" treatment of animals actually first applied to horses and was much
    encouraged by nineteenth-century English books for girls, like Anna Sewell's
    Black Beauty.) The humane perspective asks only that we show mercy and consideration
    to creatures who share with us the capacity for pain.

    Because of the history of, and propensity for, abuse, scientific research that
    uses animals for its subjects requires enforcement of specific protocols by federal
    regulation. Such regulation, however, has not prevented studies of unimaginable
    cruelty-one of which, Thomas Gennarelli's University of Pennsylvania
    study on head injuries, came to national attention when the Animal Liberation
    Front "liberated" a particularly damaging set of videotapes from the laboratory
    and gave them national exposure.32

    Some of the rules developed in the name of humane treatment undermine
    the scientific purposes for which certain studies are done. When higher mammals
    are to be used for experimental surgery, for instance, and there is a strong

    THE EXTENDED FAMILY 107

    likelihood that the animal will be in pain should it be allowed to regain consciousness,
    the rules call for the animal to be humanely killed before it wakes
    up. However, unless the animal is kept alive, it might not be possible to ascertain
    whether surgery is a success.

    But in using apes as subjects of experimentation, humane treatment is not
    the only issue. With regard to chimpanzees in particular, their very similarity
    to us raises questions about the way research is conducted. In the major studies
    of chimpanzee research, especially Roger Fouts's semi-autobiographical
    account of his life with the chimpanzees,33 questions of right and humane
    treatment tend to overlap. He abhors the "prison-like" setting of most experimental
    labs, roundly condemns the scientists who do research for their own
    professional purposes, and ends up suggesting that no matter how useful it is,
    we ought to abandon animal research altogether.34

    APES IN COURT: SHOULD THEY HAVE THE
    RIGHTS OF PERSONS?

    We may grant that it is important to preserve ecosystems, for environmental
    reasons. We may also grant that it is important to preserve animals that are useful
    for research and to treat those animals humanely. But there seems to be
    more to the apes question than those provisos. As seen in our earlier discussion,
    in many respects, they are human: they have culture, they react to suffering
    as humans do, they display a multitude of similar behavioral traits. Should
    apes be treated as humans? This is the final and great question.
    Stories always propel the argument. Anecdotes of ape behavior continually
    grab us where our human sympathy lives. Eugene Linden tells us one of them:
    Twenty years ago I met a chimpanzee named Bruno. He was one of a
    group of chimps being taught American Sign Language to determine if
    apes could communicate with humans. Last year I went to see him again.
    The experiment is long past, and Bruno was moved in 1982 to a medical
    laboratory, but he is still using the signs. . . . 35

    Bruno had learned how to talk in the community in which he found himself.
    Then, the experiment over, his ability to talk was of no further use to the
    members of that community, so researchers shipped him off to someplace
    where he could be used as an oversized lab rat to test vaccines or new drugs.
    But he still wants to talk, to communicate. He is not content with the secure
    and well-fed life. He is like us humans, and he wants to reach out to humans as
    they once reached out to him. What right have we to impose isolation on such
    an animal?

    Given Bruno's humanness, should we extend to him, and to his species, the
    rights of humans? John Blatchford, a British zoologist, suggested as much in
    1997.36 David Pearson, of the Great Ape Project (a systematic international
    campaign for rights for the great apes, founded in 1993) took up Blatchford's

    108 CHAPTER SIX

    suggestion in January 1998, calling attention to a "paradigm shift over the past
    20 years or so in our understanding of the complex emotional and mental lives
    of the great apes-a complexity that demands we confer the basic rights of
    life, individual liberty and freedom from torture on all great apes."37 By 1999,
    the Great Ape Project joined the New Zealand campaign for full "human
    rights" to apes: to ensure that New Zealand's Animal Welfare bill contained a
    "clause making nonhuman great apes the first animals in the world with individual,
    fundamental rights that will stand up in a court of law: the right to life,
    the right not to suffer cruel or degrading treatment, and the right not to take
    part in all but the most benign experiments."38 The campaign failed, voted
    down in the New Zealand parliament in May of that year.39 Parliament did,
    however, recommend an end to all experiments involving apes except for the
    benefit of the apes themselves.

    The campaign continues, calling for a United Nations Declaration of the
    Rights of Great Apes. This declaration would include all the above rights as
    well as the right not to be "imprisoned" without due process. Due process?
    The language necessarily causes nervousness, not only among the zookeepers
    but also among those who carry on research designed to protect the welfare of
    apes. Must they obtain informed consent in the future?

    Primatologist Frans de Waal of the Yerkes Regional Primate Research
    Center in Atlanta argues that according rights to the apes puts us on a "slippery
    slope" toward the absurd. "[I]f you argue for rights on the basis of continuity
    between us and the great apes, then you have to argue continuity between apes
    and monkeys," and so on down to the laboratory rats.40 Philosopher Peter
    Singer, author of Animal Liberation, is less worried about rats obtaining legal
    rights and wonders whether the slippery slope can't be tilted the other way:
    "[I]f you deny chimps certain rights, then logically you have to deny intellectually
    disabled children too."41 Do we?

    Insight magazine decided that the topic was worth a debate and just
    prior to the New Zealand vote, asked Steven Wise, author of Rattling the
    Cage: Toward Legal Rights for Animals, to defend the affirmative, and David
    Wagner, professor of constitutional law at Regent University, to defend the
    negative, on the question, "Should great apes have some of the legal rights of
    persons?" Wagner's opposition rests flatly on the assertion that
    Humans are nonarbitrarily different. There is a remarkable consensus of
    both religion and philosophy on this uniqueness. . . . Judaism was the first
    to proclaim that god made man in His image and that He revealed
    Himself to mankind. Later on, Christianity proclaimed a radical redemption
    for all humankind, rooted in the claim that God Himself had taken
    on human nature . . . Kant . . . taught that the capacity of human beings to
    give and demand reasons for their actions was the basis of their rights and
    duties. And finally, our Founding Fathers declared that the American
    experiment was based on certain self-evident truths, beginning with the
    truth that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their
    Creator with certain unalienable rights. Notice the constant copackaging

    THE EXTENDED FAMILY 109

    of certain ideas: human uniqueness, capacity for reason-giving and special
    divine creation.42

    The claim is reinforced with abundant quotation from Scripture and Shakespeare.
    Steven Wise rests his position on the extensive similarities between
    humans and great apes and on the appropriateness of including rights for
    apes in the wave of rights-consciousness that has come into being across the
    world in the last half century. The scope of these rights has expanded
    inexorably and irreversibly. At one point we (of Western civilization) were
    willing to confine political rights to a small circle of propertied white
    men-the "men," by the way, of the quote from Jefferson in Wagner's piece.
    The natural expansion now includes the whole human race, including those
    who have no capacity whatsoever for reason-giving. There is no inconsistency,
    Wise insists, between arguing that the great apes should be accorded
    certain rights of persons now and claiming that not every life form need be
    given the same rights. The ultimate limits of equal justice will have to be
    determined by the legal and political process as the common law and
    constitutional interpretation evolve. Our inability to know or foresee the
    ultimate outcome of that process does not force us to tolerate the manifest
    injustice of denying basic rights to beings for whom we know they are
    appropriate.43

    What does it take to make a person? Note that rightful treatment does not
    presuppose or require "rationality," in any usual sense. Retarded persons, after
    all, are not "rational," and are not extended all the rights of citizenship, such as
    the right to vote. But they still have rights, in fact, they are offered even more
    protections than average citizens because they cannot protect themselves as the
    able-bodied can.

    The jury is still out on the question. We should note that the question of
    animal rights in this sense-the question of whether the higher mammals,
    especially the great apes, should be accorded the rights of humans-is rarely
    debated unemotionally. The people who believe that apes should enjoy the
    rights of humans tend to get irrational in the presence of people who don't.
    They come on like John Brown pleading for the African Americans, like
    Lawrence of Arabia pleading for the Arabs, and very like the "pro-life"
    faction, the foes of abortion, pleading for the lives of the unborn children.
    Animal rights proponents honestly believe that they are pleading not for
    some special interest or loony sentimental indulgence but for the extension
    in our law of rights to creatures who are fully entitled to them. They will not
    give up, and there is a strong possibility that this conflict will become violent
    in the years to come.

    ECOTOURISM AND RESPECT

    Suppose we decide that apes are, indeed, sufficiently like ourselves to deserve
    human rights. What follows? Should we treat them the way we treat human

    110 CHAPTER SIX

    beings with limited mental capacities-lock them in homes or institutions,
    with staff to make sure they dress in the morning, use the bathroom properly,
    and eat healthful food until they die? God forbid. The central right for any
    creature with rights is to live according to its own laws with members of its
    own community, which right the apes surely will never enjoy if we dragoon
    them into becoming members of human society. (Whether or not they would
    survive such "care" is another question, one that need not be answered.) That
    central right alone entails that the apes be left in the wild and left alone, their
    habitat protected from infringement and their communities respected as we
    would respect any human community. In short, the implications of full rights
    for apes are the same as the conclusions of the conservationists.We must work
    to preserve the forests where the apes live, we must end all poaching of "bushmeat"
    immediately, and we must structure our encounters with all the apes to
    reflect the respect owed persons with rights, living according to their own customs
    and laws.

    Meanwhile, such respect will carry out the environmentalist agenda of
    preservation of an endangered species. For the species is complex. We do not
    really preserve the species by capturing sufficient numbers of the apes and putting
    them in safe cages to eat and breed. For the apes, like ourselves, do not
    exist merely as biological organisms but as social animals under evolved systems
    of governance. We don't want the only apes left to be those in captivity.
    We want them to be wild, to continue to evolve, to anchor their ecosystems,
    and to show us a unique way of living.

    An agenda of leaving the apes in the forest, protecting the forest by law,
    and enforcing that law against poachers, satisfies two criteria for sound public
    policy: it is environmentally beneficial and it is ethically correct. But for
    such policies to be truly sustainable, they need to be economically viable
    too. The best way to set up an industry to sustain the apes is through
    enabling "ecotourism," entertaining tourists who want to visit the apes in
    the wild. After all, tourists have been traveling to Africa and Asia to see the
    animals for several centuries. Ecotourists do not come to shoot, but to enjoy
    and to learn. When ecotourism is established and running well, the tourist
    dollars support the local economy. For this reason it is in everyone's interest
    to make sure that the animals are not harmed or frightened, so that the
    tourists will enjoy themselves and will come back, bringing more dollars.
    Local officials will also ensure that the habitat is protected for that reason; as
    noted earlier, the presence of the apes is becoming the best protection a forest
    could have.

    There is some interest now in promoting international policies (debt relief
    is foremost among them) to encourage nations in the developing world to protect
    the remnants of the forest where apes may live. Even those who promote
    such policies acknowledge that under the present system of global sovereignty,
    it would be up to every nation to decide for itself whether funds allocated to
    development should be designated to the protection of the forests.44 The attitude
    displayed by governments of developing nations is not encouraging on
    the matter. But there is some hope.

    THE EXTENDED FAMILY 111

    Local experiments have worked well, on occasion. Richard Ruggiero, a
    wildlife biologist in the Office of International Affairs of the U.S. Fish and
    Wildlife Service, recounts a tale of a lowland gorilla in a village in the Congo
    that contains many of the elements of hope and caution that attend the effort
    to create ecotourism. Named "Ebobo" (gorilla; pronounced "ay-bobo") by the
    Bon Coin villagers, this solitary male had adopted the custom of frequenting
    the village, especially on the trail where the children went to school. His apparent
    motive was curiosity, nothing more. (He was too young to challenge the
    older males of the area for the right to a territory and a family.) The villagers
    immediately called for a gun to shoot him. Since they considered gorillas to be
    at once very dangerous and very good to eat, shooting him seemed the best
    course of action. Ruggiero, assigned to that village for the purpose of studying
    the wildlife in a local pond, spent hours-months-talking to various groups
    of the villagers, trying to keep Ebobo off the menu and out of the gunsights.
    (The gorilla had survived his first visit only because no one could find a gun.)
    In the end, the most persuasive protectors were the shamans, who pointed out
    that since Ebobo was not acting like normal gorillas (who avoid human habitation
    as much as they can), he might well be a returned spirit of the dead and
    should be treated with respect. As the villagers got used to him, however, problems
    arose of a different sort; they started wandering very close to him, teasing
    him, while the children threw stones at him to see what he would do.As before
    and with equally patient urgency, Ruggiero had to persuade the villagers at
    length that although Ebobo was not dangerous unless provoked, he was an
    accident waiting to happen if teased, and they should leave him alone. At the
    writing of the article, the villagers had learned to let Ebobo wander where he
    would, and he was doing no harm-even making his way through cornfields
    in a way that did not damage the crop. And the village was becoming someplace
    special because of the resident gorilla-a place worth going to, which it
    seems, is the minimum precondition for the success of ecotourism. In the case
    of Ebobo, it took a bit of education, but it worked.45

    Zoologist John Blatchford points out that without the help of the
    local communities, no protection will work, but thinks the enterprise
    possible. A recent experiment in the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest of
    Uganda-home to 300 of the 650 mountain gorillas alive in 1995-has
    already shown how this might work. Local subsistence farmers were
    given limited access to the forest perimeter and allowed to harvest some
    sustainable resources. They were also permitted to keep their bees there
    and use the mineral springs. . . . In the experiment, an estimated $30,000
    per year, 10% of the revenue generated by tourists visiting the park, was
    given to the communities living around the forest. Given that a
    Ugandan family of six must manage on $526 per year, the extra income
    to the farming community represented a great sum of money, and gave
    the community an incentive to protect the revenue-earning gorillas.

    These people were, in effect, being paid by the gorillas for their help in maintaining
    the park.46

    112 CHAPTER SIX

    Such efforts should be conjoined, Blatchford argued, with efforts to establish
    protections for apes based on their rights as persons, as discussed in the last
    section.

    Ecotourism will allow apes to stay in their wild habitats and preserve the
    ecosystem. It will allow, possibly, selective recruitment of individuals from prospering
    groups for research and possibly (see Concluding Questions, below) for
    exhibit. The respect engendered by wide experience with apes in their native
    communities will ensure that to the extent that they are removed from those
    communities, kept for display, or used in research, they will be treated well.
    And their fundamental right-the ability to run their own communities
    according to their own laws-will be honored.

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    In 700-800 words Examine environmental issues from various ethical perspectives in order to obtain a comprehensive understanding of the situation, its causes, and possible remedies, also create 3 power point slides to summarize this assignment.

    The environmental issues involved are if we should continue to permit the illegal poaching of the great apes and allow the trade in their meat. Further, we should consider if we should allow the great apes to become extinct. In addition, there is the need to protect the forests in which the great apes live and the ecosystems that supports them. Moreover, there is the issue of extending rights of citizenship to animals in general and the great apes in particular. Should rights be extended to animals that are humanlike? Besides there is a question of whether it is ethical to use apes in laboratory experiments, expose them to infections, keep them in captivity for the amusements for children. Also it is necessary to assess the issue of apes that are indispensable to the local farmers for their subsistence.
    From the virtue ethics perspective it is not an act of good character if ...

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