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The new science of animal cognition is forcing countries to overhaul their laws

EPHRAT LIVNI: ‘The more we learn about animals, the more their consciousness weighs on the human conscience. On July 7, 2012… scientists… attending a conference on consciousness “in human and non-human animals” signed the Cambridge Declaration of Consciousness. It recognizes that, despite having very different brains and body structures, other species think, feel, and experience life in much the same way humans do…

The scientific evidence of animal cognition puts humans in an awkward position. If nonhumans can think and feel and suffer pain, we ought to reconsider how we treat other creatures because the treatment reflects on us… To change the way we treat animals, we may first have to change the entire way we conceive of humans’ position in the world.

The term “speciesism” was coined by writer and animal rights activist Richard Ryder in the 1970s. He argued… that the only moral position a human can hold is belief in equality of all species. Any being that feels pain, which is every live being he says, deserves humane treatment…

Humans, then, need to stop thinking the world revolves around them and consider the scientific evidence that people, here 300,000 years, are new to the Earth. Life has existed 3.5 billion years at least. What’s more, we’re not even necessarily the most advanced creatures on the planet—just the most powerful’. SOURCE…

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