Letter: Animals’ feelings beginning to be recognized

Dear Editor,

In many ways the human race is advancing spiritually even though fewer of us are attending church. This statement is based upon the fact that many of us in the Western world are recognizing the fact that animals have feelings, like us.

The older Jewish and Christian faiths dismissed animals by stating that humans had dominion over the earth and that humans had souls and animals didn’t. Later on philosopher and mathematician Rene Descartes increased the gulf between humans and animals by stating that the animals were “like machines,” incapable of feelings.

Then along came Cambridge philosopher Henry Moore who branded Descartes’s view of animals as an “utterly destructive and murderous idea.”

He was joined by Scottish philosopher David Hume who wrote, “No truth appears to me more evident, that beasts are endowed with thought and reason as well as men.”

These brilliant minds were joined by Charles Darwin who suggested that animals have much the same emotional and mental complement as people.

More recent investigations have revised these opinions somewhat, but there is scientific proof that animals share an intelligence capacity and many of the feelings of humankind.

This knowledge has produced such dedicated followers of these beliefs in the work of our own Langley Animal Protection Society, the Fur Bearers Protection Society, Critter Care and other great organizations dedicated to the welfare of animals that we should all support to the best of our ability.

Mike Harvey, Langley

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