Primal Scream Time: NY Judge Gives 2 Chimpanzees ‘Human’ Status

by Warner Todd Huston | April 21, 2015 5:43 pm

As far as a judge in New York is concerned, the “Planet of the Apes” is no longer a fantastic sci fi movie because he has given two chimps legal status as humans.

The judge has given the chimps legal status[1] so that they can “challenge their captivity.”

A New York judge has granted two research chimps the writ of habeas corpus — a move that allows them to challenge their detention.

The decision, says Science magazine, effectively recognizes chimps as legal persons, marking the first time in U.S. history that an animal has been given that right.

The order, dated April 20, requires Stony Brook University to appear in court and provide a legally sufficient reason for keeping the two chimps, Hercules and Leo. A hearing is scheduled for May 6.

The Nonhuman Rights Project (NhRP), the group that filed the case on behalf of the chimps, said in a statement it believed that Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Barbara Jaffe’s order “implicitly determined that Hercules and Leo are ‘persons.’ ”

The idiocy of this is that the chimps didn’t take their captors to court… HUMANS did it assuming the chimps would go to court if they were able.

In other words, the animals are no smarter, no more human now than they were before the judge made his absurd declaration and they have no clue they have been given rights, can’t observe them, and will not understand what it all means.

Now certainly we should not feel free to misuse and abuse animals, but they are not human and giving them human status necessarily diminishes our own status.

Endnotes:
  1. given the chimps legal status: http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2015/04/21/401219719/n-y-judge-grants-legal-rights-to-2-research-chimps

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