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posted by LaminatorX on Monday April 28 2014, @02:37PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the Better-the-Chimp-than-Corporations dept.

From the article, paraphrased:

When Steven Wise, a 63-year-old legal scholar in the field of animal law, decided to poke around Circle L Trailer Sales to assess the living conditions of the Reindeer living on the company grounds, he was horrified to discover that a former circus chimpanzee named Tommy was forced to live in inhumane conditions:

A rancid milk-musk odor wafted forth and with it the sight of an adult chimpanzee, crouched inside a small steel-mesh cell. Some plastic toys and bits of soiled bedding were strewn behind him. The only visible light emanated from a small portable TV on a stand outside his bars, tuned to what appeared to be a nature show.

Being sufficiently moved by witnessing that heinous crime, Wise and a few cohorts strolled into the Fulton County Courthouse wielding a legal document the likes of which had never been seen in any of the world's courts, a legal package including a detailed account of the "petitioner's" cruel and unusual solitary confinement along with nine affidavits gathered from leading primatologists, underscoring the physical and psychological damages such living conditions endured by a being with such cognitive capability. Tommy would not, however, have anticipated that he was about to make legal history as the first nonhuman primate to ever sue a human captor in an attempt to gain his own freedom.

Granting rights associated with personhood to non-persons has been discussed extensively before, but would be giving personhood to animals be a dangerous slippery-slope? Would be the mark of a more humane and mature society?

Related Stories

Mauritius: Safe Haven for Nonhuman Primate Experimentation? 6 comments

Mauritius, an island nation that is the world's second largest exporter of long-tailed macaques, has moved to allow scientific experimentation on the nonhuman primates locally:

The persistent fight by animal welfare activists to end nonhuman primate research has found its way to Mauritius, an island in the Indian Ocean two-thirds the size of Rhode Island. In the 1700s, Dutch and Portuguese seafarers introduced the long-tailed macaque to the island, where the animals thrived and, in recent decades, formed the basis of an export industry supplying biomedical labs in the developed world. Now, Mauritius has decided to get into the business of nonhuman primate experimentation itself even as such work is becoming increasingly constrained in North America and Europe. Last month the move touched off a heated debate in Mauritius's National Assembly about whether the government could adequately protect the macaques used in research and whether the new industry might endanger a far bigger lifeline for the island—tourism.

The debate is reverberating overseas. Activists, led by London-based Cruelty Free International, see the influence of Mauritius's five monkey breeding companies behind the government's February step allowing licenses to be issued for local research on island-bred macaques. (The new regulations also allow rabbit and rodent studies.) They contend that the companies are alarmed by a successful, high-pressure campaign to discourage commercial airlines from flying nonhuman primates from source countries such as Mauritius to research centers—and are trying to hedge their bets. The London group also argues that the new regulations, which amend the country's Animal Welfare Act, are invalid because they don't further the purpose of the original legislation.

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  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Techwolf on Monday April 28 2014, @02:55PM

    by Techwolf (87) on Monday April 28 2014, @02:55PM (#37186)

    This is a result of the failure of animial abuse laws either not being up to standerds or lack of enforment. Lack of enforment results in civians being force to sue as the only means of addressing animail abuse.

    In some places, one can go to jail due to dog humping there leg while another that entinchilly mains and kills there animal is let off scott free.

    Please forgive all the spelling errors, no spell checker on my tablet.

    • (Score: 3, Funny) by tangomargarine on Monday April 28 2014, @03:15PM

      by tangomargarine (667) on Monday April 28 2014, @03:15PM (#37207)

      entinchilly

      Ethically? Intentionally? Chinchilla?

      --
      "Is that really true?" "I just spent the last hour telling you to think for yourself! Didn't you hear anything I said?"
      • (Score: 2) by mhajicek on Monday April 28 2014, @03:18PM

        by mhajicek (51) on Monday April 28 2014, @03:18PM (#37215)

        Intentionally?

        --
        The spacelike surfaces of time foliations can have a cusp at the surface of discontinuity. - P. Hajicek
      • (Score: 2) by Techwolf on Monday April 28 2014, @03:19PM

        by Techwolf (87) on Monday April 28 2014, @03:19PM (#37217)

        Intentionally. Posting on a tablet is not ideal. Plus being a horriable speller doen't help much. While I'me good on computers, mechinicial, and other tech, language skills are sadly lacking in me.

    • (Score: 2) by Tork on Monday April 28 2014, @05:33PM

      by Tork (3914) on Monday April 28 2014, @05:33PM (#37298)
      "Please forgive all the spelling errors, no spell checker on my tablet."

      I'm not smart enough to not be able to navigate a few mis-spellings.
      --
      Slashdolt Logic: "24 year old jokes about sharks and lasers are +5, Funny." 💩
    • (Score: 2) by hybristic on Monday April 28 2014, @09:59PM

      by hybristic (10) on Monday April 28 2014, @09:59PM (#37411) Journal

      A useful technique I have used no my tablet when I don't know how to spell something is I back out and put my guessed spelling into Google and it corrects me, then I copy and paste it in place. Its a hassle, but if you really don't want people criticizing you for your spelling, its quick and effective.

  • (Score: 1, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 28 2014, @02:59PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 28 2014, @02:59PM (#37189)

    Given that more and more human rights are granted to corporations and even the most savage monkey is far more humane than most companies.

  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by IndigoFreak on Monday April 28 2014, @03:02PM

    by IndigoFreak (3415) on Monday April 28 2014, @03:02PM (#37191)

    It's ridiculous.

    If someone thinks that animals are being mistreated, we have laws for that. And if the laws aren't strong enough, then that person should see about changing the laws.

    An animal is not a person. They should not be granted person-hood. They cannot speak. We do not know what they think. They do not know anything about our laws or courts. They would not even begin to understand the system. Any lawsuit would be without their consent or knowledge. And anyone claiming to know what they feel or want would be a liar.

    For all we know even the worse treated animals would not sue their owners. Look at spousal abuse. People will get the shit beat out of them by their partner, not press charges, and go to bed with them that same night.

    Bottom line is, if animals are being abused, prosecute the owners based on the laws already on the books. Don't try to bring up some bogus lawsuit. All this is, is a money grab.

    • (Score: 2) by Techwolf on Monday April 28 2014, @03:05PM

      by Techwolf (87) on Monday April 28 2014, @03:05PM (#37192)

      What if there is no law? IE:While it was crue, there was no law broken and therefore no prosucation.

      • (Score: 3, Informative) by forsythe on Monday April 28 2014, @03:11PM

        by forsythe (831) on Monday April 28 2014, @03:11PM (#37198)

        As GP says,

        And if the laws aren't strong enough, then that person should see about changing the laws.

      • (Score: 2, Informative) by IndigoFreak on Monday April 28 2014, @03:11PM

        by IndigoFreak (3415) on Monday April 28 2014, @03:11PM (#37199)

        Then there was no crime.

        And if you want it to be a crime, go get some new laws passed.

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 28 2014, @11:42PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 28 2014, @11:42PM (#37441)

          there was no crime
          In that case, all that's needed is to locate a gov't shyster willing to interpret existing laws in an expected way.
          Carmen Ortiz [google.com]

          -- gewg_

      • (Score: 3, Interesting) by Sir Garlon on Monday April 28 2014, @03:17PM

        by Sir Garlon (1264) on Monday April 28 2014, @03:17PM (#37213)

        I grew up in upstate New York and I know there are laws against animal cruelty. I remember from time to time hearing about people in the area, mostly poor farmers, keeping a horse they couldn't afford to feed or 20 dogs in one shed or stuff like that. Awful, heartbreaking stuff that no one ever meant to turn out that way. The outcome of these cases was the animals getting taken away, sometimes destroyed, and everyone in the county sadly shaking their heads and saying "WTF?" They also made sure to repeat those stories to kids so the the kids wouldn't grow up to make those mistakes.

        IANAL but I think it's very likely applicable law exists.

        --
        [Sir Garlon] is the marvellest knight that is now living, for he destroyeth many good knights, for he goeth invisible.
    • (Score: 2) by elf on Monday April 28 2014, @03:14PM

      by elf (64) on Monday April 28 2014, @03:14PM (#37203)

      The constitution doesn't apply to animals which is the foundation of the law in the US, unless you are the NSA ;)

      If they win, who would the money go to? I am sure the lawyers will have a hefty payment coming their way but there will surely be some money left over.

      Plus there is no agreement from the monkey that it wants those particular lawyers to represent them. Would be funny speaking about a monkey as your client!

    • (Score: 2) by mrcoolbp on Monday April 28 2014, @03:15PM

      by mrcoolbp (68) <mrcoolbp@soylentnews.org> on Monday April 28 2014, @03:15PM (#37205) Homepage

      True, they can't "speak" English or Cantonese, but more then one of them have learned sign language. They also have "words" in their own language. They are rather intelligent. I'm not completely disagreeing with the parent, just pointing this out.

      --
      (Score:1^½, Radical)
      • (Score: 2, Insightful) by IndigoFreak on Monday April 28 2014, @03:33PM

        by IndigoFreak (3415) on Monday April 28 2014, @03:33PM (#37227)

        From what I understand they have the mental abilities of 5 year olds. 5 year olds cannot sue. I'm sure someone could sue on their behalf, but even then you still have a child that can speak and voice their own opinion(however low value that opinion is due to lack of understanding). An animal, even the most intelligent, can't begin to even comprehend the system or society, and never will. At least a child will begin to understand consequences. Does a monkey know about life ruining debt? Life in prison? What does it do with the money once it gets it? If a child sues then that money is most likely put into a trust until they are an adult. Or an adult is put in charge of it. Do we give the money to a lawyer? If the monkey is a millionaire after the suit do we go with adequate accommodations or should we put him up in a million dollar mansion?

        Can animals then sue animals? Who can and can't bring a lawsuit from an animal? If animals can sue can we still kill them?

    • (Score: 1, Troll) by VLM on Monday April 28 2014, @03:44PM

      by VLM (445) Subscriber Badge on Monday April 28 2014, @03:44PM (#37238)

      "They cannot speak. We do not know what they think. They do not know anything about our laws or courts. They would not even begin to understand the system. Any lawsuit would be without their consent or knowledge. And anyone claiming to know what they feel or want would be a liar."

      This inevitably ends up with feeding children, the mentally disabled, and old people into meat grinders.

      • (Score: 1) by MajorTom on Monday April 28 2014, @04:43PM

        by MajorTom (2246) on Monday April 28 2014, @04:43PM (#37270)

        "This inevitably ends up with feeding children, the mentally disabled, and old people into meat grinders."

        Soylent Green...Get your Soylent Green here...Get your Soylent Green...

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 28 2014, @06:15PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 28 2014, @06:15PM (#37317)

        This inevitably ends up with feeding children, the mentally disabled, and old people into meat grinders.

        Right, because that's how it's always ended up, time and time again. I think you need to do more research on the word "inevitably."

      • (Score: 1, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 28 2014, @06:31PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 28 2014, @06:31PM (#37326)

        Nonsense.
        When someone abuses a one year old child or a mentally handicapped person, we don't make up a bogus lawsuit claiming that the child is the plaintiff and holds a certain opionon and thinks exactly this or that. Instead we have reasonable laws to deal with the situation.

        In the same way we shouldn't make up such lawsuits when someone mistreats an animal. This is just career pushing for the lawyer.

    • (Score: 2) by Reziac on Tuesday April 29 2014, @02:21AM

      by Reziac (2489) on Tuesday April 29 2014, @02:21AM (#37473) Homepage

      Money grab indeed. Why are animal rights groups pushing for personhood for animals? Precisely so that animals, suitably represented by some AR-connected lawyer, can sue for damages in court. Who gets a major cut of the money from such a lawsuit? the animal rights group that brought the suit, using their in-house lawyer.

      What this would mean to ordinary people: If your neighbor doesn't like you, and claims (note I did not say proves) that you're not taking good care of your pet (or even *their* idea of what's "good care"), they can sue you on behalf of your pet. If you think ambulance chasing is a spectator sport now, just wait until owning a pet is grounds for a lawsuit. Which of course would help propel the AR goal of eliminating pet ownership.

  • (Score: 5, Informative) by Sir Garlon on Monday April 28 2014, @03:06PM

    by Sir Garlon (1264) on Monday April 28 2014, @03:06PM (#37193)

    Certainly it's not right to keep any animal under conditions like that, but from reading TFA the main reason the ape was locked up all day was its original owner died and presumably no one else knew how to take care of it. Tragic, but stuff like that happens all the time to exotic animals.

    So Wise decided to go straight to a lawsuit, instead of taking the trouble to find out who Tommy (the chimpanzee)'s new owner was and asking that individual to turn the animal over to a rescue shelter.

    Ironic that this lawyer's name is Wise, because his approach certainly isn't. An appeal to compassion might have worked if he had bothered to try: instead he chooses to invent legal personhood for primates and fight a 10-year court battle. If he had asked nicely then the chimpanzee would probably be out of that dungeon right now.

    --
    [Sir Garlon] is the marvellest knight that is now living, for he destroyeth many good knights, for he goeth invisible.
    • (Score: 2) by Techwolf on Monday April 28 2014, @03:12PM

      by Techwolf (87) on Monday April 28 2014, @03:12PM (#37202)

      Unlike me(Yes, I am admitting guilt here), you read TFA and found out the summary was somewhat misleading. Congrats for breaking tradation of posting before reading TFA. :-)

    • (Score: 2) by Reziac on Tuesday April 29 2014, @02:30AM

      by Reziac (2489) on Tuesday April 29 2014, @02:30AM (#37480) Homepage

      There's money in lawsuits. There's no money in doing the sensible thing here. (See my post above for more on that.)

      And very likely the chimp was locked up because adult chimps are fucking *dangerous*, unpredictably so, even to their 'friends'. It was probably locked up in the only cage that would hold it. (They're also fucking STRONG.)

      • (Score: 2) by Sir Garlon on Tuesday April 29 2014, @11:53AM

        by Sir Garlon (1264) on Tuesday April 29 2014, @11:53AM (#37603)

        Regarding how dangerous the adult chimp is, yes, when I said the new owner probably doesn't know how to take care of it, I meant he probably doesn't know how to open the cage door without getting his face bitten off and his arms ripped out of their sockets and used to club him to death.

        --
        [Sir Garlon] is the marvellest knight that is now living, for he destroyeth many good knights, for he goeth invisible.
  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by wonkey_monkey on Monday April 28 2014, @03:09PM

    by wonkey_monkey (279) on Monday April 28 2014, @03:09PM (#37196) Homepage

    Yes, if the chimp in question is capable of reading, understanding, and signing all the paperwork involved and of instrucing their representatives.

    Otherwise (so, in all such cases), no. There are laws against mistreating animals; use those to prosecute these people and have them thrown in jail or at the very least banned from keeping animals.

    --
    systemd is Roko's Basilisk
    • (Score: 1) by DrMag on Monday April 28 2014, @07:41PM

      by DrMag (1860) on Monday April 28 2014, @07:41PM (#37366)

      While I get what you're trying to say, the specific qualifications you chose here happen to have an unfortunate precedent [wikipedia.org] (and a quite detestable one, at that).

  • (Score: 2) by tangomargarine on Monday April 28 2014, @03:11PM

    by tangomargarine (667) on Monday April 28 2014, @03:11PM (#37201)

    No. Emphatically no. This nonsense about trying to give monkeys voting rights etc. etc. is just too ridiculous.

    Yes, people who develop makeup using them should I suppose not be large, flaming assholes, but there are other ways to fix that.

    --
    "Is that really true?" "I just spent the last hour telling you to think for yourself! Didn't you hear anything I said?"
  • (Score: 1) by Oligonicella on Monday April 28 2014, @03:15PM

    by Oligonicella (4169) on Monday April 28 2014, @03:15PM (#37206)

    Chimps have also viciously and without provocation attacked, maimed, disfigured and killed humans. They should then be charged and perhaps executed for their crimes? I'm sure Wise and troop would raise strident voices against that.

    And let's be clear. Tommy didn't sue, other sued on his behalf. This is more similar to a class action suit.

    I happen to think people abusing animals like this should be prosecuted, but to grant legal equivalence to a human is a very bad step. End it where? Earthworms? Laughable, but similar things have been done by the EPA to protect minnows.

  • (Score: 0, Troll) by That_Dude on Monday April 28 2014, @03:15PM

    by That_Dude (2503) on Monday April 28 2014, @03:15PM (#37208)

    IMHO no animal should be put in a cage - zoos and aquariums included. If you are inclined to disagree, go get locked up in one yourself and then comment about it.

    • (Score: 2) by Thexalon on Monday April 28 2014, @03:38PM

      by Thexalon (636) on Monday April 28 2014, @03:38PM (#37233)

      I am inclined to disagree:

      1. Some animals are dangerous and should be controlled so that people don't die. If you are inclined to disagree, go swimming with great white sharks or run around with a tiger and then comment about it.

      2. Zoos and aquariums are moving towards giving animals more freedom and something closer to their natural habitat than they once had. The process is expensive and time-consuming, but it's happening, and the end result is that those animals are significantly happier (as far as we can tell) and healthier. A lot of the criticism of zoos from animal welfare groups has in fact had the desired effect.

      3. Zoos and aquariums have often been critical to efforts to save endangered species such as the California Condor. That gives me reason to think that zoos could be on the whole beneficial to animals.

      Basically, animal rights groups continue to criticize the way zoos were 40 years ago, ignoring the fact that zoos now are very different places.

      --
      The only thing that stops a bad guy with a compiler is a good guy with a compiler.
    • (Score: 2) by tibman on Monday April 28 2014, @04:41PM

      by tibman (134) Subscriber Badge on Monday April 28 2014, @04:41PM (#37269)

      I don't think it is so black & white. What about house cats? Should cats only be allowed to roam free and not contained within a house? Does domestication matter? Zoos are the way most people get to see animals. The first time you see a Bobcat or Black bear in the wild is amazing. But the Zoo will give you a far better look, even if it cheapens the experience.

      --
      SN won't survive on lurkers alone. Write comments.
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 28 2014, @04:47PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 28 2014, @04:47PM (#37272)

      I am at a desk instead of out fishing aren't I?

    • (Score: 1) by Oligonicella on Monday April 28 2014, @05:07PM

      by Oligonicella (4169) on Monday April 28 2014, @05:07PM (#37286)

      If, like a guppy, I am oblivious to my situation, so what? Don't conflate animal and human awareness, intelligence and give-a-crap about containment.

    • (Score: 2) by VLM on Monday April 28 2014, @07:27PM

      by VLM (445) Subscriber Badge on Monday April 28 2014, @07:27PM (#37357)

      This is beginning to sound like an anti-cubicle rant, but its actually better than open plan, which is like some kind of dog fighting pit, but less humane.

      This vaguely resembles my first "real" job in the 90s, back when they treated us better and we all got cubicles.

      "A rancid milk-musk odor wafted forth and with it the sight of an adult (perl coder), crouched inside a small (cloth)-mesh cell. Some plastic toys and bits of soiled bedding were strewn behind him. The only visible light emanated from a small (CRT monitor) on a stand outside his bars, tuned to what appeared to be (screensaver)."

      You have to consider, if the kind of dirtbag who would put a fellow human being in an open plan were put in charge of animals, what kind of horrors would be unleashed on those poor dumb beasts? Probably look like a slaughterhouse or a dog fighting pit. No, I think a cage is, unfortunately, superior, given the type of "superiors" we're dealing with here.

      Take away the cages and the inmates dream they're being sent to a Hedonism resort, but what they actually get is ...

  • (Score: 2) by Jerry Smith on Monday April 28 2014, @03:17PM

    by Jerry Smith (379) on Monday April 28 2014, @03:17PM (#37211) Journal

    An owner however needs a lot of obligations to make up for that. In this case the original owner passed away and and the new care-taker wasn't fit for the job. Instead of finding a new owner that KNEW what the animal needed, Wise went the only way he knew: to the courts!

    --
    All those moments will be lost in time, like tears in rain. Time to die.
    • (Score: 1) by broken on Tuesday April 29 2014, @08:03AM

      by broken (4018) on Tuesday April 29 2014, @08:03AM (#37557) Journal

      After reading the article (OK, it's rather long so I just skimmed a lot), it seems that Wise's interest isn't interested so much in helping this individual case as he is in establishing a legal precedent that can help more animals in the future. Apparently he thinks this a promising case to bring to help create that precedent.

      I don't expect the courts to be at all sympathetic to his approach, even if they would be likely to rule against the defendant on animal cruelty grounds. But that ambivalence is probably exactly what he's hoping to use to squeeze out the most favorable ruling possible on the issue legal personhood of animals.

  • (Score: 2) by randmcnatt on Monday April 28 2014, @03:25PM

    by randmcnatt (671) on Monday April 28 2014, @03:25PM (#37220)
    The Non Human Rights Projects [nonhumanri...roject.org] has a transcript of the court hearing [nonhumanri...roject.org] and a PDF [nonhumanri...roject.org] is available, as well as a (admittedly somewhat slanted) press release [nonhumanri...roject.org] about the results. They also have PDFs of may of the legal papers filed in the case.
    --
    The Wright brothers were not the first to fly: they were the first to land.
    • (Score: 2) by randmcnatt on Monday April 28 2014, @03:28PM

      by randmcnatt (671) on Monday April 28 2014, @03:28PM (#37223)
      The link to the press releases should be here [nonhumanri...roject.org]. Sorry.
      --
      The Wright brothers were not the first to fly: they were the first to land.
  • (Score: 2) by starcraftsicko on Monday April 28 2014, @03:41PM

    by starcraftsicko (2821) on Monday April 28 2014, @03:41PM (#37237) Journal

    Trolling again?

    My only concern in this story is that the lawyers, wherever they are, went unpaid.

    --
    This post was created with recycled electrons.
  • (Score: 2) by egcagrac0 on Monday April 28 2014, @03:51PM

    by egcagrac0 (2705) on Monday April 28 2014, @03:51PM (#37244)

    So long as our new insect overlords honor this sort of precedent, I, for one, welcome it.

  • (Score: 2, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 28 2014, @03:58PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 28 2014, @03:58PM (#37249)

    This will open the door for cats to begin lounging around law libraries, eventually filing necessary suits and legally taking dominion over all of humanity through our own courts.

    I, for one, welcome our feline overlords, and wish to remind them as a sysadmin, I can be useful in maintaining the databases of hairless apes that will be utilized for labor purposes on catnip plantations.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 28 2014, @05:22PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 28 2014, @05:22PM (#37294)

      Are you insinuating that cats don't already own humanity? You welcome your feline overlords? Have you been living under a rock your whole life?

      • (Score: 2) by Sir Garlon on Monday April 28 2014, @05:42PM

        by Sir Garlon (1264) on Monday April 28 2014, @05:42PM (#37303)

        Obviously this is a human who has not yet been given the honor of serving a cat. We shouldn't look down on him. One day he may prove himself worthy. :-)

        --
        [Sir Garlon] is the marvellest knight that is now living, for he destroyeth many good knights, for he goeth invisible.
  • (Score: 2) by RobotMonster on Monday April 28 2014, @04:59PM

    by RobotMonster (130) on Monday April 28 2014, @04:59PM (#37281) Journal

    I think The Goodies [wikipedia.org] explored this issue quite well in their classic episode, Invasion of the Moon Creatures [youtube.com], otherwise known as "Big Bunny". Expect to see voting rights for vegetables, and Clockwork Orange references via The Tranistorized Carrot.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 28 2014, @06:26PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 28 2014, @06:26PM (#37324)

    I don't know the answers, but... should infant humans have rights? Like apes, they can't speak, read, or understand much.

    What about invalids?

    What if an implant technology were designed that could grant a treesuperhuman intelligence? Would the tree have rights prior to obtaining such an implant?

    • (Score: 1) by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 28 2014, @06:31PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 28 2014, @06:31PM (#37327)

      Here's one interesting place to begin studying this:

      "In The Case for Animal Rights, Regan argues that non-human animals bear moral rights. His philosophy aligns broadly within the tradition of Immanuel Kant, though he rejects Kant's idea that respect is due only to rational beings. Regan points out that we routinely ascribe inherent value, and thus the right to be treated with respect, to humans who are not rational, including infants and the severely mentally impaired." - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tom_Regan [wikipedia.org]

      My interest is piqued by the mention of Kant.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 28 2014, @08:05PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 28 2014, @08:05PM (#37374)

    yes, chimps can sue humans in their court, not human court

  • (Score: 2, Insightful) by lil'wombat on Tuesday April 29 2014, @05:14AM

    by lil'wombat (1664) on Tuesday April 29 2014, @05:14AM (#37525)

    Instead of wasting their time, and the courts time, how about they buy the chimp and set it free?

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 29 2014, @11:36AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 29 2014, @11:36AM (#37598)

    ... only if both parties represent themselves in court.

    After all, if the defendant can't raise a more convincing argument than a chimp, the chimp probably deserves to win...

    On the other hand, these interfering ninnies seeking to represent the chimp without first having secured the chimp's informed consent, ought to be struck off the bar roll...