Blogging About Critters Since 2007

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Why Humans Are the Only Ones with Rights

Someone posted a question about why humans have human rights and whether they should considering that others do not. I responded. I'm reposting what I wrote as I rarely do any original writing for this blog anymore. It's not profound, but an opinion.
Please note the vast generalizations here, but, in the areas of religion, at least orthodox religion and there are varying levels of how fundamental you want to go, there is only one species with a soul and that is the human. We are made in God's image. Therefore, we are the only ones who matter and the only ones who should have rights. In the matter of science, and there are varying levels of this viewpoint, the human is the most advanced of creatures. we are at the top of the food and evolutionary ladder. We are the ones with the thumb, logical thinking, future planning abilities, the ability to self-analyze, worry, etc. Therefore, we are the only ones who should have rights.

Of course, there are also religious and science types that would argue that it is those very qualities that do not make us superior, but rather stewards. That it gives us more responsibility than simple dominion. However, then you get into the argument of whether creatures only deserve stewardship at the species level or the individual level. Do you care about the stray dog or the almost extinct tiger? What laws should be in effect, blah, blah (I could go on and on. )

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