"my AR pages"-index
Recently we had received an email that says
something like: 'Click here for chance to win 40 lbs.of lobster!'
Now we looked up that company who mails around
that advertisement and they state on their site that they wouldn't take
responsibility for any ads they mail.
So they actually want to avoid people sending
in complaints or protests.
We tried to send an email to the given address
in the ad, but they don't accept any email.
Please send a protest to any company that
offers or makes ads for killing lobsters.
Dear Sir or Madam,
I am writing to you in regard
to an advertisement distributed by your company which promotes a chance to win
40 pounds of lobster. I would like to ask you to cancel the ad for the following
According to University of
Pennsylvania neurobiologist Tom Abrams, lobsters have "a full array of
senses." And Dr. Jaren Horsley, an invertebrate zoologist at the National
Zoo, has found that lobsters have a "sophisticated nervous system,"
which allows them to feel and suffer pain.
Lobsters are commonly boiled
alive, though for some dishes living crabs or lobsters are cut up, and for
lobster mousse, the flesh is scraped out of the live animal. Perhaps most people
see shellfish as cold-blooded creatures that cannot feel pain. This cannot be
taken for granted. Crabs and lobsters in particular have complex nervous systems
and there is a body of scientific research which suggests that they do feel pain
and distress. Oxford University zoologist Dr. John Baker, found that lobsters
dropped into boiling water, showed "powerful struggling movements" for
up to two minutes and he concluded that these were not reflex actions but
indications of pain.
Lobsters carry their young for
9 months and have a long childhood and awkward adolescence. Lobsters use
complicated signals to establish social relationships. Some of them are right
handed, some are left handed. They have been observed walking hand in hand, the
old leading the young.
I also request that you take
responsibility for advertising that your company distributes. I'm not sure yet
about all of the legal details of advertisement distribution responsibility on
the internet, but I will look into that soon. Please don't tell me that you have
no control of such an ad as the one mentioned above when your company, in fact,
distributes it per e-mail.
FOR TAKING ACTION!!!
- ressource is archived if not accesible):
In a recent article in the
Journal of Consciousness Studies (1998, Volume 5, 3) entitled "Consciousness:
A Natural History", Maxine Sheets-Johnstone questions the correctness of
these hierarchical conceptions and of the assumption that "unconsciousness
historically preceded consciousness" in animals. She suggests that
proprioception may be the first evolved form of consciousness. The evolution of
proprioception, she proposes, parallels the evolution of animate forms, such
that from the very beginning of the ability of organisms to move, there was a
need for a kind of flexible responsivity to external stimuli. It is arbitrary,
she argues, to call this responsivity behavioral or cognitive when referring to
'lower animals' and conscious when referring to humans or 'higher animals.' The
fact that this is frequently done has much to do, she claims, with our
brain-centered notions of consciousness that disregard more embodied sensory
abilities. She notes that the first human sense to develop is proprioception (it
develops prenatally with the early development of motor pathways), and it is
through this sense that we initially come to learn to move our bodies and to
feel ourselves. This is a sense that we share with many 'simple' creatures.
Sheets-Johnstone provides a description of the proprioceptive abilities of invertebrates
that makes the assumption that unconscious mechanisms explain the behaviors of
these 'lower animals' look disturbingly ad hoc. In response to Dennett, who
claims that in simple organisms "there is really nothing much to
self-knowledge beyond the rudimentary biological wisdom enshrined in such maxims
as 'When Hungry, Don't Eat Yourself!' and 'When there's a Pain, It's Yours!'"
she questions the parsimony of explaining animal behaviors in terms of such
mechanisms. I'll close with the following quotation in which she makes this
point: "[W]e should ask what it means to say that a lobster will eat
another's claws but that conveniently, as Dennett puts it, it finds eating one
of its own claws unthinkable. Does it mean that there is actually a rule 'Don't
eat your own claws!' wired into the lobster's neurological circuitry? But it is
patently unparsimonious to think that there is such a rule and just as patently
absurd to think that every creature comes prepared with an owner's manual, as it
were, a rulebook replete with what Dennett calls 'maxims'. Such a maxim, for
example would be only one of an indefinitely great number of maxims that a
lobster (or, in analogous terms, any other 'simpler organism') could be said to
carry around in the neural machinery that counts as its 'Headquarters'; 'Don't
try to go on land!' 'Don't try to eat a squid!' 'Shovel in new sand grains after
molting!' 'The large claw is for crushing!' 'The small claw is for seizing and
tearing!' And so on. … What makes eating its own claws 'conveniently
unthinkable' is clearly something other than a rule of conduct. 'Convenience' is
not a matter of an opportune adaptation but of an astioundingly varied and
intricately detailed biological faculty that allows a creature to know its own
body and its own body in movement. … These kinetic cognitional abilities
constitute a corporeal consciousness. … A moment's serious reflection …
discloses a major reason why … sensitivity to movement is both basic and
paramount: no matter what the particular world in which an animal lives, it is
not an unchanging world. Hence, whatever the animal, its movement cannot be
absolutely programmed such that, for example, at all times its particular speed
and direction of movement, its every impulse and stirring, its every pause and
stillness, run automatically on something akin to a lifetime tape" (Sheets-Johnstone,
1998, pp. 274-8). Offering mechanistic explanations for animal behaviors may
reveal more about one's commitment to certain assumptions about the mappings
between certain presupposed biological and psychological hierarchies of
complexity than it does about one's commitment to parsimony of explanation. (http://www.u.arizona.edu/~chalmers/class/596v/week11.txt
- ressource is archived if not accesible)
Rights: Lobsters...Boiling Them Alive Isn't Really Cruel is it?
Posted on Friday, August 02 @ 04:41:35 PDT http://www.anti-ignorance.net/modules.php?name=News&file=article&sid=4
Compared with other animal welfare issues,
the treatment of shellfish has aroused very little effective opposition. They
are commonly boiled alive, though for some dishes living crabs or lobsters are
cut up, and for lobster mousse, the flesh is scraped out of the live animal.
Perhaps most people see shellfish as cold-blooded creatures that cannot feel
pain. This cannot be taken for granted. Crabs and lobsters in particular have
complex nervous systems and there is a body of scientific research which
suggests that they do feel pain and distress. Oxford University zoologist Dr.
John Baker, found that lobsters dropped into boiling water, showed "powerful
struggling movements" for up to two minutes and he concluded that these
were not reflex actions but indications of pain.
Alternative cooking methods, claimed to be
humane, have been put forward by animal welfare organizations. They involve
precise techniques of piercing, cutting or freezing which quickly kills the
animals, or stun them so that they allegedly feel no pain, immediately before
boiling or chopping up.
But even if these methods - which some
experts do not accept as humane were universally adopted, shellfish would still
have endure often cruel forms of trapping, transport and storage. Traps lost on
the seabed or washed ashore onto inaccessible beaches leave their victims
trapped indefinitely. Crabs and lobsters are often transported in densely packed
containers and stored in overcrowded tanks with their claws tied.
If you believe that these cruelties should
be banned, please write to your M.P.
The American Anti-Vivisection Society