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Tommy the Chimp finds no relief in court

Tommy the Chimp finds no relief in court

Not a “person.”

Around this time last year we covered the story of the lawsuit seeking release of a chimpanzee via a habeas corpus petition at College Insurrection, as part of the greater Nonhuman Rights movement, Yale to hold Non-Human Rights Conference:

There were plenty of headlines about a lawsuit seeking a court ruling that four captive Chimpanzees were persons and entitled to

“the right to bodily liberty via a writ of habeas corpus. The suits, filed in New York Supreme Court, are based on scientific evidence proving that chimpanzees are self-aware and autonomous, and therefore entitled to be recognized as “legal persons” with certain fundamental legal rights.”

On December 6-8, 2013, Yale is hosting a conference devoted to the rights of non-humans.

Now the ruling has come down (h/t Gabriel Malor):

The Non-Human Rights Project says it will appeal to N.Y. State’s highest court, the Court of Appeals.

[Featured Image: Non-Human Rights Project Facebook]


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CNN: “NY Court Decison Sparks Riots in The Hundred Acre Woods”

Some people must have WAY too much time on their hands… Or maybe they’re just insane. SMH

TrooperJohnSmith | December 5, 2014 at 11:58 am

Just after “animal rights” comes a demand to let them vote.

That sure would make the election for “dog catcher” interesting.

I’m always struck by the irony involved in stuff like this. It signals just how amazingly successful our culture is. People can so easily provide for the necessities of life that they have the luxury to engage in such perverse obsessions as “non-human rights”.

My favorite illustration of this is the simple observation: in modern America, people can worry if Polar Bears have enough ice to live on. Not long ago, all we’d worry about is how to cook one.

Of course, our success, provided in no small part by our predecessors, may also be our downfall.

    gregjgrose in reply to Ragspierre. | December 5, 2014 at 1:23 pm

    “Throughout history, poverty is the normal condition of man. Advances which permit this norm to be exceeded — here and there, now and then — are the work of an extremely small minority, frequently despised, often condemned, and almost always opposed by all right-thinking people.

    Whenever this tiny minority is kept from creating, or (as sometimes happens) is driven out of a society, the people then slip back into abject poverty.

    This is known as “bad luck.”

    ― Robert A. Heinlein

I think we should not only grant them “personhood”, but also replace most of our Congress Critters with them. Surely they couldn’t do a worse job than our present batch of pols!


Sorry Tommy. Planet of the Apes was not a documentary.

    platypus in reply to Henry Hawkins. | December 5, 2014 at 1:50 pm

    That was my first thought – that somebody watched Rise of the Planet of the Apes a few times too many. I have to admit that the ape’s ‘evolution’ in that movie was about the best special effects I can remember, the plaintiff (next friend) in this action should have checked the roster of the Screen Actors Guild to make sure the movie ape was union.

    No SAG card with dues paid up – no acting role.

Go ahead, try to get this monkey song out of your head:

Monkeys, always a comedy gold mine. Just like congress.

Seems to me this is a back-door attempt to make eating meat illegal. The court ruled against it this time, but who knows what crazy people might be on the bench in the future.

This is a terrible decision.

Next thing you know, they’ll try to take away the civil rights from the deer roaming around the Cornell campus, and their right to free tubal ligations.

Whew! That was a close one. Can you imagine when the monkey’s lawyers demand:

Equal Opportunity Housing
Social security & medicare starting at age 8
Affirmative Action – We opressed them for years!
Inter-Species marriage rights

If Tommy is being mistreated, wouldn’t existing laws about animal cruelty protect him? There’s no need to carve out new absurd animal rights.

“self-aware and autonomous, and therefore entitled to be recognized as “legal persons””

We have plenty of those running wild in society today.

I wonder. Would these same petitioners ever abort a monkey?

Establishment of human-animal equivalence is an article of faith that begs the question of motive. People will always discover emergent patterns through correlation and intuition when it confirms their interests. While I support ethical treatment of animals, the effort to degrade intrinsic value of human life is a concern.

I don’t know…. I am kind of on the fence about this one. While I don’t think Tommy and a bunch of his friends, given enough time, could write the entire works of Shakespeare, I have no doubt that 5 of them, given enough cocaine could put out a pretty good edition of the New York Times.

self-aware and autonomous

What do these have to do with legal person status?

An unconscious person wouldn’t qualify, but he’s still a person.

A patient in a coma, ditto.

Awareness and autonomy are simply irrelevant.

Animal rights people are very aggressive in teaching their philosophy to our school children. That is where the next generation of judges will come from to vote, and possibly approve the rights of animals. There are already lawyers specializing in animal rights.

Midwest Rhino | December 5, 2014 at 5:29 pm

I think therefore I am … an animal.

I converse about right and wrong … so I am, able to vote.

I reason about right and wrong beyond my own interest … so I am a federalist conservative.

Just trying to modernize Descartes. 🙂

Henry Hawkins | December 5, 2014 at 8:18 pm

So… if pets are persons… then pet owners are…. ? I have a dog and two cats, so…

OMG! I’m a slave owner! They were right! I AM a racist bastard!

A monkey in a kangaroo court = justice gone to the birds.

Chimpanzees are not monkeys. Apes can get very offended if you call them monkeys. Ask the Librarian.