American law "does nothing to genuinely protect animals, nor does it recognize their true value and special place in our homes and within our families," two animal rights authorities say.
"Our legal system just does not recognize the bond between people and their companion animals, and when that bond is severed, it completely fails to compensate for that loss," write law professors Diane Sullivan and Holly Vietzke of the Massachusetts School of Law at Andover.
Furthermore, they contend, torture of laboratory animals is as widespread as it is unnecessary, and they question "the propriety of treating millions of animals like property for research at the hand and whim of the researcher." Proponents of testing argue that animal research is "necessary" and/or "justified." "To advance this position requires a rationale that a dog, cat, or chimp is the equivalent of an innate piece of property."
With the advancement of science and technology, Sullivan and Vietzke continue, "it is now possible to conduct testing without having to use live animals. Human tissue, donated from human cells, can be grown in test tubes."
Moreover, they assert, computers can use simulation software to virtually conduct tests, even incorporating "hundreds of variables" to simulate various human conditions and the effects the drug or product would have on them.