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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 3/31/10

Need to Go to Mars?

By       (Page 1 of 1 pages)   6 comments
Message Suzana Megles

With all the problems we have on planet Earth - should we at this time contemplate spending $1.75 million dollars of taxpayer money to fund a study, even when NASA says it is needed if the agency ever hopes to send a mission to Mars?

I'm sorry, but the idea of reaching Mars one day really just doesn't excite me. Maybe one day it will. Maybe one day we will run out of space and we might have to consider finding new worlds and Mars may be one of them. But I don't
see the urgency just now and I certainly hope that should this come to pass, we will no longer have to subject primates to the cruel experimentations so often performed on them in the past and which is being contemplated yet
again by NASA. AAVS tells us that there are alternatives to using live animals. Why aren't they exploring them?

NASA wants to subject 18-28 squirrel monkeys to radiation while being restrained in primate chairs, forced to perform certain tasks, and then tested for cognitive function. Being restrained in a chair - for how long? I wish they
would consider for once the sufferings these poor monkeys would entail but for too long they have not. Many of us have read about similar cruel experiments and we will never agree to their need.

Re using the monkeys in this research study American Anti-Vivisection notes "...studies show that captivity and restraint alone can cause brain impairment, making such experiments unreliable in predicting the effects of radiation on humans."

They have asked us to write NASA to halt its plan to use monkeys in radiation experiments. These will cause much unnecessary animal suffering. This data cannot be translated to humans -therefore we would be wasting taxpayer dollars.

AAVS provided a well-written message we were urged to send as well as to personalize it if we chose. I found no need to express my sentiments because theirs were so on target. This is the message I and I hope countless thousands and thousands sent to Mr. Charles Bolden of NASA:

"Although I support the mission of NASA, I was shocked to learn that the agency plans to fund radiation experiments involving squirrel monkeys.

I am opposed to these experiments because they are inherently cruel. Past studies have shown that primates exposed to gamma rays experience depressive behavior, convulsions, diarrhea, vomiting, and even death.

In addition, because humans are biologically different from monkeys, the data gleaned from the experiments will not be readily transferable.

Viable, non-animal research methods are available and should be used instead of these sentient creatures who feel pain and have the ability to suffer.

Please halt these inhumane experiments immediately."

If you agree, please go the American Anti-vivsection Internet site for information to send your thoughts to NASA.

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I have been concerned about animal suffering ever since
I received my first puppy Peaches in 1975. She made me take a good look at the animal kingdom and I was shocked to see how badly we treat so many animals. At 77, I've been a vegan for the (more...)
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