He announced we would begin with a quiz. Questions were asked on screen, mostly related to our internal. However we were then asked if we agree with the use of “animal models”. A being strongly
agree, B agree, C don’t know, D disagree and E strongly disagree. He asked us to write down the results. They are as follows: A-4 B-10 C-5 D-7 E-4. He said that there was no wrong or right answer and that we would be asked the same question at the end of the day to see if anything had changed. He also said he was not trying to make us give a particular answer, simply trying to educate us.
We were each given a booklet. Under ‘programme aims’ I noticed somethings strange, “develop your understanding of what a scientific model is and why they are valuable in scientific research”already on the second page I had a biased, not to mention, completely false statement forced upon me. If what
he said was true, that he was not trying to get us to agree with animal testing, then why was the word valuable used. Animal testing is not valuable; it is torture and produces completely false results because animals are so different to us.
The research being undertaking at the Liggins Institute currently is focused on how the fetal environment affects the individual in later life. An example of a “scientific model” was given where
pregnant rats were fed a high fat, nourishing or under nourishing diet. The fat percentage of each group of offspring was then compared. He tried to justify this experiment by telling us that the rats chose to eat the food. He failed to mention the rats were most likely murdered after the data was obtained. And that unlike humans used in experiments these rats did not volunteer and sign a contract. This particular example was also used because it is mild compared to most where the animal suffers extreme pain or death.
At the end of the day we were again asked the question regarding “animal models” and again asked to note down the resultsThey are as follows: A-8 B-16 C-2 D-2 E-2. This shows the duplicitous and sanitized nature of his statements worked and how people are so easily manipulated to believe something even though it comes from only one biased source.
Three scientists arrived nearing the end of the day to speak to us. One man, who worked at the University of Auckland, shared his current research into a cure for ‘lazy eye’ in individuals over 12 years of age. He believes that stimulating the brain with electrodes helps the eye recover focus. This was done on animals, and that he might be importing monkeys from Singapore to work with soon. My disgusted face did not match that of my peers who had so happily accepted this scenario.
The Liggins Institute pretends to further high school students education, when it fact it corrodes their minds with incorrect information, imposes disgusting ethics and removes their empathy which is after all what separates us from animals.