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IQ2 Debate: Animal Rights Should Trump Human Interests

Tuesday 3 May proved to be a very fiery evening! We held the second IQ2 Debate of 2016 – Animal Rights Should Trump Human Interests. 

Watch the video of the debate here:


Our spirited speakers were animal lawyer Ruth Hatten, beef industry expert Catherine Marriott, philanthropist Philip Wollen, shark attack survivor Paul de Gelder, ethicist Leslie Cannold and medical researcher James Bourne. They all brought impassioned and rational arguments to the table. Humans adore animals, they all agreed on that, but it came down to an argument of practicality – if animals had rights would it mean a starving family could not kill a cow to survive? Those on the 'for' team argued for species specific rights in order to protect animals from our self interest. Indeed speaker on the 'for' side, Philip Wollen, pointed out that giving animals rights is in the human interest if we wish to live into the future as part of this planet instead of continuing to destroy it. Those on the 'against' proposed that rights were unnecessary when welfare could achieve progress and a better result for all. 

We love animals and we are animals. Most of us want improved welfare for wild, captive, agricultural and domestic creatures. But is elevating animals to share equal rights with humans a leap too far? With a large swing of opinion during the debate, the audience thought so. A poll was taken before the debate, with 44% for the motion, 22% against and 34% undecided. By the end of the evening the audience was 10% undecided, 37% for the motion and a whopping 53% against it. What an evening! 
Take a look at the image gallery from the debate and we look forward to seeing you at the next one – ‘Boomers Owe A Debt To The Young’, more info here.

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