Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Do you have a heart ?

I closed my eyes and turned my face as the teacher demonstrated the dissection of a frog for some yet another experimental procedure.This was n't the first time I was watching an animal being dissected,infact I have performed dissections on cadavers too, but the sight of the poor, living, frog kicking its legs in despair and writhing in agony as it is malhandled while being transferred from tank to tank before being anesthetized is just too much to watch. It once happened that a frog my friend was dissecting regained conciousness in mid dissection and started kicking its legs,splashing water from the dissection dish all over the place !!!!

Teachers and scientists argue that the dissections are for an educational purpose and that " the use of a few little animals provides us with the knowledge to save the lives of many" but I still feel that the act of using alive organisms for dissections is inhuman and cruel.What possible crime or sin have those poor 'lower class' of living organisms done to deserve being split open or experimented upon ? Does being born with far greater intellect and curiosity than those creatures give man the right to use them for its most inhuman desires ? They are the creations of God as equally as we are.

Flipping through the pages of any Textbook of Physiology,Kinesiology, toxicology etc you will find numerous examples and cases where dogs are given pain stimulants, a tachycardia is induced,viruses are injected or even kidneys are clamped !. Yes, I am a medical student and I know that these experiments have given us valuable treasures of information and knowledge that has helped in the progress of Science and sparked a plethora of ground breaking revelations and researches.But thats not it , over the centuries man has grown to be sadistic.The lust for superiority in knowledge has overshadowed and taken over his more compassionate side.What his 'experimental subjects',as scientists say, go through to satiate their appetite for knowledge is lesser of their concerns and they now dissect, operate,slash, electrocute,imprison and toxicate animals without even the slightest trace of remorse or compunction.

Today man is using animals, next it may start trading the poor, unprivileged cast of people to experiment upon!! for lust has no end, it just grows indefinitely !!

This post was originally posted on my other blog which I'm planning to close down ....


  1. So true.

    Unfortunately people exploit others for their own gain.

    In regards to your last statement, "Next it may start trading the poor, unprivileged cast of people to experiment upon," has already happened. Slavery in the world today, though illegal, is more widespread than ever before in history. Furthermore, many examples exist of humans using others for the sake of experimentation. There's a book about this in American history, "Medical Apartheid: The Dark History of Medical Experimentation on Black Americans from Colonial Times to the Present"

    Definitely suggested for Americans, and maybe others who find the topic interesting.

    But yes, it is a shame how man can take any beautiful thing, be it the earth, animal life, or human life, and exploit it for her own gain.

    Good post.

  2. Yes I have the same sentiment but then again I also see the scientists point of view. Its an ongoing debate.

  3. I also feel sorry for many animals. It's an ongoing debate. In high school, I did research with a professor on rats. We tested nerve impulses when injected with various types of analgesics as well as nerve pain when lower back pain was induced. The experiments showed great results, but my research was disqualified by the president of the consortium because she felt that I was "taught by this professor to hurt animals while in high school" and that it was "ok." I managed to compete through to the international level and there, they made me re-write my abstract and most of my paper to avoid words like "inflicted pain", "induced pain" and etc. They also thought people would come and throw tomatoes and eggs at my poster to show their criticism and disagreement with my work. No one threw anything at me, but many people cared more about the animals and what we did with them, instead of the results it showed. I felt sorry for the animals, too, but felt sorry that only the judges saw value in my work. :(

  4. I have done dissections too. Even though i was good at them, i never liked doing them. Knowing that you are taking a life of a creature just so that you get marks is pathetic. I dont understand why do we have to dissect and i dont buy it will save lives theory.

  5. I agree its an ongoing debate. But scientists should atleast know that they need to keep this practice minimal and not just go on needlessly.

    @Musa - Thanks a lot for letting me know of this book. I'll surely grab hold of it sometime soon.

    @K - I agree with your perspective that experiments with animals do come up with a lot of positive outcomes for the society which a lot of people fail to realize.

    @ Harini - I sucked at diessections ! I just dont have the fine hand skills :) but yeah I guess dissections at school level to view the insides, and see the circulatory system etc dont seem to have any practical value

    @ Raaji - Agreed cent per cent

  6. wow. coming from a medical student, this sounds more convincing than it would have in the words of a layman...

    Also, Najwa, i was once wondering about how we being Muslims perform dissections on dead bodies. I wonder if there is any space for that in Islam. Interestingly, we do it only on those bodies, like you said, which are in a way underprivileged - either their owners were tramps or those who their relatives couldn't never trace.