The Public Perceptions Of Animal Research

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Ignorance is bliss. Animal research is one of those topics that, for most of us, we try not to think about. Most people recognize it as a necessity, but few accept it without hesitation. When asked about the subject of animal research people ponder the topic, and then want clarification. “What exactly is animal research?” “Is it animal testing?” “Where is the line between research/testing and cruelty?” The most common phrase I heard was “necessary evil.” We know that is goes on, but we aren’t completely comfortable knowing the details. Most people seemed to operate under the “out of sight, out of mind” mentality. But, once the questions are answered, and we stop skirting around the topic, and really ask ourselves how we feel about it. Where do we fall on the spectrum of acceptance? There have been many studies and poles that look at the public perceptions on animal research. The Gallup survey on Values and Beliefs started collecting data here in the United States in 2001. They ask a simple question: Is medical testing on animals morally acceptable, or morally wrong? And in ten years they have watch the morally wrong numbers climb ten points. There are many reasons why this may be occurring, and one of the bigger drivers of that rise may be the increase in social media. A soapbox for those who want to be heard. Animal protection groups have, very successfully, utilized social media to spread their message. Celebrity endorsements of these groups also fuel the fire of their
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