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Thu Jun 19, 2014, 01:32 PM

Lori Marino: Leader of a Revolution in How We Perceive Animals

Science shows that animals should legally be recognized as persons, Marino argues.

Lori Marino doesn't hide how she feels about animals. Yes, she's a biopsychologist who's spent the past 18 years at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia, delving into the behavior of captive dolphins and measuring the brain size of dead cetaceans. Yes, to become a scientist, she has euthanized lab rats and studied their neural anatomy. And yes, Marino knows that due in part to medical research on animals, she overcame a life-threatening illness (which she chooses not to reveal) and is alive today.

Still, Marino's experiences haven't given her that cool, objective gaze that people sometimes adopt when looking at other creatures. Instead she's used her scientific objectivity to become one of the foremost advocates of animal personhood, and at a time when a tectonic shift is changing how we regard and think about nonhuman species. It's Marino lawyers with the Nonhuman Rights Project called on to support their argument that a privately owned and caged chimpanzee, Tommy, is entitled—as a legal person—to freedom, a case recently presented to a county court in New York State.

It's Marino the producers of the documentary Blackfish, about the orca Tilikum who killed his trainer at SeaWorld, turned to for an explanation of the neural underpinnings of cetacean intelligence, and why these animals suffer and sometimes go mad in captivity. And it's Marino who launched a public crusade to end the use of captive dolphins for entertainment and research, an effort that struck many as quixotic. Yet two weeks ago the National Aquarium in Baltimore, Maryland, announced that it was considering retiring its eight dolphins to a seaside sanctuary.


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Reply Lori Marino: Leader of a Revolution in How We Perceive Animals (Original post)
undeterred Jun 2014 OP
Erich Bloodaxe BSN Jun 2014 #1

Response to undeterred (Original post)

Thu Jun 19, 2014, 02:57 PM

1. I'd certainly be in favour of legislation to recognize

cetaceans and at least a few types of primates as non-human persons, and make it illegal to capture, imprison, or kill them.

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