The vulnerability of legal "things"
Litigation

FROM

Kevin Schneider, NhRP Nonhuman Rights Project
November 2017

The systematically overlooked fundamental interests of nonhuman animals are what we aim to protect by securing recognition of their legal personhood and fundamental rights.

A lot has happened since NhRP President Steven M. Wise wrote earlier this week to let you know about the filing of our first elephant rights lawsuit. [Read Torn from their families and forced to perform for humans for decades.]

The good: our legal battle on behalf of chimpanzees Tommy and Kiko continues. On Thursday, I spent a rainy afternoon running around Madison Avenue in Manhattan with 20 pounds of legal papers going from the First Department courthouse to the printshop to the post office and back to the court all to make sure that our latest motion was filed, demanding that the court send Tommy's and Kiko's appeal to New York's highest court, the Court of Appeals. Our chimpanzee clients' personhood deserves to be fully litigated in New York because, as we wrote in our Memorandum of Law, "Personhood determines who lives, who dies, who is enslaved, and who is free." Learn more here.

The bad: As you've likely heard, the Trump administration is considering lifting a ban on importing "elephant trophies" from Africa. As I told FOX's Varney & Co on Friday, we condemn this action, which, like so much else about how we view and treat nonhuman animals, boils down to the self-interest of humans. Visit our blog for a video of my appearance on the show, Steve's comments in The Atlantic, and our statement on the possible reversal of the ban.

The systematically overlooked fundamental interests of nonhuman animals are what we aim to protect by securing recognition of their legal personhood and fundamental rights. Thank you for understanding how important this fight is. Indeed, for the animals themselves, it can mean the difference between life and death.

We'll be in touch soon with further updates on these developments. In the meantime, check out Steve on NPR's Weekend Edition.

Thanks for being part of this historic fight!

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