The Fellowship of Life
a Christian-based vegetarian group founded in 1973

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Letters

Animal torture

Sir, - It is not edifying to find your journal repeating the old shallow clichés in defence of vivisection, and even claiming that "the Church holds that it is not sinful and involves no moral law" (Dec.24, p.14).

I know of no official decision of the Church to this effect. It is merely an opinion of theologians, and we know how far from infallibility they are.

Neither the Church nor any authority can permit men to do evil that good may come. It is not long since the supreme authority of the Church refused to compromise this principle in a matter of world-wide concern where theologians were pressing for a permissive decision.

If killing may sometimes be lawful, as you argue, it does not follow that torture may ever be so. To torture a sentient fellow-creature - whether for pleasure, profit, 'information', or any other conceivable reason - is about the ultimate in human or satanic wickedness.

Animals, as far as their sentient nature goes, claim the same consideration as men. It is quite incredible that such an avenue to knowledge as vivisection could be according to the will of a good and merciful Creator.

This is a question of primary moral intuition, which we can decide for ourselves without calling for the opinions of experts.

(Rev) B. Wrighton

The Universe
(7/1/72)

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