The Kind Life is a community around Alicia Silverstone and The Kind Diet where friends, doctors, experts in green living, and members share vegan tips.

Animal Love

Monkeys Are People Too!!!

Seriously, they are almost the same as us. I remember reading this article in National Geographic a while ago that said, “Scientists have sequenced the genome of the chimpanzee and found that humans are 96 percent similar to the great ape species.” Look at how beautiful and amazing and special they are. Please help me help the monkeys and stop NASA!

Something so horrible and sad is happening! NASA is preparing an experiment where they would expose tiny squirrel monkeys to a massive burst of gamma radiation, equal to a three-year journey to Mars and back. You can read further about this at MSNBC, however, I find it upsetting that they only presented one side of this. Not once do they bring up the fact that this type of radiation exposure is so dangerous!

They want to test this out on the monkeys so that if there ever is a mission to Mars, they will have an idea about what the long-term exposure to radiation would do to the human pilots (since monkeys are so close to humans). They have done experiments like this before… And have found that gamma radiation can cause depressive behavior, diarrhea, weight loss, hair loss, open sores, skin hemorrhages, and death. It’s so horrible that they know what the effects are, and they still want to put these monkeys through this.

It’s obvious this is so damaging to the system – just look what the EPA has to say about it. “Because of the gamma ray’s penetrating power and ability to travel great distances, it is considered the primary hazard to the general population during most radiological emergencies. In fact, when the term “radiation sickness” is used to describe the effects of large exposures in short time periods, the most severe damage almost certainly results from gamma radiation.” Additionally, NASA even admits that these experiments will more than likely cause cellular damage. Bottom line, this is VERY bad.

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However, there are non-animal test methods! In fact, there are many alternative methods that have already been declared scientifically valid.

NASA is currently conducting research on space radiation using methods that are more humane and scientifically superior to animal experimentation. In Defense of Animals (IDA) supports the use of Tissue Equivalent Plastic to simulate human skin and monitor its properties on the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter. NASA’s anatomical model – Fred the Phantom Torso – is an impressive radiation detector and could be included on Moon and Mars probes as well as the International Space Station. IDA is also aware that NASA constantly collects data from the radiometric equipment integrated into spaceships and spacesuits. I hope that NASA will use these innovative methods on future lunar flights and planned lunar base – in an atmosphere that more closely resembles deep space.

For more information on testing methods that don’t involve animals visit the Humane Society or the European Center for the Validation of Alternative Methods.

But we can try to stop this! In Defense of Animals (IDA) and the International Primate Protection League (IPPL) are trying hard to stop NASA from irradiating these monkeys. Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL)– a lab run by the Department of Energy – is supposed to run the radiation portion of the experiment… But has not decided yet whether or not they will do it. The experiment is being reviewed by the BNL’s safety, science, and animal welfare committees, so send them a message now and tell them not to run these tests!

You can send them a message by following this link, and telling the Director of BNL and the Secretary of Energy NOT to perform these experiments!

We can let them know that we do support their efforts to collect radiation data using modern and humane methods. Especially because animal species differ from one another in so many ways, and it is highly unlikely that animal research will produce results that will be accurate for humans.

Another option is to contact NASA through PCRM’s website HERE.

Let’s try to help save these innocent monkeys! Post this to your facebook, tweet about it, and email it to everyone you know who would want to help the monkeys.

And if you want to educate yourselves further about animal testing, I recommend looking at these publications offered at In Defense of Animals.

We can make a difference!

UPDATE: If you are looking for more info about this issue, please read Noah Gittel‘s comments below. He is a Research and Education Programs Coordinator at PCRM, and he really knows his stuff!

 

Top Photo: Lewis Roberts

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