Pig-Human Hybrids are just another form of exploitation
If you’d been thinking recently that we’re lacking in non-human injustice, and that the trillion or so we kill annually really isn’t cutting it anymore, don’t despair – we’re likely to have have pigs with human organs walking around in the near future too.
According to this article in the US Examiner, scientists have grown human cells inside pig embryos as part of an “early step” towards growing human organs in animals for the purpose of organ transplants. Despite this development, scientists seem disappointed that after implanting the human-pig embryos in adult pigs’ wombs, the embryos are not yet fully integrating. Dr. Wu says that after three to four weeks “we find surviving human cells, but they are not integrated and co-developing.” Really? I wonder why – perhaps it’s because they’re not meant to be inside a pig. But given how they’ve experienced “success” with creating rat and mice hybrids (where certain mice have ended up with a rats gallbladder) they seem hopeful that this “breakthrough” will lead to “the growing of human cells, tissues, and organs in animals for use in regenerative medicine in humans.”
Oh, they need to be careful though. As the article states – If too much human DNA is introduced in a pig’s embryo, it could result in a pig with a “human brain.” Imagine that. I suppose that’s when things would get morally problematic, when the pig is deemed to be too human-like for exploitation? Not before then when the animal we’re exploiting is just a sentient being who values his/her life as much as any human, and who possesses the very same fundamental interests in not suffering and continued existence as any normal human? No? Not when the animal in question has preferences, desires and wants that are no less morally valid than our own preferences, desires and wants, but where the animals preferences are valued at zero by being treated as property?
Apparently not. The line for moral significance in our society has been arbitrarily drawn at the feet of our species. That arbitrary line is the reason that people feel justified in consuming animal products, wearing animals, growing human livers in pigs and otherwise using animals as human property.
Veganism is about rejecting the unjust commodification of sentient beings. It is an obligation for anyone who believes that animals have any moral value. Anything less than veganism is acceptance of the prevailing notion that animals are nothing but objects for human use and exploitation.