This essay has been submitted by a student. This is not an example of the work written by professional essay writers.

The Principle of Equality in Accordance to Animal Rights

downloadDownload printPrint

Remember! This is just a sample.

You can get your custom paper by one of our expert writers.

Get custom essay

121 writers online

Download PDF

All Animals Are Equal “… or why the ethical principle on which human equality rests requires us to extend “equal consideration” to animals too “. This principle of equal consideration of interests (ECOI) is a“moral principle” that states one should both include and every affected interests when calculating the rightness in an action and weigh those interests equally. This principle is incredibly well-liked principle in animal ethics. Its outlined was firstly formulated by an Australian philosopher Peter Singer. However, the fame and theoretical significance of this principle has based on utilitarianism approach, and has become a hallmark of many other theories in animal ethics. 

In his book “Animal Liberation” Singer argues that “If the argument for equality was sound when applied to women why should it not be applied to dogs, cats and horses?” I shall disagree with the view that the notion of moral rights ought to be extended to include animals; we need to concern ourselves to the animal’s welfare and their present exploitation by man because they are sentient beings. I shall consider man’s domination and different capacities in comparison to other nonhuman beings and I shall also argue that the principle of equality in accordance to one same capacity of suffering and pleasure consider valid in assigning moral rights to nonhuman animal like human is bogus idea, which can cause further problem in equal consideration of interests that is why it becomes impossible to extend ethical circle towards nonhumans too. 

It is essential to note that Singer and Regan take up the principle, first enunciate obviously by Jeremy Bentham in his prologue to the Principles of Morals and Legislation, that the only capacity which counts in assigning moral rights is the capacity to suffer. Sex, color of skin, rationality, intelligence, and ability to communicate are not applicable in justifying unequal treatment. we cannot assign moral rights based on capacity to suffer, but also other capacitates according to this principle of equality as there are other qualities that attracts our preferences as we do acts and prefer best action in options, for instance “Singer’s ‘all animals are equal’ resolution implies that the pain of a toothache experienced by kitten that is the same intensity as a similar toothache that is experienced by a human child should count the same in social policy calculation. The moral policymaker in Singer’s view would be strictly impartial in handling conflicts of interest of this sort between nonhuman (kitten) and human .If we must choose between imposing a painful toothache on a human child or a slightly greater toothache on a kitten, presumably social policy should slant in favor of a kitten. This result flies in the face of ordinary common sense, but “Singer regards ordinary common sense as a poor guide. Singer’s position does allow that humans generally have complex and rich interests that stem from their complex and rich mental life, and since nonhuman animals have no correspondingly complex and rich interests, the principle of equal consideration for equal interests as Singer interprets it allows for legitimate preference for humans when human and animal interests are in conflict: If a human child has an interest based on various capabilities, and not anything so fine can be attain by a kitten, in that case the high quality of this interest renders its satisfaction more valuable than the satisfaction of interests.

The principle of equality in human beings is baseless without accepting other specie interests ,we approach to homo sapiens equal interests and distinguishing their rights like women liberation and racism for instance ,but the question raise in sympatric human fellows like Singer , Regon and others activists for animals rights always try that nonhuman have rights ,they do suffer and pleasure are universal capacities like human beings is true ,but singer argument on the basis of “preference utilitarianism” the problem with preference utilitarianism is that it takes interests and desires to be the same like Singer argues “pain is pain” that because that animals desire not to have pain that they have interests in the same way that human do, however this is a result of the false equivalence between desire and interests. What does it really mean to have an interest? before equal consideration of the interest we ought to know every specie own interest on the other hand they did not even prescribe the idea of individuality. “For instance why should one have an interest in living if she does not have other types of interests? And how much weight should such an interest in life have if we don’t know the importance of the other interests? Similar considerations also apply to liberty-related interests. : How can we presume that the “same” interest of two beings should count equally? To respond to this question we must tackle the issue of the basis of equality. The basis of equality in the ECOI principle can be a feature of the interest itself or of the individual having the interests is unpredictable, and hurdle in the future for deciding any moral law to animals.

Thomas Hobbes in his book ”leviathan” defines that human beings are selfish by nature and His description of “the state of war”, which is brutish, nasty and short, somehow prescribed the importance of rules and regulations for rational beings will makes rules, because nonhuman animals cannot, Finally it seems that nonhuman animals are not part of such kind of “social contract” that demands rational agency as well as language to spoke for own sake. therefore, in other words if we Human try to make moral laws for nonhumans likes allowing ourselves obliged for good treatment toward animal’s is reasonable, but to listed their rights same to ours seems extraordinary, and somehow impossible, because we are nonhumans, being a member of another specie how we may assure ourselves about animals rights, even nonhumans are incapable to demand. We may know about the signs like studying their behaviors, but it can only help us in dealing with them. “Some animals are the object of the sentimental interest of others. You, for example, love your dog or cat. So those animals that enough people care about (companion animals, whales, baby seals, the American bald eagle), though they lack rights themselves, will be protected because of the sentimental interests of people.” This thought prescribe that animals personally have interests or not or only human species concern with interests for survival,and how is it possible to value other species survival instead of own, if it is a kind of violation of other species right than we must first clear that they having rights or interest which is in conflicts to our own interests.

Our Society progressed with passage of time, and we have had observed changes in which the main contribution is to be considered those human capacities that brought revolution time by time, in which the key task in survival was making of laws for protection and, distinction between right and wrong acts, all those things got possible through capacity of reason in human beings, as ”John Rawls pursues the first, threshold type of strategy in his A Theory of Justice. He proposes that possessing moral personality above a threshold level renders one entitled to the equal basic moral rights of moral persons. The features constitutive of moral personality are a capacity for a conception of the good and for a sense of justice” (dale writer), but the point is that animals which lack of reasons are free in kingdom whatever they do ,for instance some animals eat others, their children’s and even eggs without any fear of punishment by laws, hence humans are only rational creature, who are eligible to live moral lives ,and the most central to the animal question is Descartes’ “distinction between humans and other nonhuman animals based on the possession of a mind and a capacity for conscious thought.” The question in an ordinary mind can be raised that we human need to make laws for them and protect their rights will be good consideration ,but they having rights still unconfirmed ,and we need more investigation to solve this riddle.

Secondly, Language is way to communication and also essential tool to express own thoughts and emotions to other beings, but the nonhuman beings lacks this communication skills which is necessary to demand something but human beings in pain after all, have : a developed language. Like Descartes said “that human can tell each other about their experience of pain in great details, other animals cannot.”

The existence of pain can be feel in other non human animals ,but it depends on “realization “ of pain, I means to put oneself on that stage ,for instance people used animals to carry goods from one place to another ,like donkey ,carrying goods can suffer it due to heavy weigh ,after getting its behavioral gesture we will weigh less ,but we cannot measure the real pain ,in other words there is possibility of pain even in carrying less goods ,but we cannot understand that real pain as member of another specie language in other way also help in cure, therefore a man can deny a kind of tasks that causing suffer to him, others animals cannot express .for example to consider singer’s argument of “Chimpanzee” that they can be thought language is only benefit chimpanzee, but not all others animals.

Lastly, Man’s domination over other species has fact. Human are not advocating this thought because of membership in Homo sapiens, but due to reality they have conformed through different experiments on human beings in comparison to other creatures. One should agree to struggle for demand like moral laws expansion toward nonhuman animals according to The principle of equal consideration of interests which is based on suffering such as we human beings have no right to suffer animal because they have suffered like human beings ,but the problem is that we cannot. Ought to weight their some rights ,which are inappropriate and not in favor of human beings like using animals in experimentation is absolutely right if the subject animals are being treated with cure in the experiment, suppose we are asked about this issue that we should experiment on human or nonhuman ? Majority will pick nonhuman option sustainable,it is not because of specialism at one point, we can considers the objection that if it were shown that plants, too, are capable of suffering (though there seems to be no reason at all for thinking they are), then it would follow that humans would be morally obliged to starve themselves to death rather than cause suffering to sentient beings. Singer replies, ‘If we must inflict pain or starve, we would then have to choose the lesser evil. 

Presumably it would still be true that plants suffer less than animals, and therefore it would still be better to eat plants than to eat animals. On the other hand, if we truly prefer equality, for equal consideration of interest and rights, would not be complicated, and other preferences like what about those capabilities like being rational is no mean to take into consideration. We believe every living things value to live a happy life, but if we try to categorized living beings surely on the top of list human beings would appear that is not because of specialism or domination of specie over others, instead they in real the greatest creation on this earth, no knowledge of science, philosophy or theology can reject this dominancy of homo sapiens over other species.  

All humans have an equal basic moral status. They possess the same fundamental rights, and the comparable interests of each person should count the same in calculations that determine social policy, Neither supposed racial differences, nor skin color, sex, sexual orientation, ethnicity, intelligence, nor any other differences among humans negate their fundamental equal worth and dignity. These platitudes are virtually universally affirmed, but to think about animals under the principle of equal consideration of interest seems to be controversial on the basis of capacity to suffer ,but neglecting other capacitates is weakness of “animal Liberation” which I think is total negation of other capacities that makes humans justifiable in enjoying moral laws.

Remember: This is just a sample from a fellow student.

Your time is important. Let us write you an essay from scratch

experts 450+ experts on 30 subjects ready to help you just now

delivery Starting from 3 hours delivery

Find Free Essays

We provide you with original essay samples, perfect formatting and styling

Cite this Essay

To export a reference to this article please select a referencing style below:

The Principle of Equality in Accordance to Animal Rights. (2022, April 29). GradesFixer. Retrieved May 17, 2022, from
“The Principle of Equality in Accordance to Animal Rights.” GradesFixer, 29 Apr. 2022,
The Principle of Equality in Accordance to Animal Rights. [online]. Available at: <> [Accessed 17 May 2022].
The Principle of Equality in Accordance to Animal Rights [Internet]. GradesFixer. 2022 Apr 29 [cited 2022 May 17]. Available from:
copy to clipboard

Sorry, copying is not allowed on our website. If you’d like this or any other sample, we’ll happily email it to you.

    By clicking “Send”, you agree to our Terms of service and Privacy statement. We will occasionally send you account related emails.


    Attention! This essay is not unique. You can get a 100% Plagiarism-FREE one in 30 sec

    Receive a 100% plagiarism-free essay on your email just for $4.99
    get unique paper
    *Public papers are open and may contain not unique content
    download public sample

    Sorry, we could not paraphrase this essay. Our professional writers can rewrite it and get you a unique paper.



    Please check your inbox.

    Want us to write one just for you? We can custom edit this essay into an original, 100% plagiarism free essay.

    thanks-icon Order now

    Hi there!

    Are you interested in getting a customized paper?

    Check it out!
    Don't use plagiarized sources. Get your custom essay. Get custom paper

    Haven't found the right essay?

    Get an expert to write you the one you need!


    Professional writers and researchers


    Sources and citation are provided


    3 hour delivery