Letter: Don’t support animal testing
With more than 500 home and personal care companies now marketing products without testing on animals, it is hard to believe that some companies still use animals in painful tests. For example, the Draize Eye Test confines albino rabbits in stocks and drips chemicals into their forced-open eyes. The animals then suffer redness, bleeding ulcers and even blindness. Skin irritant tests clamp noxious substances on the bare skin of rabbits, rats and mice with observation made of swelling, itching, soreness and inflammation.
Using animals to conduct safety testing is fraudulent science because differences between species and even between individual animals of the same species lead to unreliable results. Currently, there are many alternatives to animal testing for cosmetic products and ingredients, such as Epiocular, Episkin and Eyetex, to name a few.
Many health charities fund tests on animals that include starving, crippling, burning, poisoning and cutting animals open to study diseases that affect humans, not animals. The experiments are cruel, unreliable and often dangerously misleading. Compassionate charities focus their research where the best hope of treatment lies: with humans. Human volunteers, clinical studies, autopsy reports and statistical and epidemiological analysis provide useful data on people with diseases and disabilities.
Human cell cultures and tissue studies, in vitro tests, and artificial human “skin” and “eyes” mimic the body’s natural properties and provide scientists with less expensive alternatives to animal tests. A number of sophisticated computer virtual organs also serve as accurate models of human body parts.
Support companies and charities that truly care about animals by not hurting them. For a list of those that don’t use animals and those that still do, log on to PETA.org or visit humaneseal.org. For a local contact, call 224-1361.