humans are animals

The Moral Status of Animals First published Tue Jul 1, 2003; substantive revision Mon Sep 13, 2010 What is distinctive about humanity such that humans are thought to have moral status and non-humans do not? Providing an answer to this … Continue reading

The Moral Status of Animals
First published Tue Jul 1, 2003; substantive revision Mon Sep 13, 2010

What is distinctive about humanity such that humans are thought to have moral status and non-humans do not? Providing an answer to this question has become increasingly important among philosophers as well as those outside of philosophy who are interested in our treatment of non-human animals. For some, answering this question will enable us to better understand the nature of human beings and the proper scope of our moral obligations. Some argue that there is an answer that can distinguish humans from the rest of the natural world. Many of those who accept this answer are interested in justifying certain human practices towards non-humans—practices that cause pain, discomfort, suffering and death. This latter group expect that in answering the question in a particular way, humans will be justified in granting moral consideration to other humans that is neither required nor justified when considering non-human animals. In contrast to this view, many philosophers have argued that while humans are different in a variety of ways from each other and other animals, these differences do not provide a philosophical defense for denying non-human animals moral consideration. What the basis of moral consideration is and what it amounts to has been the source of much disagreement.

The species Homo sapiens share a genetic make-up and a distinctive physiology, but this is unimportant from the moral point of view. Species membership itself cannot support the view that members of one species, namely ours, deserve moral consideration that is not owed to members of other species. Humans are morally considerable because of the distinctively human capacities we possess. But which capacities are only human? There is no activity that is uncontroversially unique to humans. Both scholarly and popular work on animal behavior suggests that many of the activities that are thought to be distinct to humans occur in non-humans. Darwin brought us closer to the animal world, but equally brought animal nature closer to us. (http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/moral-animal/ ).

The notion of personhood identifies a category of morally considerable beings that is thought to be coextensive with humanity. Historically, Kant is the most noted defender of personhood as the quality that makes a being valuable and thus morally considerable. Yet Kant’s view of personhood cannot distinguish all and only humans as morally considerable. Some humans are not persons, i.e. infants, children, people with advanced forms of autism or Alzheimer’s disease or other cognitive disorders—do not have the rational, self-reflective capacities associated with personhood.

More to the point, rationality itself is suspect as a basis for moral right. On one hand, human rationality is bounded by lower level instincts and mechanistic behavior, and on the other, non-humans exhibit behavior that can be deemed moral. Thus morality is orthogonal to rationality. As a matter of fact, individuals that are hyper rational and lack lower level motional control of their behaviors are nor deemed highly moral, but rather are characterized as psychopathic (http://scienceblogs.com/cortex/2010/04/29/psychopaths-and-rational-moral/ ).

Al Dunlap [That would be “Chainsaw” Al Dunlap, former CEO of Sunbeam and notorious downsizer.] effortlessly turns the psychopath checklist into “Who Moved My Cheese?” Many items on the checklist he redefines into a manual of how to do well in capitalism. There was his reputation that he was a man who seemed to enjoy firing people, not to mention the stories from his first marriage — telling his first wife he wanted to know what human flesh tastes like, not going to his parents’ funerals. Then you realize that because of this dysfunctional capitalistic society we live in those things were positives. He was hailed and given high-powered jobs, and the more ruthlessly his administration behaved, the more his share price shot up.

Some models of human behavior in the social sciences assume that humans can be reasonably approximated or described as “rational” entities (see for example rational choice theory, or Downs Political Agency Models). Many economics models assume that people are on average rational, and can in large enough quantities be approximated to act according to their preferences. The concept of bounded rationality revises this assumption to account for the fact that perfectly rational decisions are often not feasible in practice because of the finite computational resources available for making them.

Bounded rationality is the idea that when individuals make decisions, their rationality is limited by the information they have, the cognitive limitations of their minds, and the time available to make the decision (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bounded_rationality ).

If morality is defined in terms of social behavior, non-humans exhibit different moral behavioral modes (http://www.ted.com/talks/frans_de_waal_do_animals_have_morals?%ca&language=en ). Social life may be regarded as a sort of symbiosis among individuals of the same species: a society is composed of a group of individuals belonging to the same species living within well-defined rules. When biologists interested in evolution theory first started examining social behavior, some apparently unanswerable questions arose, such as how the birth of sterile castes, like in bees, could be explained through an evolving mechanism that emphasizes the reproductive success of as many individuals as possible, or why, amongst animals living in small groups like squirrels, an individual would risk its own life to save the rest of the group. These behaviors may be examples of altruism. Revengeful behavior has been reported in non Homo sapiens (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ethology ).

Humans are animals in ways so subtly that we are unaware of it. Humans are subject to the same instinctual drives and influences as other animals are; it’s only human arrogance that would ever lead us to think otherwise. Fifty to seventy percent of the variation between individuals – in intelligence, in personality, in political leanings, or just about any other mental character you care to name – derives from the genes; zero to ten percent derives from the home environment; and the mysterious remainder is due to chance or to non-parental environment. (The Blank Slate: The Modern Denial of Human Nature by Steven Pinker)

The understanding that other people’s emotional states depend on the fulfillment of their intention is fundamentally important for responding adequately to others. Psychopathic patients show severe deficits in responding adequately to other people’s emotion. Psychopaths can teach us a lot about the nature of morality. At first glance, they seem to have perfectly functioning minds. Their working memory isn’t impaired, they have excellent language skills, and they don’t have reduced attention spans. In fact, a few studies have found that psychopaths have above-average IQs and reasoning abilities; their logic is impeccable. But the disorder is associated with a severe moral deficit. (http://scienceblogs.com/cortex/2010/04/29/psychopaths-and-rational-moral/ ).

So what’s gone wrong? Why are psychopaths so much more likely to use violence to achieve their goals? Why are they so overrepresented in our prisons? The answer turns us to the anatomy of morality in the mind. That’s because the intact intelligence of psychopaths conceals a devastating problem: the emotional parts of their brains are damaged, and this is what makes them dangerous.

When normal people are shown violent imagery or other painful stimulus, they automatically generate a visceral emotional reaction. Their hands start to sweat, and their blood pressure surges. But psychopaths feel nothing. When you peer inside the psychopathic brain, you can literally see this absence of emotion. After being exposed to fearful facial expressions, the emotional parts of the normal human brain show increased levels of activation. So do the cortical areas responsible for recognizing faces. As a result, a frightened face becomes a frightening sight; we naturally internalize the feelings of others. The brains of psychopaths, however, respond to these fearful faces with utter disinterest.

I am more inclined to take the position of Schopenhauer. For him, all individual animals, including humans, are essentially the same, being phenomenal manifestations of the one underlying Will. The word “will” designated, for him, force, power, impulse, energy, and desire; it is the closest word we have that can signify both the real essence of all external things and also our own direct, inner experience. Since everything is basically Will, then humans and animals are fundamentally the same and can recognize themselves in each other. For this reason, he claimed that a good person would have sympathy for animals, who are our fellow sufferers (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arthur_Schopenhauer ).

Schopenhauer emphasizes the necessity of finding a basis for Ethics that appeals, not to the intellect, but to the intuitive perception (http://en.wikisource.org/wiki/On_the_Basis_of_Morality/Translator%27s_Introduction ). According to Schopenhauer, the end of Ethics is not to treat of that which people ought to do (for ” ought ” has no place except in theological Morals, whether explicit, or implicit)

El héroe del Metro

Uploaded on Dec 3, 2010
El héroe del Metro salva la vida de un hombre en el metro de Madrid. alcobendasdigital.com

Un policía nacional fuera de servicio se ha convertido en un héroe anónimo al salvar a un hombre que iba a ser arrollado en las vías del Metro de Madrid, después de que éste perdiera el equilibrio en un anden de la estación Puerta del Ángel. Varios viajeros que esperaban en el andén la llegada de un convoy vieron cómo una persona perdía el equilibrio y caía a las vías y empezaron a gritar para alertar al conductor. Al percatarse de la situación, el agente ha corrido a lo largo del andén y se ha lanzado a las vías para arrastrar al hombre fuera de la trayectoria del metro, que no consiguió detenerse a tiempo. La persona que cayó a las vías es un ciudadano español de 41 años que ha resultado herido leve

Uploaded on Dec 3, 2010
El héroe del Metro salva la vida de un hombre en el metro de Madrid. alcobendasdigital.com

Un policía nacional fuera de servicio se ha convertido en un héroe anónimo al salvar a un hombre que iba a ser arrollado en las vías del Metro de Madrid, después de que éste perdiera el equilibrio en un anden de la estación Puerta del Ángel. Varios viajeros que esperaban en el andén la llegada de un convoy vieron cómo una persona perdía el equilibrio y caía a las vías y empezaron a gritar para alertar al conductor. Al percatarse de la situación, el agente ha corrido a lo largo del andén y se ha lanzado a las vías para arrastrar al hombre fuera de la trayectoria del metro, que no consiguió detenerse a tiempo. La persona que cayó a las vías es un ciudadano español de 41 años que ha resultado herido leve

el héroe de Tigre

Uploaded on Feb 10, 2010
Un joven que circulaba como acompañante en una motocicleta salvó la vida del conductor de una camioneta que quedó atascada sobre las vías del ferrocarril.

El paso a nivel donde se produjo el increíble suceso está ubicado sobre la calle Perú en el límite de las localidades de General Pacheco y El Talar, ambas del partido de Tigre.

La camioneta Fiorino blanca, al igual que otro imprudente automovilista, esquivó la barrera que se encontraba baja y al querer cruzar se le detuvo el motor justo sobre las vías.

La moto con los 2 hombres miraba la situación atentamente. La camioneta parece que arranca pero se vuelve a quedar y uno de los hombres, el héroe de Tigre, se baja y empuja increíblemente la camioneta hacia el otro lado arriesgando su vida por este automovilista inconsciente que puso en riesgo su propia vida y la de terceros.

El tren casi lo arrolla, salva su vida de milagro y queda, los primeros segundos, atónito ante la mirada de los ocasionales espectadores.

Se dio cuenta que volvió a vivir. Festeja con su amigo que lo abraza emocionadamente. Grita a los cuatro vientos Sí, fui yo, yo solito la empujé y lo salvé en lo que se asemeja al festejo de un gol en el fútbol argentino de primera división.

Hasta festeja con los pasajeros del tren.

El inconsciente y el héroe nunca se conocieron.

La cámara del Municipio de Tigre que registró la situación identificó al irrespetuoso automovilista quien es buscado intensamente por el Centro de Operaciones Tigre para que pague por su falta.

Más de 330 cámaras monitorean los diferentes puntos del partido de Tigre las cuales permiten que la Policía detenga delincuentes, detectar incendios y accidentes o bien registrar imágenes de imprudentes automovilistas y un héroe como en este caso.

Uploaded on Feb 10, 2010
Un joven que circulaba como acompañante en una motocicleta salvó la vida del conductor de una camioneta que quedó atascada sobre las vías del ferrocarril.

El paso a nivel donde se produjo el increíble suceso está ubicado sobre la calle Perú en el límite de las localidades de General Pacheco y El Talar, ambas del partido de Tigre.

La camioneta Fiorino blanca, al igual que otro imprudente automovilista, esquivó la barrera que se encontraba baja y al querer cruzar se le detuvo el motor justo sobre las vías.

La moto con los 2 hombres miraba la situación atentamente. La camioneta parece que arranca pero se vuelve a quedar y uno de los hombres, el héroe de Tigre, se baja y empuja increíblemente la camioneta hacia el otro lado arriesgando su vida por este automovilista inconsciente que puso en riesgo su propia vida y la de terceros.

El tren casi lo arrolla, salva su vida de milagro y queda, los primeros segundos, atónito ante la mirada de los ocasionales espectadores.

Se dio cuenta que volvió a vivir. Festeja con su amigo que lo abraza emocionadamente. Grita a los cuatro vientos Sí, fui yo, yo solito la empujé y lo salvé en lo que se asemeja al festejo de un gol en el fútbol argentino de primera división.

Hasta festeja con los pasajeros del tren.

El inconsciente y el héroe nunca se conocieron.

La cámara del Municipio de Tigre que registró la situación identificó al irrespetuoso automovilista quien es buscado intensamente por el Centro de Operaciones Tigre para que pague por su falta.

Más de 330 cámaras monitorean los diferentes puntos del partido de Tigre las cuales permiten que la Policía detenga delincuentes, detectar incendios y accidentes o bien registrar imágenes de imprudentes automovilistas y un héroe como en este caso.

Norepinephrine

Norepinephrine (NE), also called noradrenaline (NA) or noradrenalin, is an organic chemical in the catecholamine family that functions in the human brain and body as a hormone and neurotransmitter. The name “noradrenaline,” derived from Latin roots meaning “at/alongside the kidneys,” is more commonly used in the United Kingdom; in the United States, “norepinephrine,” derived from […]

Norepinephrine (NE), also called noradrenaline (NA) or noradrenalin, is an organic chemical in the catecholamine family that functions in the human brain and body as a hormone and neurotransmitter. The name “noradrenaline,” derived from Latin roots meaning “at/alongside the kidneys,” is more commonly used in the United Kingdom; in the United States, “norepinephrine,” derived from Greek roots having that same meaning, is usually preferred.[1] “Norepinephrine” is also the International Nonproprietary Namegiven to the compound.[2] Regardless of which name is used for the substance itself, parts of the body that produce or are affected by it are referred to as noradrenergic.

Norepinephrine is synthesized and released by the central nervous system, and also by a division of the autonomic nervous systemcalled the sympathetic nervous system. In the brain, norepinephrine is produced in closely packed brain cell neurons or nuclei that are small yet exert powerful effects on other brain areas. The most important of these nuclei is the locus coeruleus, located in thepons. In the sympathetic nervous system, norepinephrine is used as a neurotransmitter by sympathetic ganglia located near thespinal cord or in the abdomen, and it is also released directly into the bloodstream by the adrenal glands as sympathetic effector organs. Regardless of how and where it is released, norepinephrine acts on target cells by binding to and activating noradrenergic receptors located on the cell surface.

The general function of norepinephrine is to mobilize the brain and body for action. Norepinephrine release is lowest during sleep, rises during wakefulness, and reaches much higher levels during situations of stress or danger, in the so-called fight-or-flight response. In the brain, norepinephrine increases arousal and alertness, promotes vigilance, enhances formation and retrieval of memory, and focuses attention; it also increases restlessness and anxiety. In the rest of the body, norepinephrine increases heart rate and blood pressure, triggers the release of glucose from energy stores, increases blood flow to skeletal muscle, reduces blood flow to the gastrointestinal system, and promotes voiding of the bladder and large intestine.

A variety of medically important drugs work by altering the actions of norepinephrine systems. Norepinephrine itself is widely used as an injectable drug for the treatment of critically low blood pressure. Beta blockers, which counter some of the effects of norepinephrine, are frequently used to treat glaucoma, migraine, and a range of cardiovascular problems. Alpha blockers, which counter a different set of norepinephrine effects, are used to treat several cardiovascular and psychiatric conditions. Alpha-2 agonistsoften have a sedating effect, and are commonly used as anesthesia-enhancers in surgery, as well as in treatment of drug or alcohol dependence. Many important psychiatric drugs exert strong effects on norepinephrine systems in the brain, resulting in side-effects that may be helpful or harmful.

Stanford’s Robert Sapolsky On Depression

Published on May 25, 2014 (edited for improved sound: noise and stereo issues, and miscellaneous parts taken out) Stanford Professor Robert Sapolsky, posits that depression is the most damaging disease that you can experience. Right now it is the number four cause of disability in the US and it is becoming more common. Sapolsky states […]

Published on May 25, 2014
(edited for improved sound: noise and stereo issues, and miscellaneous parts taken out)

Stanford Professor Robert Sapolsky, posits that depression is the most damaging disease that you can experience. Right now it is the number four cause of disability in the US and it is becoming more common. Sapolsky states that depression is as real of a biological disease as is diabetes.


Neurotransmitters

The neurotransmitter serotonin is involved in regulating many important physiological (body-oriented) functions, including sleep, aggression, eating, sexual behavior, and mood. Serotonin is produced by serotonergic neurons. Current research suggests that a decrease in the production of serotonin by these neurons can cause depression in some people, and more specifically, a mood state that can cause some people to feel suicidal.

In the 1960s, the “catecholamine hypothesis” was a popular explanation for why people developed depression. This hypothesis suggested that a deficiency of the neurotransmitter norepinephrine (also known as noradrenaline) in certain areas of the brain was responsible for creating depressed mood. More recent research suggests that there is indeed a subset of depressed people who have low levels of norepinephrine. For example, autopsy studies show that people who have experienced multiple depressive episodes have fewer norepinephrinergic neurons than people who have no depressive history. However, research results also tell us that not all people experience mood changes in response to decreased norepinephrine levels. Some people who are depressed actually show hyperactivity within the neurons that produce norepinephrine. More current studies suggest that in some people, low levels of serotonin trigger a drop in norepinephrine levels, which then leads to depression.

Another line of research has investigated linkages between stress, depression, and norepinephrine. Norepinephrine helps our bodies to recognize and respond to stressful situations. Researchers suggest that people who are vulnerable to depression may have a norepinephrinergic system that doesn’t handle the effects of stress very efficiently.

The neurotransmitter dopamine is also linked to depression. Dopamine plays an important role in regulating our drive to seek out rewards, as well as our ability to obtain a sense of pleasure. Low dopamine levels may in part explain why depressed people don’t derive the same sense of pleasure out of activities or people that they did before becoming depressed.

Eugen Bertolt Friedrich Brecht

Eugen Bertolt Friedrich Brecht (/brɛkt/;[1][2][3] 10 February 1898 – 14 August 1956[4]) was a German poet, playwright, and theatre director of the 20th century. He made contributions to dramaturgy and theatrical production, the latter through the tours undertaken by the Berliner … Continue reading

Eugen Bertolt Friedrich Brecht (/br?kt/;[1][2][3] 10 February 1898 – 14 August 1956[4]) was a German poet, playwright, and theatre director of the 20th century. He made contributions to dramaturgy and theatrical production, the latter through the tours undertaken by the Berliner Ensemble – the post-war theatre company operated by Brecht and his wife, long-time collaborator and actressHelene Weigel.[5]

BERTOLT BRECHT

– Wer ist Bertolt Brecht? Such Information über ihn.
– Lies den folgenden Text und versuch ihn auf Spanisch zu übersetzen.
– Was kann er bedeuten?

Es gibt Meschen, die kämpfen einen Tag, und sie sind gut.
Es gibt andere, die kämpfen ein Jahr und sind besser.
Es gibt Menschen, die kämpfen viele Jahre und sind sehr gut.
Aber es gibt Menschen, die kämpfen ihr Leben lang:
Das sind die Unersetzlichen.

Bertolt Brecht

– Wer ist Bertolt Brecht? Such Information über ihn.
– Lies den folgenden Text und versuch ihn auf Spanisch zu übersetzen.
– Was kann er bedeuten?

Es gibt Meschen, die kämpfen einen Tag, und sie sind gut.
Es gibt andere, die kämpfen ein Jahr und sind besser.
Es gibt Menschen, die kämpfen viele Jahre und sind sehr gut.
Aber es gibt Menschen, die kämpfen ihr Leben lang:
Das sind die Unersetzlichen.

Bertolt Brecht

Días y Flores

Published on Oct 6, 2012

Días y Flores es el primer álbum oficial del cantautor cubano Silvio Rodríguez.En España, debido a la dictadura franquista hubo que cambiar el nombre del disco por Te Doy una Canción, ya que se censuraron los temas “Santiago de Chile” y “Días y Flores” (este último daba el nombre al disco); esas canciones se sustituyeron por “Madre” y “Te Doy una Canción”. Al

Published on Oct 6, 2012

Días y Flores es el primer álbum oficial del cantautor cubano Silvio Rodríguez.En España, debido a la dictadura franquista hubo que cambiar el nombre del disco por Te Doy una Canción, ya que se censuraron los temas “Santiago de Chile” y “Días y Flores” (este último daba el nombre al disco); esas canciones se sustituyeron por “Madre” y “Te Doy una Canción”. Al

Mujeres

Published on Oct 7, 2012

Mujeres es un álbum del cantautor cubano Silvio Rodríguez. Se trata de un disco de canciones de amor grabadas de manera acústica,a guitarra y con arreglos simples. Sin embargo, a diferencia de su anterior disco, Al Final de Este Viaje, aquí realiza más juegos con las guitarras, con arpegios y solos más elaborados.Temas:1- “Mujeres” – 4:182- “En Estos Días” – 2:433- “

Published on Oct 7, 2012

Mujeres es un álbum del cantautor cubano Silvio Rodríguez. Se trata de un disco de canciones de amor grabadas de manera acústica,a guitarra y con arreglos simples. Sin embargo, a diferencia de su anterior disco, Al Final de Este Viaje, aquí realiza más juegos con las guitarras, con arpegios y solos más elaborados.Temas:1- “Mujeres” – 4:182- “En Estos Días” – 2:433- “