Categories: Animal laws

Granting animals legal personalities would allow them to sue humans via a guardian

It would be a gargantuan step for humans to grant animals legal personalities. It would allow them to sue humans with the assistance of a human guardian – an animal advocate and lawyer who would represent the animal or animals in a specially created court.

Giving animals legal personalities. Montage by PoC

In making such a huge step in animal rights it would almost certainly eradicate great swathes of animal abuses across the planet. You can imagine it. If animals were suddenly granted rights to sue humans there’d be millions of civil and criminal cases in courts of every country. The international wild animal body parts and live animal trade, worth billions of dollars annually, would be in a catatonic state of acute panic. It would be chaos. A beautiful chaos in all the right places.

The greedy shits who exploit animals for financial profit would be hauled into international courts, found guilty and fined millions of dollars to contribute to conservation and they’d be imprisoned for many years.

It could be argued that the world is inching towards these sorts of animal rights. Kirsty Brimelow QC tells us in The Times newspaper that Spain has granted personhood rights to great apes. New Zealand has given apes special protections. In India the authorities have ruled that dolphins are ‘non-human persons’.

She correctly says that the Earth, and the wild animals on it, need a voice. There have been three karma events (in my book). One of them is the catalogue of wild fires, hail and sand storms and floods inflicted upon Australians recently. According to the University of Sydney a billion animals have died. This must hurt Australians as they have been busily slaughtering countless numbers of feral cats to protect native species, these very same animals.

Arguably these disasters have been contributed to by climate change caused by the reckless abuse of nature such a extensively mining coal in Australia and selling it to China. And nature reacts to animal abuses such as the mass and indecent slaughter of feral cats, kangaroos and even camels in Australia designed to protect species deemed more important but which have, ironically, been slaughtered by these fires. As I said it is nature’s karma. If humans have a bad attitude towards animals nature bites back.

Giving animals legal personalities would transform our relationship with them and the planet for the better. It would also improve human behaviour. You can force improvements in human behaviour through the law. Let’s do it.

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Michael Broad

Hi, I'm a 71-year-old retired solicitor (attorney in the US). Before qualifying I worked in many jobs including professional photography. I have a girlfriend, Michelle. I love nature, cats and all animals. I am concerned about their welfare.

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