Ethical obligations to cetaceans: a case study for Singer's animal ethics
A central theme in Singer's work from the ground-breaking book, Animal Liberation, published in 1975 has been a concern for animals. The focus has been on animals living in deplorable conditions such as factory farms and cages or those forced to endure suffering, for example, cattle in transit or animals in laboratories. One area where humans have been slower to subjugate animals is the oceans. Here most animals are unconstrained but they are not immune to the impact of human activities. Fish suffer from human-induced pollution. In The ethics of what we eat (2006, pp.l16-7) Singer and Mason look at the evidence pointing to the capacity of fish to feel pain and conclude that they do have this capacity and can experience pain and distress when caught on a hook or suffocating out of water.
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