- Politics and Social Issues
One Human Life
What is the value of a human life? Today, it would appear to be not much. We have placed far greater importance on so many other things in this world that we have created or value and as a result human life sadly has become expendable. Those of you familiar with the work I perform know that I have dedicated my life to medical research (both human and veterinary), the fighting of disease, and especially in regards to saving the lives of countless millions of children. It is not an easy battle. As the movie Contagion has pointed out, it will not take that much to devastate mankind. That wasn’t science fiction, more like science fact because if we do not remain diligent and vigilant, continue to fight the war against disease, then we will lose as easily as that movie demonstrated. Having spent most of my time in China the past two years, it is surprising to me that certain groups in New Zealand have gone to considerable efforts recently to paint me as there poster boy for inhumane animal testing practices. Their false accusations were based on events that I certainly wasn’t responsible for, nor connected to, and most definitely not even at the sites at the times they have attempted to expose. But that is the nature of their campaign. Through harassment, intimidation and threats, they hope to shut down medical research because in their limited capacity to think, they cannot appreciate the bigger picture, nor do they have any compassion for their fellow man. I’ve never hidden my identity, always been open about the work I’ve done, with the expressed hope that by being an open book, even those on the lunatic fringe of animal rights fanaticism will come to realize that they are mistaken in their beliefs. Sadly, by providing them with a face and a name to associate medical research with, I have given them someone to express their madness directly to and the media has loved every minute of it. Truth, honesty, integrity, what do any of those words have to do with our media today? Though they have full knowledge that I have been in China for two years, not even permitted access to the facilities I once worked at throughout that time, they have intentionally withheld and distorted that information so that they can continue to inflame a naïve and reality television absorbed public. How ironic that even though entitled reality TV, these are the most staged and orchestrated shows on air and a large percentage of the public actually believes they are true and honest depictions of life around us. I cannot change the minds of those that are so easily misled by the media but I can hope to tell you something of the value of a human life and perhaps in doing so, make you think twice about this world with the hope that you will then pass on this open letter to everyone you know so that the truth can be told.
If You Believe in God
In the first book of the bible, Genesis, it teaches us that God has sanctified human life and expects us to value it above all else. That the saving of one life is no different from saving a million and we must always strive to do so, no matter what the cost and no matter what the personal burden. Even the lives of sinners are to be valued as we learn from the story of Sodom and Gemorrah as Abraham negotiates on their behalf, bargaining with YHWH in order to prevent their destruction. Yet, God also challenges Abraham's belief in the sanctity of human life by instructing him to sacrifice Isaac, his beloved son, to prove that he loved YHWH above all else. A terrible challenge and one which those of us with understanding know that God had no intent to let Abraham do so. Yet, nonetheless Abraham was willing to compromise his own beliefs to demonstrate his faithfulness. The interpretations of this story by the rabbis and religious leaders of other faiths for the most part is incorrect in their assertion that it was God's way in instructing man that a true believer will make any sacrifice to show his faith. That was not what God wanted at all. In actuality, it was about YHWH teaching mankind that no God, no matter how petty or how powerful would ever demand the shedding of a human life in payment or demonstration of faith. He was instructing Abraham that the old ways were gone, over, banished, stricken form the books forever. Human sacrifice would no longer be permitted amongst His believers, for a loving and kind God would never demand such a despicable act. It was the Lord's way of saying to mankind that the value of a single human life outweighed even the authority of God. If there was to be a sacrifice, then it should only be through lesser animals such as the ram that was provided providentially as you all know from the story.
Man’s use of animals was made clear from the time of the Garden of Eden when God placed all of the animal Kingdom at the feet of man, saying that all these would be at his disposal but he must never abuse that authority or privilege. The use of animals for the benefit of mankind must be through necessity and requirement and never through maliciousness or wanton destruction. Abel's sacrifice of animals from his flock was valued by God above the harvest of Cain because Abel was prepared to suffer greater loss and emotional distress in securing YHWH's continued blessing far more than Cain who sacrificed very little when he gave up but a miniscule fraction of the bounty that the earth provided to him. And when Cain slew Abel, we learn that even then God's commandment that a man who kills another man shall be put to death does not necessarily mean capital punishment in every case. That Cain's banishment, his separation and exile from his family and from God constituted a spiritual death equal to and possibly exceeding that of a physical death.
When it comes to human life, God has made it abundantly clear that nothing else comes close in value and we must preserve it at all costs. The sacrifices of the Temple, the oxen, cattle, sheep, goats, hens and pigeons were all at man's disposal in exchange for the securing of mankind's continued health and existence. God has repeatedly instructed us that we must always be aware of this distinction between animal and human life and that at no time should we be willing to suffer the loss of human life when we have the capability to preserve it, even if it happens to be at the expense of lower orders of animals.
If You Believe in Science and Medicine
For those of you that may not know of my professional career, I am a toxicologist, a preclinical specialist that has worked three decades in saving the lives of millions of children around the world. I've worked on such vaccines as the component pertussis vaccine, the MMR vaccine, DPT, Rotavirus, meningococcal, etc. I’ve sat in rooms with the medical greats such as Jonas Salk and Linus Pauling, in awe of their work, yet they in turn were impressed by the work done by my team at Sanofi-Pasteur. That was part of their greatness. I've tested new drugs that are now the antibiotics, the anti-inflammatories and the anti-arthritics that many of you are now using to live a normal and pain free life. I can look at countries like Africa where I worked on vaccines that are no longer dependant on the cold-chain and see the faces of thousands upon thousands and children that would not be alive today if it were not for that development. I have a proud track record, working in the background of scientists that have gone on to win major awards and accolades for their medical miracles, even though none of that would have been possible without the work I and my colleagues provided. Very few of them have ever been gracious enough to acknowledge the preclinical scientists, whom without our efforts in designing animal models to demonstrate safety and efficacy, their discoveries never would have made it to market in order to save all those millions of lives.
So when I find myself at the centre of a media storm because those that love animals more than they love their children gain control of the news and television stations with their distorted and fanatical beliefs, then I am aghast at how much this world has changed where we would prefer to let our fellow men die rather than sacrifice the lives of even a few animals in order to preserve our greatest treasures which is and must always be our children. If I was faced with the dilemma of letting my own personal dog or cat be used in an experiment in order to save the life of my child, I would not hesitate. Anyone that wishes to believe I do not love that dog or cat is a fool. I love them very much, but not to the extent that I love my child or anyone else's child for that matter. And if the sacrifice of 32 dogs on a test means that millions of people and animals as well will benefit from the outcome, then I know I am doing service to mankind but I am also doing YHWH's work, just as he instructed Abraham and later on the family of Aaron. The saving of human life is the ultimate action anyone of us can take and yes, it involves hard decisions but this is one time where the end does justify the means.
We must ensure that we never become overwhelmed by these fringe lunatics, these fanatics, and the ratings absorbed media witch hunters that play upon your emotions, never providing the true stories and certainly not caring for human life to the level that we should. They will let your children die, they will let our elderly suffer and waste horribly away, as long as they can serve their own selfish, self-indulgent, self-glorifying and self-absorbed needs of having a Kodak moment with a rescued dog, rabbit or even rat. They have no qualms about destroying years of scientific research that will eventually cure cancer, overcome disease, and stop the next plague, as long as they can hear their own shouts ringing on television screens and the clang of money swirling in their cash tins as they collect from you, the public, for their next campaign of terror and protest. We should know them all too well, because the likes of them have been around for a long time. One of their greatest proponents was a man named Adolf Hitler. Most people don’t recognize that Hitler was a leading animal activist and made it part of his platform in his rise to power. We all know now how little he cared for the sanctity of human life, yet he was quoted saying that he loved his Alsatian far beyond any human. In 1943 when he successfully passed the Bavarian Protocols, he made it illegal to use animals in medical research. Instead, he would provide an unlimited supply of inferior humans for that purpose. We all know how that story ended. Ten million, Catholics, Jews, Slavs, disabled, and homosexuals sent to their deaths, many of them ending up as the victims of his Bavarian Protocols for medical research.
Surprisingly, this same media, of which I am ashamed to say is Canadian owned, Global Can-West, or TV3 here in New Zealand has not hidden any of its anti-Israeli, anti-Zionist and by implication any of its anti-Semitic rhetoric. And now it presents itself as the protector in New Zealand of the same Bavarian Protocols but with a Kiwi flavour. How interesting that history will repeat itself and if allowed to continue it will once again see humans as the guinea pigs for medical research because once more we have denigrated the value of human life to the bottom of the pits. Even now, the activists are clamouring for prisoners to be used for medical research instead of animals. The use of people justified through their distorted and illogical sense of values proves they are in truth no different from the Nazis that proceeded them. And who will be those prisoners? Anyone in the future that disagrees with them or the government policies that are put in place because we have become silent against this lunatic fringe that is now occupying our downtowns in cities across the world because they demand that the world listens to them and provides them with a living while the majority of us remain hard working and socially responsible. Meanwhile the TV Screens parade these people around as paragons of virtue and heroes of a modern society. I hardly think so. They are the disgruntled, the displaced and the anarchists of all that our parents, and their parents and those before them have built so that we can have a generation without war and hopefully without suffering. So when people like John Campbell, a man with very little experience in the real world as he sits in his $1000 suits and his manicured nails and his puffta coiffed hairstyle sits at a news desk and pretends that he knows what he is talking about as he reads papers stolen from my facility, or that he even knows me, then I can only shake my head with remorse that people will choose to believe this charlotan because he represents all that they aspire for, entranced by the glitz of media at its lowest ebb. As I have come to recognize, even he is nothing more than a trained monkey, dancing to the whims of his producer, a man named Pip Keane, who has demonstrated repeatedly to me his little concern for the truth or honesty in journalism. But do no be mistaken, this is not about a media moment, a sound bite, or a ratings event as most of us that watch in ignorance have come to expect. This is about a world gone mad where human life has been devalued to the point that we have become blinded and silent to the events. If we remain silent, then we will be responsible for everything that happens. The Movie Contagion attempted to downplay the reality and soften its impact when it showed only a handful of monkeys being used to develop the vaccine that will save mankind. Truth is that hundreds of monkeys will be used around the world in order to find that one vaccine that works. You can let the media and these acitivists stop that now, and we can all suffer the consequences of the next outbreak, OR we can stop them now and say enough is enough, we want to survive and we recognize in order to do so animal sacrifices will be made but we also understand and know that the research will be regulated to see that it is done humanely. That is all we can ask. That is the voice and desire of the silent majority.
For those of you that believe in God, then you know and understand that he recognizes the role that animal sacrifice has played in the preservation of human life. It is He that has granted us the knowledge and understanding of the human and animal genome so that we can develop effective treatments and cures for the diseases that afflict both humans and animals. It is He that has placed at our disposal the science and technology that will ultimately aid us in winning this war against suffering and disease and because that technology requires the sacrifice of other species, He has given us His approval to do so, in order that we can remain morally unafflicted as long as we continue to respect the life of those animals making the sacrifice and do so humanely.
For those of you who do not believe in God, then I can only say that as a species we must always look towards self preservation and scientific advancement that will permit us to do so. Humanity must come before all else if this world is going to survive. Your children must become before all else if you truly understand love and devotion. Your parents, relatives, friends must become before all else if you truly appreciate the brotherhood of mankind and the knowledge that life is sacred and it is our duty to preserve it whenever possible. Where the loss of animal is involved, then I can only say that as much as we may love them, we can justify their sacrifice by the resultant saving and preservation of the millions that benefit. And every medical development that has served mankind has also gone on to help preserve animal lives through the veterinary field. Life comes with a price tag. Most of you will avoid or not even face the making of such decisions. The few of us that do so are dedicated to preserving the sanctity of life, even if it means sacrifices have to be made along the way to do so. We at least have the courage and the honesty to make the hard and diffiuclt decisions even if the majority of you don’t want to face it. All I ask is that if you truly believe in the preservation of mankind and the value of human life, then you pass this article on to as many people as possible so that we can turn the dark tide that is preparing to sweep us away. All I ask is that you base your opinion on all the facts and not just the selective and propagandist information that is provided to you by the media. They are only serving their own needs which happens to revolve around dollar bills. They care little for you or your family. The time is now that we take a stand against those that place so little value on a human life.
Dr. Allen Goldenthal
Avrom Aryeh Zuk Kahana