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PostWatch: An irregular correction to the Washington Post

Brought to you by Christopher Rake


Wednesday, June 05, 2002
11:13 PM

Brother Barry also blogs at length on a Style section story on an animal-rights activist who announces that "I don't see a difference between a chimpanzee and my 4 1/2-year-old son." It's a fascinating and occasionally infuriating story, including this horror:

Consider Lucy, a 6-year-old chimpanzee legally kept as a pet and test subject. Smart and personable, Lucy learned American Sign Language. She greeted her human teacher every morning with a big hug and two cups of tea she made herself at the stove. But acting "almost human" didn't protect Lucy as legal rights might have, says Wise. As often happens when aging chimps outlive their usefulness as study subjects or become hard to handle as pets, her owners sent Lucy to a chimp rehab center in Africa. Poachers shot and skinned her, and cut off her feet and hands as trophies.

There's probably some useful improvement in animal treatment that lies between this barbarity and the blindness of a father who sees no difference between his son and a chimpanzee.

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