Because of sports injuries!!
I heard recently that the U.S. National Football League’s Foundation continues to give multimillions for experiments on animals at leading universities. The NFL is motivated: American-style football players have suffered brain and bodily injuries playing the game – even though they wore helmets and padded clothing.
A group of severely brain injured players sued the NFL in a class action and won $765 million dollars! They need to figure out how to protect the players better and have turned to scientists to study sports injuries.
The experiments make no sense at all!
How does smashing a poor little mouse’s head with a hammer have anything to do with a human — wearing a helmet — getting injured in a football game? There are lots of studies that show these kinds of experiments relating animals to humans have little or no validity. Our brains and bodies are different.
And yet, laboratories in the U.S., the U.K. and elsewhere around the world continue to harm animals for so-called scientific purposes. It’s ridiculous! Experiments on animals have to stop!
Every day I hear of the cruelest treatment of animals in the name of Science.
I just cannot understand why some of the world’s best educated people – those scientists working at the world’s leading universities – can also be some of the world’s greatest idiots! How did they lose their basic humanity and compassion? Don’t they understand that nothing justifies deliberate cruelty to living things?
Recently, it was revealed that Imperial College London, ranked 8th in the world, maintains hidden laboratories where hellish animal experiments go on.
Everyone needs to be made aware so that things can change – from the students at universities where this is allowed who could march in and free the animals (as I did when very young) to the politicians who could affect the changes. The British Home Office Minister, Lynne Featherstone, claimed in 2011:
“The UK has one of the most rigorous systems in the world to
That may be so — but independent investigators have proven again and again that the cruelty continues behind closed doors.
It’s time to pull open those doors!
Stop the needless torture of helpless animals!
If it hadn’t been for a group of nuns, the Paul Penders company might not be here today. Paul Penders shares a wonderful story in his autobiography. Can you imagine being a man in a nunnery?
A little backstory first. Like many governments in Europe in the 1970’s and 1980’s, Paul’s home country of the Netherlands (Holland) instituted testing of cosmetics – on animals. When Paul brought in his shampoo formula for testing, he witnessed the horrific practice on a day that changed his life. He ran out of the laboratory determined to find a better way.
As it happened, he had two aunts who were nuns.
“Feeling rather down after the debacle at the animal testing labs, I received a call from my aunt soon after. A family member had spoken to her about my issues with the Dutch FDA and she called to offer support.
My Aunt Bertha or “Sister Bertha” as she was known within the order was a real character. She was an accomplished artist and sculptor in her own right and believed in standing up for the underdog. She spent plenty of time in Amsterdam befriending prostitutes as she felt that their spiritual needs shouldn’t be neglected because of their profession.
My aunt was a nun who lived with her sister (my other aunt and another nun!) in the convent in Baarle-Nassau; she had spoken to her colleagues about me and convinced the rest of the sisters that they needed to help the lab animals by testing my products on themselves!
I was so touched that my aunt had galvanized her convent to my cause and I hoped that my so-called ‘nun testing’ would be approved by the Dutch FDA.
For the next eight months I visited the Convent every week to participate in a solemn ritual. On my first visit to the Convent I was rather startled by the sight of the large group of nuns silently waiting for me. I thought that they looked like a bunch of penguins huddled in the corner.
I was probably the only man who had ever seen their hair and was allowed to touch and wash their hair. I am very pleased to say that in the eight months of testing, no casualties were recorded and the nuns were very happy with the results!”
Paul’s decision not to test his skincare on animals created a major controversy in Holland, the country of his birth. Despite this long-term, successful experiment, the products were never officially approved — largely due to pressure exerted by powerful enemies from within both the Dutch bureaucracy and large cosmetic companies. The Dutch FDA delivered Paul an ultimatum: test your products on animals or close down the factory. His morals left him with only one choice: the search was now on for a more enlightened host nation. To his great joy, Paul found that the American FDA was open to his idea of non-animal tested cosmetics — so the company moved to America.
Over time, animal testing of cosmetics became a mainstream issue, eventually influencing every major company. The Paul Penders company became world renowned for its courageous stance. Ironically, it was Holland that became the first country to comprehensively ban animal testing of cosmetics.
And it is thanks to Paul’s aunts and the nuns of Barle-Nassau that you can be certain that Paul Penders shampoos and organic herbal cosmetic formulas, featuring the special herbal concoction LevensEssentie created by his grandmother, are among the very best in the world.
Read the fascinating story of Paul’s life and career as an e-book, Pushing the Boundaries: The Paul Penders Story.
By Paul Penders with Teviot Fairservis.
The first in a series of articles about PETA, animal protection, and China
Paul Penders can proudly claim to be among the very first manufacturers in the world to stand up to a government and refuse to allow his products to be tested on animals. Maybe even the very first. Paul himself has been a leading champion in the cosmetics industry for animal rights and an end to the cruel practices of animal testing. For some 30 years,“No Animal Testing” has been a guiding principle of his company, one that has helped to build its international reputation for excellence.
In 1984, he began a battle with the authorities in the Netherlands that culminated with him moving his entire factory and his family out of the country of his birth. The government required tests of any personal care products at that time (fortunately Dutch laws have been changed). Naïve and innocent, as a young man he brought a sample of his shampoo to a lab for tests, actually thinking that the animals would be given a bath and if their fur was clean and shiny that would be that. Instead, he personally witnessed the force-feeding of products to rabbits – until he ran out to the bathroom to throw up his lunch. That day changed his life and every day since he has been deeply committed to the causes of animal protection.
Recently a letter was received from “People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals,” known as “PETA.” In it, a representative wrote that the Paul Penders company is to be stripped from the list of companies that maintain cruelty-free practices. Their reason? Paul Penders products are sold in the Peoples Republic of China (mainland China).
This is the first in a series of articles to come on this blog looking at the many issues raised by this action on the part of PETA.
The issues can be complex, certainly there are still animal tests and examples of animal cruelty going on in China and elsewhere throughout the world. Political, legal, and financial issues abound around the best ways to persuade a country’s government to enact laws protecting animals and ending animal tests. The cosmetics industry is challenged to provide safe formulas that may border on the medicinal or pharmaceutical. And importantly, the proper conduct of a not-for-profit, donor-supported animal rights organization comes into question.
Let me say here that I am personally outraged by this action by a representative of PETA’s “Laboratory Investigations” arm. It is clearly harmful to this small company and profoundly disrespectful to Paul who has been one of the most outspoken leaders of this cause for some 30 years – long before PETA took up the banner.
Further, I believe it insults Chinese culture and its governing officials. And it damages PETA’s reputation as it destroys the trust of its supporters in the cosmetics and personal care industries, and the general public. If PETA can take such actions based on unidentified “Chinese experts” advice – without proof and or valid investigation – then why should anyone believe them?
“Innocent until proven guilty” is a fundamental principle of American justice. If PETA has proof that Paul Penders products have ever been tested on animals – in China or anywhere in the world – let them bring it forth. The burden of proof is on PETA.
Meantime, let us reassure you – readers of this blog – that Paul Penders reputation and principles are firmly based on a policy of “No Animal Testing.”
And you should know that even after registering 30 products in the People’s Republic of China, Paul Penders International has never been asked by Chinese authorities to submit products for animal testing.
Stay tuned for more – and please feel free to write to us with your comments at firstname.lastname@example.org.
By Blogger Teviot Fairservis.
Walk a mile in the shoes of an animal being used for scientific testing. Now how do you feel?
I just watched a video by a UK organization that wants the public to understand the need for using animals for research. They begin with images of cute little mice burying shiny marbles, then go on to dramatic images of patients and caregivers dealing with the horrors of a serious disease. Then back to a comparison of digging behaviors between normal versus gene-altered mice. We see mice in plastic containers digging into deep bedding material and the announcer infers they are having fun. What we don’t see is any food, water, or way of escape provided for these caged animals. Don’t the researchers get it?
Jacqueline Traide does. She actually went through being restrained, force-fed, injected, and shaved. Irritants were dripped into her eyes; her mouth was stretched open with metal clamps. In a stunning 10-hour long “performance art” piece to protest animal testing, she endured the same treatments inflicted on animals in laboratories around the world. You can see her and her partner, Oliver Cronk, dressed in the typical white coat of a scientist (or doctor or dentist) in some horrific photos from the UK’s Daily Mail which asked, “Is this the most extreme window display ever? Brutal treatment of woman, 24, as she is subjected to ‘animal tests’ in front of horrified shoppers.”Read more..
One afternoon, sitting in my kitchen over coffee, Paul Penders told me about his first experiences as a young entrepreneur. Armed with samples of his grandmother’s shampoo which he hoped to market, he was excited to have been invited by the Dutch authorities to bring the shampoo into a lab for testing. He knew the shampoo contained nothing toxic to humans and fully expected to receive immediate approval. Ah, the naivete of youth. Paul then had the “wakeup call” of a lifetime.
He watched rabbits subjected to the dreaded “Draize Test” when irritants are dripped into their eyes. He saw the less-than-adequate cage conditions and witnessed the impassive reactions of the “scientists” to animals in obvious pain and distress. He became among the very first in the beauty industry to “Say No to Animal Testing,” so much so that he moved the entire company out of the Netherlands. Now, thankfully, the Dutch authorities have banned animal testing for cosmetics, as have the U.K., the U.S.A. and many other countries.
But still it goes on… Justified by the need for new medicines to address illnesses, scientists say they can only find real understanding of the complex biochemical relationships through experiments on living bodies. So they choose cats for neurological experiments, dogs for respiratory and muscle tests, monkeys of various species for tests of drugs to cure cancers, HIV/AIDs, and other uniquely human diseases. “Lower order” animals like the drosophilia fruit fly and the nematode worm become the subjects of genetic studies. Millions of rats, mice, guinea pigs, fish, reptiles and many other animals are born, live, and die in laboratories at schools and universities and R&D departments of pharmaceutical companies. And that doesn’t count the millions of invertebrates. The list of experiments requiring animals for test purposes goes on and on. How many of those animals are treated with kindness and care?
(I urge you to read the Wikipedia article:
Governments do debate the issues and pass legislation like the British “Cruelty to Animals Act” of 1876 promoted by Charles Darwin, who wrote:
- “You ask about my opinion on vivisection. I quite agree that it is justifiable for real investigations on physiology; but not for mere damnable and detestable curiosity. It is a subject which makes me sick with horror, so I will not say another word about it, else I shall not sleep to-night.”
This is not to say all scientific testing is wrong, rather that cruelty in all its forms and lack of compassion for our fellow creatures on the planet is wrong. There are good zoos, for example, which provide proper habitats and a stimulating life to the animals in their care while educating humans. And on the other hand, there are millions of birds who live in too small, too dirty, too unkind “golden cages..”
Now check on your own pets at home – do they have 24-hour access to water? Food at least once a day? A sheltered and safe place to sleep? Room to run, play and explore? A clean litter box?
And check on your human neighbors – are there homeless people in your neck of the woods? Maybe we can’t solve all the problems of the world, but we can imagine ourselves walking for a little while in their shoes – and do what we can to make their lives better… Here’s to Jacqueline Traide!
By Teviot Fairservis.
From the great people of “Personal Care – Truth or Scare” in California I received message that “The Coalition for Consumer Information on Cosmetics” (CCIC) who runs “The Leaping Bunny Program” has the same concerns about the newly proposed “Safe Cosmetics Act of 2011” as they had before with the “Safe Cosmetics Act of 2010” that was rightfully rejected in Colorado and by U.S. Congress.
The new proposed Safe Cosmetics Act 2011 will overhaul the way cosmetic products are regulated in the United States. While the purpose of this legislation is good to ensure that cosmetic products are safe, it will have disastrous consequences for laboratory animals. Innocent creatures used to undergo cruel test for cosmetic products and their ingredients.
Although this newly proposed Act endorses the development of non-animal testing methods, there is little doubt that animal testing will be required by this bill! It will result in a substantial increase of animal tests!
Here is my vision on this bad news.
CCIC hopes that changing the cosmetic regulations can be done without animal tests. They believe that harmonize U.S. law with the European Union would be the best and I totally agree! In Europe they make safe cosmetics but also prohibit the use of animal tests for cosmetics! So in America we are going to re-invent the wheel. Why not totally disregard what scientists already know in Europe for many years? Or are the cosmetic products made by L’Oreal and Chanel regarded as unsafe in America?
Most of this incredible stuff right now just starts here.
To me, for the last 10 years, few things seem to go little but awkward in my own country. Maybe Americans have become little bit isolated compared to modern developments in the rest of the world? For example, here in the US we have the Environmental Working Group (EWG) that consists of no cosmetic chemists and they seem to act totally confused.
What disturbs me most is that our company in the past helping to establish a law in The Netherlands to prohibit animal tests for cosmetics already 25 years ago! The Netherlands was actually the first country in the world to make it ILLEGAL to do animal tests for cosmetics and its ingredients…. and now after all this time, the US wants to start doing it all over again?!
How many of us Americans feel lost in a society run by legislators and lobbyiests?
Also lawyers who make money in any way they can? Does neglecting all they learned in Europe bring us to more safe cosmetics and closer to nature? The EWG makes it sound like using a simple herb used for centuries with great results, now suddenly can cause death, or risk getting terrible diseases like cancer and more?
Consumers are made scared by scare-tactics of EWG
New “arm-chair scientists” coming along making things bad that later need to be fix that didn’t need to be fixed in the first place. Here is the business part that comes in. Because for centuries people in Europe use simple herbs for improvement of their health and cosmetic purposes. Now EWG and their “scientists” claim we are at risk from these same herbs. Of course, these scientists do not understand the miracles of how nature works… therefore it is suddenly no good anymore. How arrogant can we be?
But maybe there is more to it?
Maybe it is just pure business. Because who pays for all this nonsense? With all we do we are missing the boat. I think we are little bit lost as a Nation.
Most people in the world believe animal tests for cosmetics is terrible.
Useless and some find it even a crime. In Europe they stopped doing it a decade ago. In name of innocent animals, please stop the stupidity; the ignorance! Please let’s start to educate ourselves. When one buy a cosmetic product look for the track record of a company. Also be aware that “the new kid on the block” is not always the best but some tell great stories.
Please be not confused like many of us. Do not support EWG. They are simply not qualified to make their strange assumptions.