How courtroom attorneys have to overcome bias, misinformation and ridicule when arguing for animal rights
Great apes, elephants and cetaceans (whales and dolphins) all demonstrate autonomy – a classic hallmark of personhood. Yet the effort to recognize nonhuman animals as legal persons in courts of law remains an uphill struggle to overcome the inherent biases in how we humans view other animals.
In its work to secure legal rights for other animals, the Nonhuman Rights Project has the unenviable task of not only delivering cogent arguments about the cognitive characteristics of elephants, great apes and cetaceans, but also overcoming inherent confirmation biases in our society about the abilities of these animals, including the “giggle factor” that prevents us from even taking the matter seriously.
In this live webinar, we will explore these issues from a scientific, philosophical and legal perspective, focusing on the ways many courtroom judges reflect our society’s biases against animals. We give examples of what judges have said that reveal this mindset. And we discuss ways we can overcome these challenges to attain legal rights for animal clients.