Steven Wise-a lawyer who's made it his mission to break down the legal wall that separates animals from humans.
His argument is that great apes, elephants and chimpanzees display enough cognitive abilities to understand traits like empathy, right from wrong and have the ability to remember and form memories. As humans we share 99% of the same DNA as chimpanzees, yet our worlds are vastly different.
"I want non-human animals to be known as persons, not people, but person. And they're going to be rights bearers."
That's not to say we need to be fearful of a Planet Of The Apes scenario, but we could (and more importantly should) start making greater concessions for our primate brothers and sisters.
If you need further convincing of Wise's argument, that animals are persons too, watch this brief documentary. He outlines the profound effect giving them freedoms, liberties and rights could have on the mental wellbeing, as well as how it could strengthen our unique bond with our closest relatives in the animal kingdom.
Via New York Times
``I want non-human animals to be known as persons, not people, but person. And they`re going to be rights bearers.``