For the first time in US history, a judge has decreed that a pair of chimpanzees held at a university research facility are covered by the same laws that govern the detention of humans, effectively rendering the animals as legal “people” in the eyes of the law. New York Supreme Court Justice Barbara Jaffe said that the apes, held at Stony Brook University for research purposes, are covered by a writ of habeas corpus — a basic legal principle that lets people challenge the validity of their detention.
The bag of chemicals we call “ape” is in principle no different from the bag of chemicals we call “human.” Justice Douglas famously wanted to extend rights to rocks and streams. This is where materialist reasoning must lead.
Here’s an interesting question. Would that same liberal judge extend habeas corpus rights to an eight pound human baby about to be chopped into pieces by an abortionist for the crime of not yet being born?