Democrats and Republicans Work Together to Stop Animal Experimentation Through White Coat Waste

Democrats and Republicans Work Together to Stop Animal Experimentation Through White Coat Waste

A nonprofit organization called White Coat Waste, a coalition of conservatives and liberals that aims to stop federal funding for research involving animals, has gained attention over the past few weeks for their animal-rights efforts.1 The group is led by former Republican strategist Anthony Bellotti, who says he wants to “unite the animal lovers and the liberty lovers.”1 White Coat Waste was founded in 2013 yet has only been active for the past year since the creation of their documentary, Socialized Science. The documentary gained attention and nationwide sympathy by depicting the brutal truth behind experimentation involving mice and monkeys.1

Last week, the organization gave a briefing at Capitol Hill led by Republican Ken Calvert and Democrat Dina Titus.1 The unlikely team is working together through White Coat Waste to bring transparency to government research and decrease unnecessary experiments.3 White Coat Waste has also recently released a report called Spending to Death that focuses specifically on research involving dogs.3 The document claims that more than 1,100 canines are faced with cruel and inefficient experiments through government labs.1 These unnecessary experiments include forcing dogs to have heart attacks, drilling holes in their skulls, and giving them anthrax.3

Bellotti hopes to end dog experimentation. His organization currently has a mailing list of 350,000 people, which he says he’ll use as leverage to pressure Congress into passing a law that requires federal facilities to disclose more information about their studies and to defund unnecessary laboratories.1 Though White Coat Waste is starting small by focusing on dogs in federally-run labs, Bellotti hopes to expand to other animal studies using taxpayer dollars.1

White Coat Waste wants to oversee the animal research spending done by The National Institutes of Health (NIH) and recently requested a list of federal facilities that are currently approved to perform animal experimentation.2 NIH responded by saying that they have no system in place to determine which federal facilities are receiving their tax dollars.2 Bellotti says that their answer confirms taxpayers fears and that NIH “doesn’t even have a clue which of its fellow federal agencies are getting a cut of the estimated $12 billion a year it spends on animal experiments.”2 NIH previously addressed it’s lack of knowledge about spending in a summer newsletter, stating that as much as 87.5% of biomedical funding may be “wasteful and inefficient.”2

Many taxpayers are unaware of what is being done to these animals and how much of their money is used for something they oppose. New polls demonstrate that the majority of Americans, regardless of their political orientation, want these experiments to stop and for the taxpayer data for animal research to be made public.3

However, it is unlikely that Bellotti’s proposal will be accepted without any objections by politicians or obstacles faced by Congress. The organization will also not focus on research done within the private sector due to the business interests of many conservative supporters.1 Many people, such as science writer David Grimm, are skeptical that liberals and conservatives will be able to maintain this alliance and that eventually ideology differences will create conflict and drive the organization apart.3

 

References

  1. Grimm, David. "Conservatives, Liberals Team up against Animal Research." Sciencemag.org. American Association for the Advancement of Science, 21 Nov. 2016. Web. http://www.sciencemag.org/news/2016/11/conservatives-liberals-team-against-animal-research

  2. Harrington, Elizabeth. "NIH Doesn’t Know Which Federal Facilities It’s Sending Taxpayer Dollars To." Freebeacon.com. The Washington Free Beacon, 22 Nov. 2016. Web. http://freebeacon.com/issues/nih-doesnt-know-federal-facilities-sending-taxpayer-dollars/

  3. Cook, Michael. "US Conservative Tries New Tactic against Animal Research: Calling It a Waste of Money." BioEdge.com. BioEdge, 26 Nov. 2016. Web. http://www.bioedge.org/bioethics/us-conservative-tries-new-tactic-against-animal-research-calling-it-a-waste/12105

 

Beneficence

Beneficence

Addicted America

Addicted America

0