TED Conversations

Elena Montrasio

translator, Mare Verticale Edizioni


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Showing experiments on live animals to young kids, regardless of what kind of animal, can be considered part of an educational program?

Several comments on this talk, http://www.ted.com/talks/lang/en/the_cockroach_beatbox.html, were removed from the panel because the administration received a lot of complaints about their not being pertinent to the topic of this talk. The talk is part of the TED Educational, and the comments were basically stating that showing a vivisection experiment, live, to a group of kids, was not what they considered "educational". I would like to know what you think.


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    Apr 13 2012: I personally don't see anything wrong with using insects in experiments for educational purposes. I do look at insects as living creatures but slightly different than other members of the animal kingdom..If we didn't, wouldn't we be racked with gilt and break down crying as we drove to work and slaughtered innocent bugs on our windshield. Wouldn't I stay up sleepless nights because I have mosquito blood on my hands? Wouldn't we worry about how we are going to relocate the ants that decided to take up residence in our house without paying rent? No we don't do any of these things. Why because we look at insects in a different way.
    Not an uncaring way, but different. Not as we do nonliving things we shouldn't look after, just different. I look at an ant as part of a body or group something much larger than itself. Like a cell in our body.

    When I step on an ant or hit a bug with my car I don't think of it as I've committed murder, I reserve this thought on insects to larger scale effects on their population such as pesticides wiping out entire species...the larger body.
    When you see an ant in your house and you set out poison...you see another ant and look at it as if its the same ant and say " that poison is not working, we still have ants" you dont say..ahh I've killed a hundred of them that should deter them from coming back!"

    I watched the video and I can see why some people where upset. The beat box part had the kids cheering at the dismembered leg twitching. That may have struck up feelings of young psychopaths pulling the wings off flies... For the same reason we see a spider in our house and sometimes we squash it and sometimes we get a cup and take it outside and set it free. It depends on weather we are looking at the cockroach as a small part of something larger or an individual creature with "human" characteristics..and this may change in each of us depending on the day.

    On a side note the speaker informed me that the cockroach lived! I liked that..

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