Will Rick Hansen Stop Supporting Animal Experiments?|
posted on May 14, 2012
The Rick Hansen 25th Anniversary Relay has ended. Rick Hansen and Peter Hamilton have both spent 25 years on journeys to help people. But Hamilton also includes non-human animals in his dream. Hamilton joined the Hansen relay throughout BC on the internet highway. In order to raise public awareness of animal experiments he sent out hundreds of emails to cities and participants.
“All the facts aren’t getting out there because different views are up against a powerful research industry with their spin doctors. We have seen numerous unfounded, misleading media statements about breakthroughs that were actually the inevitable medical progress that occurs over decades,” stated Peter Hamilton, Lifeforce Founder.
Improving quality of life for SCI patients, wheelchair accessibility and education by Mr. Hansen and numerous other organizations is commendable. Prior to the Man in Motion Tour many were starting to get help. This included Rick who was using crutches after his injury. But people were not told about everything that Rick Hansen is supporting. People should have the right to know what he has supported and to see those horrible animal experiments!
In 1987, Lifeforce provided Mr. Hansen with scientific proof that intentionally paralysing rats, cats, dogs and monkeys will not help injured people. The use of “animal models” is not only inhumane but also is scientifically fallacious. However, Mr. Hansen supported this vivisection. No cures but vivisectors still want to continue. One of the “themes” in the Blusson Spinal Cord Centre/ICORD building at VGH is to create new ‘animal models” of spinal cord injuries. More lives and scarce health care funds will be wasted.
“My dream is that people will agree that animals should no longer needlessly suffer in vain for a SCI cure. No cure in the past 25 years. The progress to improve the quality of human lives and recovery has resulted from human clinical studies, non-animal methodologies and some by chance. It is inevitable that progress has been made in the past 25 years. Medical progress and modern technologies, such as robotics legs to walk, will continue to move forward,” added Hamilton.
“Many of us face severe obstacles along life’s journey. In 1968, I was hit by a drunk driver while in a car at the foot of Burnaby Mountain. My parents were told that I would not survive but on the third day the doctors thought that maybe I did have a chance. Impairments can also include being chronically depressed by the memories of the horrible animal mutilations that I have personally witnessed. I spent years of my life travelling across Canada and the US to document vivisection laboratories. We must stop the suffering of these animals.” stated Hamilton.
Over the past 25 years, Mr. Hansen has never responded to Lifeforce. Once again Lifeforce has asked him, “Will the Rick Hansen Institute join others and become a charity that does not support further failed experiments on sentient animals?”
Hamilton added, ”The Rick Hansen Institute could take the lead by asking their animal research friends and other organizations to take the lead to develop humane, scientifically valid research methodologies instead of trying to developed more “animal models”. When my 80s investigations of burn experiments on animals at VGH were brought to the attention of the BC Professional Firefighters Association they stated that their donations must not be spent on animal experiments. Hansen could also take a moral stand.”
“Rick Hansen even said that he would never trade his life now for the use of his legs. Yes, it is all about realizing abilities not disabilities in life. To count those blessings – whether rich or poor, in good or poor health - is the awareness that has naturally evolved over the past 25 years and will prevail over the next 25 years. Promises of complete cures that are uncertain are rather cruel. It must only be part of the goals.
I hope that everyone will ask Rick Hansen if they will become a charity that does not support further failed experiments on sentient animals – to respect all life! That will help also stop the waste of research monies and find those blessings.” stated Hamilton.
For further information:
Contact Peter Hamilton at email@example.com
Attached photo is of a Vancouver Province article “Salvos Fired At Research”, 1987
Please read the Facebook “Rick Hansen and Lifeforce 25th Anniversaries”. Read the history and why many doctors oppose vivisection.
What Doctors Say!
Over 900 people have signed a petition to ask the Rick Hansen Foundation to become a charity that does not support further failed experiments on sentient animals.
See The Petition
There are many organizations, such as the Physicians’ Committee for Responsible Medicine, that provide lists of humane, ethical research to donate to. Their Humane Seal of Approval is at
Humane Seal of Approval
Futile animal experiments:
Many modern methodologies have been developed over the years and “animal models” can be replaced by systems that can replicate and observe the human biological and anatomical functions. However, over the decades of failed animal experiments a billion dollar industry was created That includes the a variety of products from cages, feed, test equipment (such as restraint devices and shock boxes), animal pharmaceuticals, and so on. The companies and vivisectors controlled the direction of medical research.
The number of animals has increased at UBC/VGH. Hopefully fewer future researchers will defend it, companies will find other products and new companies will be created.
The Ironman” type robotic leg was developed by Israeli Dr. Amil Goffer in his garage following his accident.
During experiments at Blusson Spinal Cord Centre/ICORD intentionally spinal cord injured rats and mice were “fasted”. Some improvements were found in fasted rats but not in fasted mice. In addition to the differences between these species, the researchers also questioned if “fasting” is practical since patients would probably not agree to not eating. Yes good nutrition is needed for recovery!
Another researcher review animal experiments conducted in 2009 and found that all the studies of inflicted lower back injury had no clinical relevance.
A Spinal Cord Registry continues the importance of human clinical studies but continuing the proven failed “animal models” is not only cruel but jeopardizes any hope for cures. The two experimenters, Marcel Dvorak and Brian Kwon, introduced by Hansen also participate in studies using rats and pigs. These “models” have been used for over 50 years.
These researchers do admit, “Spinal cord contusion and transection models are widely used .... Clinically, however, other biomechanical injury mechanisms ... frequently occur, but these injuries are difficult to produce in animals.” And while trying to develop a newer pig model they agree that, “... the successful translation of effective treatments from laboratory models to human patients is lacking. This may be partially attributed to differences in anatomy, physiology, and scale between humans and rodent models. “
Further to the current experiments on pigs, video of pigs in spinal cord experiments was taken by Peter Hamilton in the 80s. The footage was later used in David Suzuki's A Planet for the Taking. Dr. Suzuki described the experiments as mutilations and shocking.
See Broken Promise Video
Broken Promises Video
See Broken Promises Brochure