Good news, everyone! The US Fish and Wildlife Service has decided that captive chimpanzees deserve the same protection as wild chimpanzees. We’ve been living for years with a peculiar split decision that says it is illegal to experiment on some chimps, the ones still living in the wild, but other chimps, those that live in research colonies, have fewer protections.
This is a good thing. I’m all for research on chimpanzees — I want to see more studies done on our closest relatives — but it has to be done in a way that respects their right to live, just as we do a great deal of research on human beings, while still defending their autonomy and right to be unharmed.