BOOK REVIEW: Empty Cages: Facing the Challenge of Animal Rights

Empty Cages: Facing the Challenge of Animal Rights

One of the best introductions to animal rights out there, Empty Cages is an excellent primer for supporters and skeptics alike.

Long-time activist Regan discusses issues of animal abuse and exploitation in a steady, rational tone that communicates respect for the readers. Unlike almost every other book of this genre, Regan realizes that mental blocks stand in the way between mainstream society and the recognition of humane values. For over two decades the animal use industries have been on the defensive, attempting to paint anyone who questions their business practices as a threat to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. And of course, some activists have made their own bed by engaging in poorly-planned and offensive sloganeering and demonstrations. Regan is one of the few humane writers who recognize the need to swish away these cobwebs before we can sit down for a meaningful discussion of the true issues. He presents humane advocates truthfully for what the vast majority of us are—average folks with homes, careers, families—and a deep concern about the ways in which animals are treated in our world.

As expected, Regan discusses the many venues of animal exploitation in modern society, and answers common excuses offered by those who engage in these practices. This is par for the course. Even better is the final chapter, “Yes, But…” in which Regan acknowledges, and respectfully addresses, the many hang-ups which prevent most people from doing anything to make meaningful changes in their lives.

This would be an excellent book to share in a philosophy class. I recommend it to anyone curious about the modern humane movement—whether or not they consider themselves part of it.



2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. larry
    Oct 26, 2011 @ 04:24:44

    Here is a good video on animal rights:


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