by Marcia Mueller
Trade deals are a nightmare for animals. When it comes to animal welfare and cultural-specific cruelty, trade and import decisions, policies, and regulations are virtually the only means of exerting pressure to maintain humane treatment or prevent cruelty.
But according to Matthew Scully, “As more responsibility shifts to the WTO [World Trade Organization], we lose those standards and the sovereign freedom to assert them. Free trade under the WTO has become not just a principle but a kind of mania, not just a good but the highest good, leveling standards in both human rights and animal welfare to the lowest common denominator and reducing all moral problems to questions of economic advantage.” Dominion (St. Martin’s Press, October 2002), p. 184.
For example, when the U.S. used its own laws against purse-seine nets which drown thousands of dolphins along with target fish such as tuna. The U.S. labeled…
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