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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
okay, since the topic of education was brought up, why not. i'm very frustrated... especially today. just came from writing a 30-page molecular biology final and i'm not in a very good mood. here's my issue:<br><br><br><br>
i've always wanted to do something bio/zoo related, for as long as i can remember. so in high school, i did all the dissections. the fetal pig, and then the cat. the fetal pig was bad enough, but i got away with just taking off because i had a great understanding teacher, and anyway at that point no matter how much i screwed up, i'd still get an A. so grade 13 came, and in grade 12 i started talking to the principal, vice-principal, teachers, everyone, to no avail - i wouldn't pass the course if i didn't dissect. i attended workshops, seminars, was part of a student association who went around discussing all that stuff. nothing came out of it. so i dissected the cat, because in the end they were donated from the humane society and they would have been dead anyway, etc........... <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/sad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":("><br><br><br><br>
and then university came, and there i was in the life science program, thinking now i'll learn everyhting i want to learn and i won't have to dissect again, great. but i was so wrong.... there are things that are so much worse than dissecting.<br><br><br><br>
in my second year, i survived collecting bug pee, taking vaginal swabs off of rats, yanking off ovaries from fruit flies, cutting off ****roach legs and making then move, etc, with an occasional "why the hell am i doing this" popping up in my head.<br><br>
And then the blood lab came.<br><br>
i think it was one of the worst days in my life. the topic was the oxygen dissociation curve of haemoglobin, and we had to go around measuring the partial pressure of o2 in the blood they gave us (it was either cow's or sheep) in little containers (curvettes). there were about 50 curvettes for each group, about 10 groups in the class. afterwards you'd have to rinse out the curvettes in the sink, which was huge and happened to be clogged. soon the smell of blood started getting in the air, people's lab coats were soaked in blood because the curvettes were breaking, , blood splashed on the floor, on the equipment, everywhere. i started feeling dizzy, my hands were shaking so much.. and i was thinking why me, i've never even had meat in my life. my lab partner was more disturbed with the bug she decapitated trying to escape (in another lab) than this. at some point when i went to rinse off some curvettes, i dropped one on the floor, and there was blood on my pants, on my shoes, on the floor.. it was a total moment of panic. it felt like i had just killed someone. when i was cleaning up i felt like i was about to cry but couldn't. at the end of the lab the sink was full and bloody, like a bathtub from a murder scene or something.<br><br>
that same day i changed majors. i decided there's no way i'm ever going to take a lab course again. i didn't want to learn to be a butcher.<br><br><br><br>
now i'm in psychology, but i still had to finish the course. what i wonder is if this is really what it's about, if all that's necessary. i'm not going to deny i learned a lot in those labs.<br><br>
so what i think is that zoology isn't really about life at all. they have such a disrespect for life, it's incredible. it seems to me like the interest is just like studying a machine that somebody else made, taking it apart and trying to figure out how it works. and i don't think my interest in animal life has anything to do with that, so now i just accepted the idea that i simply made the wrong choice.<br><br><br><br>
but now and again i think, does it really have to be this way? does it have to be so morbid, so careless towards life? is it because that's the way it's always been, and no one ever bothered to try and change things?<br><br><br><br>
has anyone else been through this? share your thoughts please.
 

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you are right, science is like studying a machine. That's science-facts and empirical knowledge.<br><br>
Dissecting a fetal pig in high school, and again in university, was the coolest thing, I thought at the time. Now, after maturing, becoming veg and also learning more about animals and how they are treated, I think I'd probably get quesy doing it.<br><br><br><br>
Perhaps you should study something like wildlife management. It's more about how to deal with real life rather than trying to decode life, if you know what I mean. I don't think you'd have to experiment inhumanely with animals in that kind of field.<br><br>
Or you could study conservation, environmental studies, etc. which would still let you learn about and work with animals.
 

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Talking about wildlife management and conservation, I've known people to try and pass off sport hunting as such. If you ever meet such a person, let me know. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/mad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":mad:">
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
yeesh..<br><br><br><br>
maybe i should change my major to literature, and then i'll be a sci-fi writer! mwhahahha....
 

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Alpaca Guy, Ducks Unlimited is such an organization. They work to preseve wetlands, which is good and they do a good job, but mostly they're preserving wetlands so more ducks stop by and then there are more targets for hunters.
 

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I had a similar experience, but I never ended up doing as many labs as you. I did do a good number of them though. I ended up abandoning one of my two majors (stuck with psych). But yes, maybe environmental sciences would be a good way to stay with bio, but in a better way.
 

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In my personal opinion, (nd I know I may very well be shunned by all of the veggieboarders) if you want to learn how to solve problems dealing with the body of an organism, you have to know how that body works. If nobody ever did any dissections, then we would not have people who know how it works. Now, if you want to solve other types of problems, that is fine, you can study in a different way for a different kind of science. However, how many people out there take their cat or dog to the vet? I assure you your vet has dissected an animal. I am looking into medicine and while it is a little disturbing to be looking at the inside of a body, I know that the animal is already dead and there is not really a better way to learn the material-looking at books, etc, while being an important bit of support, just does not have the same effect.
 

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Psychology, especially behavior psychology, involves animal husbandry and experimentation upon husbanded animals. Sometimes the experiments are cruel. Sometimes they involve vivesection. They ask questions like -- how does removing such and such part of monkey's brain interfere with its ability to distinguish, over time, between a blue door and a green door? How do you find out -- you remove the part of the brain in question, in a bunch of monkies, and device an experiment that measures how long the brain damage monkies can remember which door has the food, or whatever, behind it, as compared to a bunch of undamaged monkies.
 

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strawberry:<br><br><br><br>
> I know that the animal is already dead<br><br><br><br>
well yeah i'm not worrying when eating meat because i know that the animal is already dead....<br><br><br><br><br><br>
i disagree with your opinion.<br><br><br><br>
while i agree that it MAY be necessary to do SOME animal experiments, it is a fact that most animal experiments are totally unnecessary. e.g., i was quite upset yesterday when TV said that a new study confirmed that fasting is healthy and gluttony is unhealthy. i don't even want to know how many animals died (= were starved or stuffed to death) for the amazing insight that one should not overeat.<br><br><br><br>
most experiments actually prove simple things like that by torturing and killing animals. read peter singer's "animal liberation" for more info.<br><br><br><br><br><br>
i'm against medical students killing and dissecting animals for the sake of "learning", for the following reasons:<br><br><br><br>
first, we already know how the body works, we don't need to kill more animals for that.<br><br><br><br>
second, i know several doctors and they all unanimously confirm that medical students don't learn [email protected] in these dissection courses. it you want to be a doctor who operates, then you'll learn your trade (i.e. how the body looks like / works, where and how to cut, etc) by being a bystander for years and looking at how others do it. then slowly you are allowed to maybe close up the wound after the operation. then you are allowed to make the cut. and so on and so on. in this process you absolutely never use ANY of the knowledge you acquired by dissecting an animal on a long forgotten afternoon years ago.<br><br><br><br>
the dissection courses are completetely ridiculous, hypocritical and unnecessary.<br><br><br><br>
see also PCRM, a group of doctors fighting against dissection in courses medical school:<br><br><a href="http://pcrm.org/resch/anexp/index.html" target="_blank">http://pcrm.org/resch/anexp/index.html</a>
 

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oatmeal writes:<br><br><br><br>
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first, we already know how the body works, we don't need to kill more animals for that.<br><br><br><br>
second, i know several doctors and they all unanimously confirm that medical students don't learn [email protected] in these dissection courses. it you want to be a doctor who operates, then you'll learn your trade (i.e. how the body looks like / works, where and how to cut, etc) by being a bystander for years and looking at how others do it. then slowly you are allowed to maybe close up the wound after the operation. then you are allowed to make the cut. and so on and so on. in this process you absolutely never use ANY of the knowledge you acquired by dissecting an animal on a long forgotten afternoon years ago.<br><br>
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I completely disagree. I never would have had the background i needed to understand what is going on in various kinds of surgery, without first having dissected dead, and then living, animals. Reading and seeing models of animals or human animals does not give you any idea what is involved in making a cut or tear thru a particular tissue in a particular organ. dissecting dead and living animals does. Especially, dissecting mammals gives you an <b>exact</b> idea about what doing the procedure in humans entails. Many surgical procedures in mammals are exactly the same as in humans. Doctors should practice, and make their mistakes, in non-human mammals, before working on humans. Even things as basic as suture technique can be learned in mammals, and transferred to humans with no change whatsoever.
 

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Bah soilman, never say never...<br><br><br><br><br><br>
As I stated the opinion i wrote about was voiced to me by several doctors who operate on a daily basis. Their explanation sounds very plausible to me.<br><br><br><br>
Obviously there are more doctors who agree with this POV:<br><br><br><br><a href="http://pcrm.org/resch/meded/ethics_med_pointcounterpoint.html" target="_blank">http://pcrm.org/resch/meded/ethics_m...nterpoint.html</a><br><br><br><br>
"Point: Students must be exposed to complex living systems.<br><br><br><br>
"Counterpoint: This exposure can be to human patients undergoing necessary surgeries. Much more can be learned about human anatomy and pharmacological/physiological responses this way than via a terminal exercise with a dog, pig, or other animal. Computer programs can be useful adjuncts, simulating biological systems and their responses to varied stimuli.<br><br><br><br>
"Point: Plastic models cannot duplicate the hands-on' feel, the sounds, and the responses that a physician will encounter when facing his or her first patients."<br><br><br><br>
"Counterpoint: An animal laboratory will not duplicate this either. First, most animal labs are designed to demonstrate physiology or pharmacology and do not teach surgical technique. Second, the only way to produce all these phenomena is through observation of and ultimately supervised participation in human surgeries and clinical procedures. Students are poorly served by experimenting on dogs or other animals. Countless aspectsfrom the amount of incision pressure needed to break the skin to the size and placement of internal organson the dog are different from those of humans. Certainly, less care is taken to prevent scarring and collateral trauma on an animal than would be taken on a human patient.<br><br><br><br><br><br>
"Point: The more opportunities to practice a procedure before using it on a patient, the better.<br><br><br><br>
Counterpoint: Students are best prepared for procedures on humans by observing and taking a limited role in those procedures, under close supervision, and by manipulating life-like human anatomical simulators and trainers. Most animal laboratories don't teach procedures anyway, they simply demonstrate the known effects of pharmacological or physiological agents. Computer programs, CD-ROMS, simulators, and videotapes also allow for repeated use and practice, according to the students' needs."<br><br><br><br><br><br>
etc. etc.<br><br><br><br>
I truly don't believe that we need to torture and kill other animals for learning purposes. I didn't study medicine, but I think that I've seen enough in my studies and my field to know that students in ANY field aren't much prepared for what really awaits them in the job, no matter what they are taught in school. School is good for theory, it will NEVER teach you the practical things. That's why it's school.<br><br><br><br>
Lab courses are simply not the way people learn their jobs IMO and i don't think medicine is something special there. There is a lot of jobs where a newbie can screw up majorly, killing even more people than just one patient. In my experience, the learning process is always like the citation above says: first observing and then taking a limited role in real-life procedures, under close supervision.<br><br><br><br><br><br>
So I guess we disagree on this point...
 

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"Countless aspectsfrom the amount of incision pressure needed to break the skin to the size and placement of internal organson the dog are different from those of humans. Certainly, less care is taken to prevent scarring and collateral trauma on an animal than would be taken on a human patient."<br><br><br><br>
The pressure needed to break the skin of a pig and that of a human are identical. There is more of a difference from human to human and pig to pig, than between the avg pig and the avg human. The placement of the digestive organs in a pig is just about identical to that of a human. Again, there is more of a dif from human to human, than from avg pig to avg human. Humans are essentially pigs with different heads, arms, legs, and genitals.<br><br><br><br>
"Certainly, less care is taken to prevent scarring and collateral trauma on an animal than would be taken on a human patient."<br><br><br><br>
Huh? This is not so. If you want your healed suture line to appear on a human the same way it would appear on a pig, you place your sutures the same distance apart, and tighten them the same amount. Different humans will scar differently than other humans. The difference in scaring is, from human to human is again, greater than avg dif in scaring from the avg pig to the avg human.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
wow, discussions..<br><br><br><br>
well yes, psychology does involve cruel stuff, but i don't actually have to perform it every couple of weeks, i can just read it off a book. and it's really a very small part of all the kinds of different experiments they do. i quite prefer human experimentation. mwhahaha...<br><br><br><br>
and considering that i'm never going to operate on anyone, and that i'd actually have to read the "ideal results" in a book before writing the lab reports because the data always got messed up anyway, i'll agree with oatmeal. if, however, i wanted to go to med school and be a brain surgeon, then i'd most likely have a different opinion.<br><br><br><br>
good thing is that i can still complete zoology as a minor with *one* more course, and i found this great developmental biology course that has no labs!! yaaay! i'll see if i can take it over the summer.
 

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I ought to add that when I was college age, before I became veg, I was interested in animals, and in zoology, and animal nutrition, but after I became veg I became more interested in plant nutrition -- they "eat" just like animals eat. And I became interested in plant chemistry, which I began to find more interesting than animal chemistry. Animals are kind of like parasitic upon plants, dependent upon plants, therefore like all parasites, we have lost the ability and the internal knowhow to do all kinds of chemical actions that plants haven't forgotten how to do.<br><br><br><br>
Only human animals, having advanced consciousness and learning ability, and memory, can "relearn" via tedious experimentation, how to perform those chemical process we forgot -- but that plants do without nearly as much thought -- but we still don't perform them internally, in our tissues -- we are relegated to performing them in various external vessels. It is kinda of strange the way we are regaining the knowledge we lost.
 
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