Letter: Animal rights: reducing suffering should be our first concern

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The Independent Online
Geoffrey Wheatcroft (The Wrongs of Animal Rights, 8. 1. 95) falls into a common trap. It suits many people to dwell on the difficulty of arriving at a logic of animal rights because it masks their own discomfort. They dislike the cruelty involved in meatproduction today, but they eat meat. I solved this dilemma for myself eleven years ago by becoming vegetarian but I do not expect this to become the solution for enough people to make a real difference to animal welfare. Instead, I hope that people likeGeoffrey Wheatcroft will stop debating philosophies and start pressing for practical measures to reduce animal suffering to a minimum. Two such measures would be the ending of the (hypocritical) trade in veal calves - I know what happens to them even ifWilliam Waldegrave doesn't - and the banning of the export of live animals for slaughter.

Judith Humphries London