Animal Rights Extremists Threaten NIH Director

Thanks to modern advances in the medical field, there are no longer huge hospital bays full of patients in iron lungs from polio. We have such common drugs as antibiotics, insulin, and others. Children no longer risk dying from juvenile diabetes. All of these modern tools came as a result of medical research. The animal rights front wants to destroy all of that and send us back to the stone age. As part of their sophisticated campaigns to end the medical research field, they attack researchers in their homes. In one such recent incident, they attacked a world-class scientist who studies medical conditions that affect children.

The People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), a statement in irony considering how many dogs and cats they kill at their Norfolk headquarters, has targeted the National Institute of Child Health and Development (NICHD) , making wild irrational claims that researchers have been deliberately abusing baby monkeys for 30 years unchecked. For two months in 2014, these extremists ran media ads targeting the public claiming researchers were using taxpayer money to scare baby monkeys and rip them away from their mothers. They created such a stink with their pie-in-the-sky claims that so-called “prominent experts” objected, that four members of Congress asked for an investigation into worldwide expert Dr. Stephen Suomi’s laboratory. A humiliatingly small number considering the size of Congress. Not all members of Congress were so clueless about PETA’s intentions. The American Psychological Association responded back to Representative Titus, one of the four who complained, to defend Dr. Suomi by saying no non-animal model exists to test pediatric drugs for safety before giving them to children.

“Over the past three decades, Dr. Suomi and his collaborators have made significant contributions to the understanding of human and nonhuman animal health and behavior. Dr. Suomi’s work has been critical in understanding how the interactions between genes and the physical and social environments affect individual development, which in turn has enhanced our understanding and treatments for mental illnesses such as depression, addiction, and autism.” American Psychological Association

After an investigation into the concerns raised, National Institute of Health (NIH) Director Francis Collins sent a response back to Congress saying the review of the lab found “no major problems with the research.” He went on to say that Dr. Suomi’s program has “achieved world class, enduring contributions to our understanding of the developmental, genetic, and environmental origins of risk and vulnerability in early life.” When the investigation revealed that no animal abuse was taking place, these extremists were undaunted in their campaign to destroy Dr. Suomi’s reputation.

Escalating their campaign of defamation PETA sent a letter to hundreds of people’s homes in Washington, DC area to slander the reputation of the Director Collins and Dr. Suomi claiming that Suomi is torturing monkeys with his “cruel psychological experiments” and equated his medical research with child abuse. The neighbors of these innocent medical workers won’t know that an investigation already cleared Dr. Suomi. The letter encourages average Americans to engage in a lynch mob of one of their neighbors because animal terrorists object to their line of work.

Science has learned that the letters, sent by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), targeted U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH) Director Francis Collins and NIH researcher Stephen Suomi, revealing their home addresses and phone numbers and urging their neighbors to call and visit them. ~ Science magazine, November 2015.

In the past, animal rights extremists have firebombed medical researchers homes and threatened to kill their children. UCLA neuroscientist David Jentsch woke up to a bomb that torched his car parked in front of his home, one in a long series of attacks on researchers at UCLA. Animal rights extremists called the Jentsch bombing a social sanction against him for his unacceptable behavior.

Now that PETA has publicly published the home addresses of Collins and Suomi, how long will it take for the first vigilantes to target them while they sleep? To target their families? When the medical community responded to the letter in outrage, PETA operative Alka Chandna retorted, “We’re providing a public service.”

“Those are the same excuses animal rights activists used when they posted my information on the Web,” Jentsch says. “If you want to have a debate about animal research, it should be done in the public zone,” he says. “Instead, they’re taking it to people’s homes. That’s out of bounds.” David Jentsch.

Shortly after this direct mail terror campaign came to light, the NIH announced the end of the research program. By publishing the home addresses of the medical researchers to pressure them to halt this research, animal rights terrorists have won.

America’s children have lost. Some of these chimps were used to test pediatric drugs for safety before using them in human children. Research that cannot be replicated on computers since the data programmed into computers comes from animals. Do you want YOUR child or YOUR grandchild to use a drug that wasn’t tested extensively on animals first? Or worse, not even have access to new drugs when they are critically ill because they can’t be safely tested?

Katharine Dokken is a Public Affairs Specialist at The Cavalry Group and the author of a new book, The Art of Terror: Inside the Animal Rights Movement, available on Amazon.

Follow Katharine and The Cavalry Group on Twitter: @KatharineDokken @TheCavalryGroup

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