By Phil Riske | Managing Editor
While others protest recent deaths involving police officers, I feel compelled to growl about a ruling made by a New York court that decided a chimpanzee is not entitled to the rights of a human. The judges voted 3-0 in denying “legal personhood” to Tommy, who lives alone in a cage in upstate Fulton County, NY.
Lawyer Steven Wise told the appeals court the chimp’s living conditions are akin to a person in unlawful solitary confinement. He argued animals with human qualities, such as chimps, deserve basic rights, including freedom from imprisonment, but he lost his plea.
With all due respect to the court, I hereby appeal your ruling, with the following proposed laws for our near-human friends:
- Young chimps shall be protected under child abuse and safety laws;
- When they reach 18, chimps shall be permitted to vote, drink alcohol and smoke marijuana.
- Chimp-human marriage shall be legal;
- Gay chimps shall be able to marry;
- The government shall not interfere in the relationship between female chimps and their veterinarians;
- Female and male chimps shall be paid equal wages according to their job descriptions;
- Facilities shall be made to accommodate disabled chimps;
- Mexican and other foreign chimps shall be granted U.S. citizenship and drivers licenses as long as they pay taxes;
- Chimps born in the U.S. shall be eligible to serve in Congress and as president of the United States.
People for Chimp Rights will stage a protest against the New York court ruling on Dec. 17 at the Phoenix Zoo.