How Should a Human Behave Toward the Members of Another Species? Essay

Pages: 5 (1536 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 1  ·  Level: College Freshman  ·  Topic: Animals

¶ … Human Behave Toward the Members of Another Species

The question "How should a human behave toward the members of other species" challenges the conduct and behaviours of human beings towards nature. The question appears four times in the essay, and the author is continually referring to the question and linking human beings and other animals. Through the question, the author seeks to understand why human beings kill innocent species. David framed the question both as attitudinal and in behavioural terms. By placing the question throughout the easy, David stresses on the need to conserve nature. However, his essay suggests that the concept of nature conservation depends on an individual's moral standing. While the question challenges the conduct of human beings as well as those of animals such as snake and mosquitoes towards each other, this question has facilitated development of the essay. The question moves the story from the start via its climax through the end where the author confirms that no matter how well human beings behave towards nature; nature does not trust them.

The question" How should a human behave toward the members of other species," helps the development of essay's plot. The question has prompted two conflicting concepts among them the behaviour of some animals towards human beings, and behaviours of human beings towards animals and nature as whole. The essay highlights the impacts of animals such as snakes, spiders, and mosquitoes to human beings. The author asserts that some animals are dangerous to human beings, and as a result, human beings behave ruthlessly towards these animals. He states that perhaps while the spider was eagerly waiting for the eggs to hatch, she would have been unforgiving to humans who would try to tamper with the eggs, "…. she would have been particularly edgy, particularly unforgiving, and my hand would have been in particular danger each time I reached for a fallen pencil" (Quammen 236) . In this regard, David justifies why human beings have the right to kill some animals.

On the other hand, David questions why humans should be cruel towards other species. He admires the efforts made by the mother spider to bring into life more of its offsprings. The mother spider has overcome many hardships to ensure that her off springs are safe, "In the meantime, she had gotten pregnant. She had laid her eggs into a silken egg sac the size of a Milk Dud and then protected that sac vigilantly, keeping it warm, fending off any threats, as black widow mothers do" (Quammen 236) . He seems to suggest that such efforts should be appreciated through preserving these species and their offsprings.

The question establishes the concept of morality. This is realized through the author's first contact with the black widows. As the author gets closer to the spider, he develops a sense of compassion with nature, "To me, they stand for something. They stand, in their small synecdochical way, for a large and important question. The question is: How should a human behave toward the members of other living species" (Quammen 236). The question highlights the conflict as to whether animals have privileges and the meaning of animal rights. Animal privileges point out some things are not right with respect to principle, and that there are certain behaviour towards animals that are morally wrong. David cites the beliefs and conducts of the Jain religion of India where people are required to ensure safety of the animals at all time even if it means contravening their rights as human beings. For instance, the Jain people would not light fire for cooking or heating because the heat might kill the insects. This implies that human beings must avoid doing things that may hurt animals no matter the cost of not doing the things. For instance, some people may find it wrong for people to stay in the darkness for fear of hurting a moth or some people fail to use mosquito's killers to avoid harming them while their own health is at risk.

However, David does not believe that it is right for humans to deprive themselves their own rights neither do not animals need to deprive themselves their own rights. He asserts that the fundamental procedures of human and animal life do not necessarily involve a just bit of merciless gobbling and squashing. The concept of suitable links between animals and human beings is intriguing, trickier and more vital in the end. This is because some actions of human beings are detrimental to the life and health of animals while some animals depend on human beings. For instance, mosquitoes survive through drawing blood from human beings consequently jeopardizing the lives of their host.

The question prompts powerful attitudes towards animals' rights and morality. David asserts that killing animals by humans is triggered by moral concepts and one's attitudes towards the animal. He suggests that before killing any animal, people should look directly into the eyes of the animal before making the decision to kill the animal. Through eye contact, a lot of moral questions surfaces in ones mind that makes one to kill or not to kill the animal. Some of the questions that cross ones' mind include the damage one will cause to the animal, its family and the environment. Nevertheless, there lacks a common morality that is applicable to all humans because ones' conducts are guided by the concept of what is wrong or right. What might seem wrong to an individual may appear to be right to another person. David contemplated on what is right or wrong before killing the black windows, and he, therefore, took some time before killing the black windows. While some people may kill the spider out of fear, others may kill it because it is the right thing to do, and in efforts of protecting themselves. David's conscious disturbed him because he felt bad that he had to kill the black windows despite their tiny eyes that could not allow for eye contact. He felt so bad that he kept the egg sack and the mother to remember their souls, and he confirms that his behavior towards the black windows created a prospect for some kind of moral development.

Through the question, David brings in different ideas from different people and backgrounds. David cites religious beliefs of the Jain religion besides ideas from different philosophers. However, David does not fully support the ideas of animal liberation movement's philosophers such as Peter Singer. He maintains that animal liberation is a concept that stresses that all animals notwithstanding their different species deserve liberty from oppression and exploitation. David holds high regard for all types of life. He seeks to understand how people should treat animals from other species through ideas from modern philosophers. He considers views from different people such as Gandhi who questions the properties used to make the insecticide used to kill malaria. However, David appreciates the sacrifice made by some species for the benefit of other species. Because butchers are cruel while slaughtering animals for the benefits of human beings or because some people feel disgusted when they see the sight of blood, this does not imply that people should go vegetarian. Hence, different people treat members of different species differently given that there is no universal morality applicable to all animals.

The question facilitates stream of perception to the reader. David offers his own thoughts by his own interior monologues in the entire essays. He has repeatedly asked how human beings should behave towards members of other species. His ideas suggest that every person should act differently towards members of different species. For him, he considers eye contact as the best strategy that directs one's behaviour towards animals, "when I make eye contact with one, I feel a deep… [END OF PREVIEW]

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