The Sad Tale of Nim Chimpsky. b 1973 d 2000

Nim was taken from his mother at ten days of age and reared in a human family as though he were a human child. He learned to use over 100 signs of American Sign Language, the communication system used by deaf Americans.

When he was eventually returned to a cage with other chimpanzees he would sign “out” to any human who passed by. (This after all was an animal who, when asked to sort photographs of chimps and humans put photos of himself amongst the humans).

I’ve spent a snowy winter afternoon curled up in the hot water cupboard thinking about Nim. Humans should think about him too. Especially the researchers who chimpnapped him, then when they tired of their experiment, tortured him by treating him like an uneducated ape and ignored his pleas for help.

Fortunately Professor Peter Singer and Paola Cavalieri have set up the Great Ape Project which lobbies for recognition of the emotional and intellectual abilities of the great apes along with the establishment of some basic legal rights.

For my part I think all animals (maybe even dogs but especially cats) should be given such consideration and not used against their will in experiments.

Instead humankind should use some of their own ferals.

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One thought on “The Sad Tale of Nim Chimpsky. b 1973 d 2000

  1. Instead humankind should use some of their own ferals.

    I can think of some to use. The ferals who rioted in London for one and the ferals who do those flash mob thefts for two. The third group would be those who voted for Obama.

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