Do you talk to you dog like it is a person? How about your bird? A new legal case for animal rights has been filed by the Nonhuman Rights Project (NhRP) on behalf of Hercules and Leo, two chimpanzees who are being used in locomotion research at Stony Brook University to explore how humans evolved to walk on two feet.
The NhRP is working on several cases to break down the legal wall that separates us from nonhuman animals. Using the writ of habeus corpus, which has historically been used to challenge imprisonment, they are attempting to get the courts recognize them as legal persons who are entitled to a basic legal right not to be imprisoned, as opposed to recognizing them as property, which is how the law now sees them.