BRAD Wants You to Believe that Brutality Is Benevolence

The Rise for Animals Team, April 18, 2024

It’s the third Thursday in April, which – lamentably – means it’s Biomedical Research Awareness Day (BRAD) again. 

As we observed last year, BRAD is a creation and enduring part of the animal research industry – courtesy of Americans for Medical Profits Progress, a group of “top-notch propagandists” recruited and paid for by animal researchers to aggressively “defend” . . . you guessed it . . .  “animal research”.  

Far from shouting that torturing and killing animals is a-ok – because that would just not play well with the general public (even though it’s exactly what they support) – the industry’s (and BRAD’s) defenses are strategically and skillfully underhanded.

For example (and though it may seem counterintuitive at first), BRAD seeks to distance each of us from our own sense of compassion by paying lip service to compassion itself. 

The animal research industry does not want us to feel compassion for the other-than-human animals it uses “as tools . . . dismissing or ignoring their suffering, and violating their most basic interests as sentient beings”; and the industry works very hard to distance us from these types of feelings. One way it does this is by publicly “promoting the culture of care”.

Enter BRAD, which seeks to focus us on “research organizations’ commitment to providing excellent animal care” and “support for the compassionate care of [research] animals” – thereby, trying to convince us that animal researchers care about the wellbeing of the animals on whom they experiment.

Only it’s fake. (Literally.) 

BRAD relies on a type of speciesist propaganda termed “fake compassion

“Fake compassion” has been defined as “the display of an absence of empathetic imagination toward nonhuman animals, as well as a lack of understanding of their real needs, experiences, and struggles, while at the same time providing the facade of an ethics of care, of concern for the same animals’ needs, experiences, and struggles that the industry neglects”.  

Its goals are both to “influence the public’s belief and ideas regarding” the exploitation of animals and “to perpetuate speciesism (i.e., violence against nonhuman animals) under a facade of care (i.e., rhetoric of nonviolence).”

In other words, BRAD pretends to embrace compassion for other-than-human animals, while, actually, reinforcing a violent and oppressive ideology that defines “the torture and slaughter of animals as part of their ‘welfare’.”  

And, we cannot allow it.

We cannot allow animal researchers to continue adding this (intellectual and ethical) insult to the incalculable and unimaginable injuries they reap upon over 100,000,000 nonhuman victims each year in the U.S. alone.

We cannot allow them to condition any of us to believe that compassion – an emotional reaction tied to ethical and altruistic behavior – is in any single way compatible with subjugation, enslavement, torture, and killing; or that they display any meaningful compassion in relation to the very lives they – for their own financial and professional benefits – steal, exploit, and extinguish.

We cannot allow BRAD to believe we are in any way fooled by this concocted and offensive “facade to continue business as usual….”

Please join us in telling BRAD we know better – and in standing up for the animals whose suffering BRAD causes and simultaneously seeks to whitewash – by sharing this message.

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