An Austrian court just refused to declare him a person.
This is good news, but animal liberationists who seek his entry into the moral community of humans will keep at it in Austria and elsewhere until they find a court radical enough to presume to redefine personhood to include animals.
From AP: He’s now got a human name–Matthew Hiasl Pan–but he’s having trouble getting his day in court.
Animal rights activists campaigning to get Pan, a 26-year-old chimpanzee, legally declared a person vowed 27Sept to take their challenge to Austria’s Supreme Court after a lower court threw out their latest appeal.
Silly lead to the story: Hiasl only has a name because it was given to him by humans. We do that kind of thing, for ourselves and for animals. It is part of what we, unlike any other species, do.
AP: A provincial judge in the city of Wiener Neustadt dismissed the case earlier this week, ruling that the Vienna-based Association Against Animal Factories had no legal standing to argue on the chimp’s behalf. The association, which worries the shelter caring for the chimp might close, has been pressing to get Pan declared a “person” so a guardian can be appointed to look out for his interests and provide him with a home.
Is that the real reason?
No, they want him named a person so they can utterly upset the human/animal apple cart and destroy our belief in human exceptionalism.
[AP, posted by Wesley J. Smith, 27Sept07]