portland independent media center  
images audio video
newswire article portland metro

animal rights | genetic engineering

Animal Rights Groups Protest Use of Tobacco Funds for Animal Experimentation

On Saturday, about 40 animal rights activists gathered together at the entrance to the Oregon Regional Primate Research Center to protest Senate Bill 832, which would dedicate 200 million dollars to expand the research facilities at the Research Center.
BEAVERTON, OR - On Saturday, June 16th, a group of activists from an assortment of animal rights groups congregated on Northwest 185th Avenue in front of the Oregon Regional Primate Research Center to protest the allocation of tobacco funds for the expansion of its research facilities and staff. From 11:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., the group waved at passing drivers as they honked in support of the demonstration. This action had been organized to raise awareness about the concerns revolving around the bill, and to demand that the taxpayer funded Center hold a public forum to address concerns revolving around experiments conducted at the center. The Research Center has, to date, refused every request for a public hearing to discuss the medical "accomplishments" that the Primate Research Center attribute to its animal testing program.

Biotechnology Opportunities: the Oregon Opportunity Program
Senate Bill 832 would create the Oregon Opportunity program, and provide 200 million dollars of Tobacco Settlement money which would allow the Research Center to "capitalize on biotechnology opportunities" on behalf of Oregonians.

Opponents of the bill say that it would not improve the quality of health care for many Oregonians; nor would the tobacco funds that were awarded to the State of Oregon in 1998 be used for any kind of tobacco prevention programs. Instead, raising the amount of funds available for research would only raise the costs of general health services. Oregon voters had already refused a similar request in November 2000 to grant OHSU 10 million dollars in tobacco funds; Ballot Measure 89 had been defeated by 57 percent.

The goal of the Senate Bill 832 is to "seize upon the opportunity to provide all Oregonians access to leading edge therapies and procedures", as well as to "usher in a new era of breakthroughs in health care and biotechnology for Oregonians". However, the bill does not ever directly address the management or methods of health care for Oregonians. Instead, the bill focuses on the aim of the state legislature to "support OHSU in its efforts to continue to grow as a research power and an economic engine", and "to assist OHSU in securing the needed infrastructure to attain a critical mass of research talent". In other words, the money would provide an initial investment so that the Research Center can recruit more researchers to create the intellectual property that would then be sold to pharmaceutical companies and other clients in the biotechnology field.

The field of biotechnology has proven to be quite a lucrative business for the Research Center: monkeys are bred and sold from the center to other research facilities across the country; one rhesus macaque could be sold for over $ 3000. The studies conducted at the Research Center generate profitable scientific conclusions, or "intellectual property" that serves as the "raw material" for biotechnology companies. Hoffman LaRoche, whose sales of clinical drugs in the United States alone range in the billions of dollars, spends approximately one billion dollars on research every year; such pharmaceutical companies dedicate tremendous amounts of money every year to animal experimentation. Other companies, such as medical supply providers, also reap high profits from their business dealings with Research Facilities such as ORPRC. Whether it is the equipment used in the experiments, or the genetically altered lab mice that are provided as subjects for experiments, all stages of biotechnology prove to be extremely profitable.

Oregon Regional Primate Research Center
The Primate Research Center opened in 1962, and is funded annually by the National Institute for Health. The millions of tax dollars that are funneled from the NIH are redirected to non-human based experiments. The Center received nationwide attention in January of 2000 when they split an early stage embryo to produce a cloned monkey. In January 2001, the Center produced a primate named Andi ("Inserted DNA" spelled backwards) whose cells had been injected with a jellyfish gene. It is not yet known what practical medical applications or advancements were discovered by these experiments.

In August 2000, Matt Rossell, a former employee of the Center, held a press conference in which he accused the Center of not adhering to the requirements of the Animal Welfare Act. Shortly after the press conference, the Center hired Carol Shively, a professor of pathology and psychology at the Wake Forest University medical center to investigate Rossell's claims. She issued a report that confirmed the need to improve upon the care for the psychological well being of monkeys housed at the Research Center, as well as the inhumane nature of the electro-ejaculation methods used to collect sperm samples. The USDA recently criticized the Center for causing undue stress to its laboratory animals, as well as housing its 1200 monkeys in separate cages; experts say that such isolation is psychologically devastating to the mental well being of the monkeys and could lead to abnormal reactions such as self-mutilation and anti-social behavior.

Critics of the bill are hoping that provisions will be added to the bill to audit the center annually to ensure that the funds are protected from financial waste and scientific fraud. An amendment to the bill would achieve this by creating a public oversight committee that would ensure accountability at the center.

homepage: homepage: http://www.ohsukillsprimates.com


Appendix: Last Ditch for action 18.Jun.2001 12:02

animal rights

SAMPLE LETTER FOR SB 832

Dear Representative/Senator ______________________,

I am writing in opposition to Senate Bill 832 in which OHSU is requesting "an amount not less than 200 million dollars" from the tobacco settlement in order to "capitalize on biotechnology opportunities."

The people of Oregon have already spoken a resounding NO to OHSU's attempt to get their hands on tobacco settlement money. In November 2000's election, Ballot Measure 89 was defeated by 57 percent. The measure was OHSU's attempt to take seven percent, or 10 million dollars to initiate OHSU's Medical Research Partnership. If the voting public have already rejected giving OHSU 10 million dollars, why would they approve giving them 200 million? Giving OHSU this money despite the will of the people would be undemocratic and underhanded.

OHSU conducts studies that are egregiously cruel, scientifically redundant, and sometimes completely ludicrous. With the Oregon Health Plan in financial trouble and so many Oregonians living without healthcare, the legislature should be allocating funds for human health care, NOT for OHSU's meaningless animal studies and basic research, e.g., injecting pregnant monkeys with nicotine, measuring the urine output of a rhesus macaque, or maternal deprivation and other absurd behavioral studies.

Also disturbing is the recent exposure of OHSU's reprehensible animal care at their Primate Center. The March 21st issue of the newsweekly Willamette Week uncovered a report by Carol Shively, a primate researcher OHSU hired to review their programs. Her report the called for an end to the electro-ejaculation procedure and criticized the lack of social housing.

Recently, the USDA also chastised OHSU for housing more than 1,200 monkeys alone, for failing to give them fruit, for electro-ejaculating them, and for the stressful procedure used to round up monkeys from outdoor corrals.

OHSU needs to prove they are fiscally responsible with the monies currently allocated. Putting animal care and adequate staffing at the bottom of the list does NOT demonstrate an ability to set priorities that deserves to be rewarded with yet more money.

As a tax-paying citizen, I insist that OHSU be audited for financial waste and scientific fraud. The Oregon Primate Center refuses to discuss the validity of their science in a public debate and yet have been spending millions in tax dollars for nearly 40 years. Until they can prove to the public those monies are advancing human health, I am opposed to any expansion of their animal research.

I look forward to your response.
Sincerely,


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Monday, April 2nd, the State Senate Revenue Committee will hold the second hearing on Senate Bill 832, the "Oregon Opportunity Program"— Oregon Health Sciences University's request for "an amount not less than $200,000,000" from the tobacco settlement in order to "capitalize on biotechnology opportunities."

According to the text of the bill "Biotechnology is likely to be the next great economic engine in the United States, and the state should take positive action to ensure Oregon's participation in this emerging and important industry."

Economic growth cannot come at the expense of animals in research and human health!

The bill makes it clear that this a general money grab by OHSU to continue their research on cancer, heart disease, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson's and Alzheimer's disease. They also want to use the money to make "capital improvements" and expand their facilities.

NOWHERE in the bill do they even pretend to be using the money to help people stop smoking or even to continue their useless and redundant nicotine research on rhesus macaques.

We cannot allow ourselves to be deprived of the money WE won from big tobacco. Ballot measure 89—OHSU's attempt to grab seven percent or $10 million of this settlement— was rejected by Oregonians by 57 percent. Now they want $200 million!! We should be allowed to decide what should be done with OUR money. Please contact the members of the Oregon Senate and tell them what YOU think should and shouldn't be done with the money.

Oregon Health Sciences University has proven to be incapable of caring for the animals currently incarcerated there. They should not be allowed to expand!!! OHSU does a wonderful job of providing health care services for poor people, but their flagrant violations of the Animal Welfare Act indicate that they need to get out of the business of animal research.

For the full text of Senate Bill 832, go to www.leg.state.or.us/bills



Know your Oregon State Senators and Representatives!
Call your County Election Office to find out who they are.

The Senators' contact info is listed below.


County Election Offices

Baker County 541-523-8207
Benton County 541-766-6756
Clackamas County 503-655-8510
Clatsop County 503-325-8511
Columbia County 503-397-7214 Ext: 8444
Coos County 541-396-3121 Ext: 301
Crook County 541-447-6553
Curry County 541-247-7011 Ext: 223
Deschutes County 541-388-6546
Douglas County 541-440-4252
Gillam County 541-384-2311
Grant County 541-575-1675
Harney County 541-573-6641
Hood River County 541-386-1442
Jackson County 541-774-6148
Jefferson County 541-475-4451
Josephine County 541-475-5243
Klamath County 541-883-5134 800-377-6094
Lake County 541-947-6006
Lane County 541-682-4234
Lincoln County 541-265-4131 Ext: 2348
Linn County 541-967-3831 Ext: 2121
Malheur County 541-473-5151
Marion County 503-588-5041
Morrow County 541-676-9061
Multnomah County 503-988-3720
Polk County 503-623-9217
Sherman County 541-565-3606
Tillamook County 503-842-3402 Ext: 819
Umatilla County 541-278-6256
Union County 541-963-1006
Wallowa County 541-426-4543 Ext: 15
Wasco County 541-296-6159
Washington County 503-846-8670
Wheeler County 541-763-2026
Yamhill County 503-434-7518


STATE SENATORS

Brady Adams
OR State Senator, Senate District 25
S-203 State Capitol
900 Court Street NE
Salem, OR 973100629
OR Voice: (503) 986-1600
OR Fax: (503) 986-1004
Email:  brady.adams@state.or.us
URL:  http://www.leg.state.or.us/senpres/

Lee Beyer
OR State Senator, Senate District 21
S-306 State Capitol
900 Court Street NE
Salem, OR 973100629
OR Voice: (503) 986-1721
OR Fax: (503) 986-1080
Email:  beyer.l.sen@state.or.us
URL:  http://www.leg.state.or.us/beyerl/

Kate Brown
OR State Senator, Senate District 7
S-323 State Capitol
900 Court Street NE
Salem, OR 973100629
OR Voice: (503) 986-1700
OR Fax: (503) 986-1080
Email:  brown.sen@state.or.us
URL:  http://www.leg.state.or.us/brown/

Neil Bryant
OR State Senator, Senate District 27
S-206 State Capitol
900 Court Street NE
Salem, OR 973100629
OR Voice: (503) 986-1727
OR Fax: (503) 986-1958
Email:  nmbryant@empnet.com
URL:  http://www.leg.state.or.us/bryant/

Ginny Burdick
OR State Senator, Senate District 6
S-309 State Capitol
900 Court Street NE
Salem, OR 973100629
OR Voice: (503) 986-1706
OR Fax: (503) 986-1080
Email:  senburdick@aol.com
URL:  http://www.leg.state.or.us/burdick/

Susan Castillo
OR State Senator, Senate District 20
S-316 State Capitol
900 Court Street NE
Salem, OR 973100629
OR Voice: (503) 986-1720
OR Fax: (503) 986-1080
Email:  castillo.sen@state.or.us
URL:  http://www.leg.state.or.us/castillo/

Tony Corcoran
OR State Senator, Senate District 22
S-314 State Capitol
900 Court Street NE
Salem, OR 973100629
OR Voice: (503) 986-1722
OR Fax: (503) 986-1080
Email:  tonycorcoran@compuserve.com
URL:  http://www.leg.state.or.us/corcoran/

Peter Courtney
OR State Senator, Senate District 17
S-310 State Capitol
900 Court Street NE
Salem, OR 973100629
OR Voice: (503) 986-1717
OR Fax: (503) 986-1080
Email:  courtnp@wou.edu
URL:  http://www.leg.state.or.us/courtney/

Gene Derfler
OR State Senator, Senate District 16
S-223 State Capitol
900 Court Street NE
Salem, OR 973100629
OR Voice: (503) 986-1950
OR Fax: (503) 986-1958
Email:  senate.republican@state.or.us
URL:  http://www.leg.state.or.us/derfler/

Joan Dukes
OR State Senator, Senate District 1
S-318 State Capitol
900 Court Street NE
Salem, OR 973100629
OR Voice: (503) 986-1701
OR Fax: (503) 986-1080
Email:  dukes.sen@state.or.us
URL:  http://www.leg.state.or.us/dukes/

Verne Duncan
OR State Senator, Senate District 12
S-317 State Capitol
900 Court Street NE
Salem, OR 973100629
OR Voice: (503) 986-1712
OR Fax: (503) 986-1007
Email:  duncan.sen@state.or.us
URL:  http://www.leg.state.or.us/duncan/

Ted Ferrioli
OR State Senator, Senate District 28
S-216 State Capitol
900 Court Street NE
Salem, OR 973100629
OR Voice: (503) 986-1728
OR Fax: (503) 986-1987
Email:  ferrioli.sen@state.or.us
URL:  http://www.leg.state.or.us/ferrioli/

Bill Fisher
OR State Senator, Senate District 23
S-209 State Capitol
900 Court Street NE
Salem, OR 973100629
OR Voice: (503) 986-1723
OR Fax: (503) 986-1984
Email:  billfisher@mcsi.net
URL:  http://www.leg.state.or.us/fisher/

Gary George
OR State Senator, Senate District 2
S-215 State Capitol
900 Court Street NE
Salem, OR 973100629
OR Voice: (503) 986-1702
OR Fax: (503) 986-1167
Email:  george.sen@state.or.us
URL:  http://www.leg.state.or.us/george/

Avel Gordly
OR State Senator, Senate District 10
S-302 State Capitol
900 Court Street NE
Salem, OR 973100629
OR Voice: (503) 986-1710
OR Fax: (503) 986-1089
Email:  avgordly@orednet.org
URL:  http://www.leg.state.or.us/gordly/

Lenn Hannon
OR State Senator, Senate District 26
S-303 State Capitol
900 Court Street NE
Salem, OR 973100629
OR Voice: (503) 986-1726
OR Fax: (503) 986-1007
Email:  hannon.sen@state.or.us
URL:  http://www.leg.state.or.us/hannon/

Tom Hartung
OR State Senator, Senate District 3
S-212 State Capitol
900 Court Street NE
Salem, OR 973100629
OR Voice: (503) 986-1703
OR Fax: (503) 986-1958
Email:  tom.hartung@cwix.com
URL:  http://www.leg.state.or.us/hartung/

John Lim
OR State Senator, Senate District 11
S-205 State Capitol
900 Court Street NE
Salem, OR 973100629
OR Voice: (503) 986-1711
OR Fax: (503) 986-1176
Email:  senatorjohnlim@aol.com
URL:  http://www.leg.state.or.us/lim/

Rick Metsger
OR State Senator, Senate District 14
S-301 State Capitol
900 Court Street NE
Salem, OR 973100629
OR Voice: (503) 986-1714
OR Fax: (503) 986-1080
Email:  senmetsger@aol.com
URL:  http://www.leg.state.or.us/metsger/

Randy Miller
OR State Senator, Senate District 13
S-211 State Capitol
900 Court Street NE
Salem, OR 973100629
OR Voice: (503) 986-1713
OR Fax: (503) 986-1983
Email:  rm13@teleport.com
URL:  http://www.leg.state.or.us/miller/

David Nelson
OR State Senator, Senate District 29
S-217 State Capitol
900 Court Street NE
Salem, OR 973100629
OR Voice: (503) 986-1729
OR Fax: (503) 986-1929
Email:  sennelson@oregontrail.net
URL:  http://www.leg.state.or.us/nelson/

Eileen Qutub
OR State Senator, Senate District 4
S-210 State Capitol
900 Court Street NE
Salem, OR 973100629
OR Voice: (503) 986-1704
OR Fax: (503) 986-1987
Email:  qutub.sen@state.or.us
URL:  http://www.leg.state.or.us/qutub/

Marylin Shannon
OR State Senator, Senate District 15
S-218 State Capitol
900 Court Street NE
Salem, OR 973100629
OR Voice: (503) 986-1715
OR Fax: (503) 986-1011
Email:  shannon.sen@state.or.us
URL:  http://www.leg.state.or.us/shannon/

Frank Shields
OR State Senator, Senate District 9
S-305 State Capitol
900 Court Street NE
Salem, OR 973100629
OR Voice: (503) 986-1709
OR Fax: (503) 986-1080
Email:  shields.sen@state.or.us
URL:  http://www.leg.state.or.us/shields/

Charles Starr
OR State Senator, Senate District 5
S-312 State Capitol
900 Court Street NE
Salem, OR 973100629
OR Voice: (503) 986-1705
OR Fax: (503) 986-1007
Email:  cstarr@teleport.com
URL:  http://www.teleport.com/cstarr/

Veral Tarno
OR State Senator, Senate District 24
S-214 State Capitol
900 Court Street NE
Salem, OR 973100629
OR Voice: (503) 986-1724
OR Fax: (503) 986-1158
Email:  tarno.sen@state.or.us
URL:  http://www.leg.state.or.us/tarno/

Gene Timms
OR State Senator, Senate District 30
S-219 State Capitol
900 Court Street NE
Salem, OR 973100629
OR Voice: (503) 986-1730
OR Fax: (503) 986-1977
Email:  timms.sen@state.or.us
URL:  http://www.leg.state.or.us/timms/

Cliff Trow
OR State Senator, Senate District 18
S-319 State Capitol
900 Court Street NE
Salem, OR 973100629
OR Voice: (503) 986-1718
OR Fax: (503) 986-1080
Email:  trow.sen@state.or.us
URL:  http://www.leg.state.or.us/trow/

Thomas Wilde
OR State Senator, Senate District 8
S-311 State Capitol
900 Court Street NE
Salem, OR 973100629
OR Voice: (503) 986-1708
OR Fax: (503) 986-1080
Email:  twilde@concentric.net
URL:  http://www.leg.state.or.us/wilde/

Mae Yih
OR State Senator, Senate District 19
S-307 State Capitol
900 Court Street NE
Salem, OR 973100629
OR Voice: (503) 986-1187
OR Fax: (503) 986-1080
Email:  maeyih@proaxis.com


HITLER WAS FOR ANIMAL RIGHTS 19.Jun.2001 11:09

Susan

Did you know that HITLER was a vegetarian, was for animal rights (and against people, of course), was also aggainst reason, against technology and science, against man-made chemicals. He was for holistic health, "spiritualist" - anything that was against reason, against science, and technology. Are you guys the next Nazis? Read your SCIENCE. Read your HISTORY!

Reply to Susan 19.Jun.2001 13:43

0rganism

> Did you know that HITLER was a vegetarian, was for animal rights (and against people, of course) blah blah blah

Did you know that it's a logical fallacy to associate the morality (or any other property) of one member of a group to the entirety of that group? Whether Hitler, Stalin, Pol Pot, and Kissenger were or weren't vegetarians has absolutely no bearing *whatsoever* on their crimes against humanity. A veiled claim that anti-vivisectionists are budding Nazis holds about as much rhetorical water as claiming that all Catholics are Mother Teresa.

While I suspect most who read this site will be well aware of this important distinction between exceptional individuals and general groups, it's always quite disturbing for me to see someone make this kind of BS argument and pretend it means something. Susan, you nead to READ YOUR LOGIC; try

 http://www.intrepidsoftware.com/fallacy/toc.htm
especially  link to www.intrepidsoftware.com

On disqualifying concerned citizens 20.Jun.2001 10:51

anna anna_k17@yahoo.com

To Susan, and others:

Do not allow yourself to be distracted; the issue at hand is that the experiments conducted at the Primate Research Center have provided NOTHING that would apply directly or prove useful to improving the quality of human life and health.

--Spinning primates around in circles at high extremely speeds;
--Injecting pregnant macaques with regular doses of cocaine or nicotine to see the effects of such drugs on embryos (a big loser DUH);
--Installing "devices" (i.e., miniature cameras) "chronically" into the uteri of pregnant rhesus monkeys;
--Injecting embryonic cells with glowing jellyfish DNA;
--Splitting embryonic cells to manufacture clones or twins;
--Starving baby monkeys to mimic nutritional deficiency and study its effects (another big loser DUH);

has proven nothing thus far that has, in any way, shape, or form, improved or enhanced the state of health care in Oregon or the United States. This is consistent with the last forty years of history at the Primate Research Center.

Susan's comment does raise another issue, the attempts to disqualify the concerned citizens who have spoken out against the practice of animal experiments.

As the whistleblower who first brought forth accusations of mistreatment at the Primate Center, Matt Rossell (In Defense of Animals) has been attacked repeatedly ever since on a professional AND personal level.

A researcher at the Center wrote a letter that, while displayed on the ORPRC website as "a P.S. from a friend", the true agenda evolved in the form of an attack on Matt's character and motives:

"So, what's next, Matt? Do we have to be afraid that you and your friends in the animal rights world will go beyond the lies and betrayal? Intimidation, even fire bombings of scientist's cars, takes place in England. Is that what you have in mind for us, Matt? Will you be standing outside the Center screaming at the people who were your friends because they try to make a positive difference in the world?"

In April of this year, a press release announced acts of sabotage within the Research Center, with the suggestion that animal rights activists were responsible. The local and federal investigation into that incident have not been fruitful to date in explaining what happened, if anything did indeed happen in the way the Center suggested.

It is also interesting to note that just a few days before the press release was issued, an employee of the Research Center had anonymously submitted written testimony which would have supported the amendments to SB 832 that would have called for public accountability at the Center.

The Research Center also was still recovering from the unfavorable spotlight focussed upon it as the result of a report issued by Dr. Isis Johnson-Brown, a former USDA inspector, who wrote:

"The research institutions I visited, including the Oregon Primate Center, were not happy to see me coming once they realized that I was going to hold them to the law."

*read in full at
 http://www.vivisectioninfo.org/ohsu/ijstmnt.html

From comparisons with people like Hitler, to assertions that "the single biggest threat to human health today are animal rights activists", such character attacks only serve to distract the public away from the disturbing accusations that these experiments are not only cruel, they are also totally obsolete when it comes to practical applications in human health care.

If the Primate Center is not afraid to address these issues (or, "lies"), why have they refused repeatedly to have any kind of public forum in which all concerns could be laid to rest? Why is a public oversight committee such an unreasonable request for them?

As OHSU's website states, the "value" of a research program is not necessarily ascertained by the number of actual, practical contributions made to the fields of life sciences and human health; rather:

"A strong and thriving research program can be measured by a faculty's ability to acquire competitive grants from such federal agencies as the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health. At OHSU, grant dollars have nearly quadrupled in the past decade. Awards topped $168 million last year. That money supports more than 1,500 projects, which include both basic and applied science... "

--anna

shoot a politician today 21.Jun.2001 13:15

sniper sniper@sniper.com

This is too much..!!

I bet the tobacco company owns the research company.
it's amazing how the senate is so kind to think of one
place to put the money. I mean...forget new roads...new books...farmer aid - lets spend the money on bunk research.

Well folks...i think we have all seen this coming.

Its time to start shooting politicians. Now, you can interpret "shooting" however you want. I will have to say that i would use a camera...but i hope you creative folks can think of some other usefull shooting devices to use.

Money and power is all they care about, and that is what is driving this country into the toilet.

So i urge you all. (especially those with good sniper skills) to pick up your favorite shooter...and start shooting.

555-555-5555
555-555-5555

Another reply to Susan 27.Jun.2001 22:18

Elaine Close skisp@tao.ca

How about you read your history Susan. If one supports science instead of mythology she opposes basing human medicine on veternary medicine. What is science? Is it not about predictability, provability? Animal research has neither of these characteristics and has never been proven as a valid methodology, it is just convention. If you believe smoking does not cause cancer, thalidomide and DES are safe and high fat diets don't cause heart disease in people than it makes sense for you to support animal research. That useful data came from animal research. Unless you feel that educating yourself will somehow make you a Nazi, than please learn more about why animal research is not science or reason. I recomend www.curedisease.com for an explanation of why animal research is not science and how animal research has killed countless people because of its misleading data. Or read "Sacred Cows and Golden Geese" by Drs. Ray and Jean Greek. Find out how the great breakthroughs in medical history really occured. (They did not come from animal research. ) Or maybe unsubstantiated boasting by vested interests is your idea of history.