February 3, 2023 | J.Y. Jones

On the Origin of Speciesism, Part 2




by J. Y. Jones, M.D.

In my earlier article, we looked in general at the proposition of eliminating the species concept in favor of a more “advanced” approach. This change would remove mankind from the top of the species pyramid and equalize all life while eliminating the concept of human exceptionalism. This radical step, which the animal rights movement has pushed in some form for decades, would effectively end civilization as we know it, in favor of equalization of all current life (giving mankind no advantage over the amoeba, for example).

We discussed earlier the major limitations of this prospective policy actually being implemented. Among the consequences would naturally be the outright elimination, or very severe restriction, of most human activities, plus all future advances. Thankfully, we still have a representative government, which would hopefully pose an obstacle to this policy ever becoming law (however, maybe not; some of their recent “woke” legislative and executive actions would certainly be in line with such an illogical mandate). In this segment we will continue looking at the book in more detailed fashion.

The Book: Chapter by Chapter, continued


6: Symbols and How We Came to Be Human
by Mark W. Moffett

Chapter 6 of the subject book addresses the presence of “symbols” or “markers” that presumably exist in ants and bees, as well as humans. I was able to find very little on which to comment.


7: Law and Nature: Human, Non-human, and Ecosystem Rights
by Gary Steiner and Marc Lucht

On the other hand, Chapter 7 gives me a lot to talk about. While it recognizes the traditional view that only human beings have “rights,” it fails to mention the accompanying responsibility. This part of the book is replete with references to the need to apply human-like standards to lower living beings, and even non-living natural phenomena.[10]  No species or phenomenon deserves rights if they are not able to take on a corresponding responsibility.

The problem here is attributing “rights” to various life forms, and even non-living natural forces or panoramas (in fact all that exists except Homo sapiens) which are incapable of reciprocating or even in the position of appreciating the concept. It takes a mind such as is only possessed by the Creator, and on beings such as humans on which the Omnipotent One has placed his stamp, or image.  Even higher animals such as apes, horses, dogs, dolphins, and other intelligent mammals are totally unreasoning and thus have no concept beyond the present. To reason and to plan is future-oriented, an essential characteristic of stewardship, which these animals can’t comprehend. This is even more so with birds, reptiles, amphibians, fish, echinoderms, and such.

Still, they should nevertheless be ascribed all the care and compassion due them as fellow creations of the Almighty (actually of His eternal Son, Jesus Christ, the Creating Agent of the Trinity.[11]), Human beings are given unqualified dominion over the plant and animal kingdoms in the first chapters of Genesis, these being the only living divisions easily definable without modern microscopes and microbiological expertise. There “Man” is given the stamp of the image of the one true God, the Creator and Sustainer of the universe and all it contains. The atheistic position that an impossible and uncaring stroke of fate “created” all we can perceive is a dead-end street of the highest order. It leaves no hope beyond this life and thus not a shred of need to preserve what we’ve been allocated (like it or not) as our sphere of influence.

If the atheistic view were true, then there is no materialistic, spiritual, or other penalty for failure to do exercise care, concern, or compassion toward the universe. For those of us who expect to give account to Almighty God for our very brief tenure on His special “fine-tuned” planet, stewardship and dominion are not sterile concepts, they are the substance that determines, in great part, our place in eternity.

Ours is not dominion without responsibility, however; it is dominion where the benefits (or even the lack thereof) derived from various species (and I still prefer strongly the term, species, despite the arguments I’ve been reading) are held in stewardship so that we do minimum permanent harm to nature by our human activities. Human progress, however, sometimes involves a tradeoff that does harm segments of the environment through alternative human-caused land use conflicts. These should certainly be curtailed where possible, but not in the name of equality between Man and non-sentient beings, whether archaea, prokaryotes, or eukaryotes.

I find myself in hearty agreement with Richard Posner, where he is quoted as saying “…there is no need for (such) rethinking. (He) suggests that his sense of the absolute moral priority of human beings over non-human animals is based on ‘a moral intuition deeper than any reason,’ and he dismisses as ‘weird’ and ‘insane’ any theory according to which animals count anywhere near as much as human beings in the moral scheme of things.”[12] To this I say, “Amen.”

Read Dr Jones’ fast-moving and dramatic novel about a world in which animal rights activism runs amok.

The authors of this chapter, Drs. Steiner and Lucht, are obviously very academic and highly educated. They also appear to be full-scale animal rights activists of the Wayne Pacelle/Cleveland Amory type,* who routinely put cats, dogs, and other (primarily mammalian) animals equal to or even above man in their “tree of life.” Their conclusions, while pleasing to radicals of their ilk, are so far off the chart wrong that they deserve little attention or comment from the scientific community.

*Wayne Pacelle is a true radical chosen by Cleveland Amory (1917-1998) to be head of the radical “Fund for Animals”, which Amory started. The two had a big falling-out when Pacelle abruptly left Amory’s organization to become head of HSUS, or the Humane Society of the US.

8: A Phylogenetic Approach to Conservation: Biodiversity and Ecosystem Functioning for a Changing Globe
by Michael F. Allen and Brent D. Mishler

Chapter 8 is mostly about imposing extreme measures on the planet to achieve the goals outlined in the subject book. That this would not work, especially in developing countries, is mirrored in the way China and India continue without penalty to open a coal-fired electric power plant almost daily, in desperation to provide power to an impoverished people who can’t “afford” not to open, much less close down, such plants.

There are numerous reasons why I know my assessment is true, but a major one concerns my knowledge of the Kenya experience with wildlife conservation. Egged on by well-meaning but unrealistic animal rights groups, Kenya’s moderate loss of wildlife was greatly accelerated, as described in the quote below, even as it promised improved management and relief through eco-tourism. Measures that fail to include and welcome all stake-holders will never solve any ecological problems; they will exacerbate them.

People fund wildlife diversity and habitat protection through contributions in the form of taxes, laws, hunting and fishing licenses, park entry permits, safari concessions, and the like, not through force of law which condemns land or puts it off limits for any human use. This latter approach was used in Kenya when the country abolished sport hunting several decades ago, at the urging of many unthinking anti-conservation groups (they would deny this designation, but in retrospect it fits perfectly). The effects of removing conservation incentive and funding for enforcement, plus eliminating landowner and local population stakes, were disastrous:

In an abrupt policy reversal in 1977, all consumptive uses of wildlife and the associated trades in wildlife products were prohibited and all compensation schemes were abandoned as being ineffective and corrupted [my note: white safari operators are probably meant here]. Conservation policy now relied solely on command and control. However, with the gradual erosion of institutional capabilities and motivation to enforce property rights either inside or outside the PAs [Protected Areas], the following years were characterized by outrageous poaching especially of high value species such as elephant and rhinoceros. Furthermore, the removal of all incentives for landowners to invest in and conserve wildlife led to the pernicious eradication of wildlife throughout the rangelands of Kenya.[13]

Is there anything else to be said? Yes, prior to this declaration the primary protectors and guardians of animals outside the PAs were the safari operators, who patrolled diligently to protect their heavy investments in their concession areas. When these vastly important stakeholders were summarily removed, wildlife viewing ceased in most of Kenya as poaching and bush meat schemes decimated and destroyed what had previously been the pride of Africa, in terms of wildlife stewardship.


9: Energy and Society: Toward a Sustainable Future
by Saul Griffith

Chapter 9 is all about the future and politics of energy policy and decisions, plus notes on the disaster awaiting the world if we don’t change our energy use patterns, specifically as regards carbon dioxide (CO2) output. The outcome here is no more promising than in previous chapters. Since the dialog is mostly well known (though often in a distorted fashion), I won’t put you through a more complete review, but I will draw some conclusions and give you a reference for those interested in more information.

I have long disputed the need to limit, in any way, the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere. Like the spotted owl and the snail darter, this is a conveniently manufactured issue designed to disadvantage civilization in its quest to advance human progress. A book by S. Fred Singer caught my eye recently, in that it espouses my exact feelings about the contrived “climate crisis” that we are using to frighten our children, construct draconian laws, and outright do harm to our environment and to human progress in a most serious and avoidable way.[14] Below are a few salient points from that book that it documents extremely well:

  • CO2 has not caused temperatures or sea levels to rise beyond historical rates.
  • Severe storms have not increased in frequency or intensity since 1970—neither have heat waves nor droughts.
  • Global change is not harming coral reefs.
  • Any increases in CO2 concentrations across huge time spans (there have been a few) haven’t preceded rising global temperatures; they’ve followed them by about six to eight hundred years—just the opposite of alarmist claims.
  • Alarmist climate scientists have hidden their raw temperature data and have deleted pertinent emails—then undermined the peer-review system to squelch debate.

Some Personal Experiences with Stewardship

My profession has changed radically since I retired as a practicing ophthalmologist in 2014, and now I’m a full-time tree farmer. The statistics and allegations in the subject book just simply don’t square with in-the-field observations. In Georgia, we grow more trees than any other state, and not only because trees like it here, it’s the backbone of the State’s economy, and we plant them! My wife and I have had some property for most of our 60-year marriage, and we’ve gone through a couple of harvest cycles on much of it. We’ve planted some three million seedlings on our property since we settled here, and we continue to harvest and replant this amazing natural resource.

Pine seedlings have been through many generations of improvement by forestry professionals, and those of us around long enough to have had experience with earlier varieties (and planting techniques) stand amazed at the growth rate of these newer editions. Fire is one of our most precious management tools, turning the forest floor from a tinderbox that threatens all species that live there, to a rich amalgam of tree-nourishing soil. We burn among older live trees only in winter, when the trees are dormant. Our summer burns are to prepare a harvested site for replanting. At this time temperatures are high, so by burning we suppress noxious vegetation (ever heard of kudzu?) and prepare the soil for new seedlings the following winter.

Our latest loblolly pine seedlings, if they receive adequate rainfall, grow three or more feet per year, and require thinning at about age ten years. If we could somehow develop the resolve (and the political will) to increase the CO2 level from just under 0.04% to O.06%, the trees would grow almost twice as fast on the same soil, nutrient levels, sunshine, and water, and at virtually no risk to the environment.  Paucity of CO2 in the atmosphere is the main limiting factor on plant growth.


This book offers so much radicalism that other evolutionary biologists are likely to reject it because it impinges greatly on the main Darwinist position of upward progression of species all the way to the crowning achievement of evolution, man. Not to be overly critical, there is no question it involves “thinking outside the box,” way outside the box. “Species” as a concept is deeply ingrained in biological science, however, and I strongly doubt this work will have a significant impact. There are already critical comments coming from other scientists, and these may become voluminous enough to neutralize any harm the book’s “ideals” might produce. Let’s hope so.

With that, I’ll sign off with a favorite Scripture about the Ultimate environmentalist: “Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God, be honor and glory forever and ever. Amen.[15]


[1] Speciesism in Biology and Culture, Editors Brian Swartz and Brent D. Mishler, UC Berkeley, Springer International Publishing, 01/09/2023.

[2] Genesis 9:2-3, The Holy Bible

[3] Genesis 2:19-20, The Holy Bible

[4] Speciesism, p 82.

Dr Jones gives a Biblical perspective on animal rights

[5] Ibid, p 96.

[6] Ibid, p 97.

[7] https://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/dinosaur-shocker-115306469/

[8] Genesis 7: 21-22, NASB, The Holy Bible

[9] The Genesis Flood, Whitcomb and Morris, 28th printing, 1985, pp 67-69.

[10] Speciesism, Ch. 6-7.

[11] John 1:2-3; Colossians 1:16; Hebrews 1:1-2, The Holy Bible

[12] Speciesism, p 144.

[13] https://www.researchgate.net/publication/227532075_Wildlife_Losses_in_Kenya_An_Analysis_of_Conservation_Policy

[14] Singer, Legates, and Lupo: Hot Talk, Cold Science, 2021, ISBN 13:978-1-59813-341-7

[15] I Timothy 1:19, The Holy Bible

J.Y. Jones MD has been an eye physician and surgeon for five decades. He is a decorated Vietnam veteran, speaks Spanish, and has volunteered in 28 overseas eye-surgery mission trips. He has received numerous awards for writing and photography, and is a frequent speaker at sportsmen’s events, where he particularly enjoys sharing his Christian testi­mony. J.   Y. and his wife Linda have been married since 1964.

Dr. Jones is an avid hunter who has taken all North American big game species using the same Remington .30-06 rifle, resulting in the book One Man, One Rifle, One Land (Safari Press, 2001); Dr. Jones helped Safari Press produce the Ask the Guides series, their most successful North American hunting books. He has written 14 books and some 300 short articles for various periodicals. For more articles by Dr Jones, visit his Author Profile page.

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