© 2004, Humboldt State University


Justice is illustrated by how humans treat others. Human society can no longer be considered just if it continues to treat animals instrumentally, disregarding the moral worth of each individual creature. Emile Durkheim's division of labor theory offers a groundwork for providing animals limited rights within a human-dominated society. Solidarity can be fostered between animals and humans by internalizing the principle that all organisms are interdependent. This principle is the foundation for granting animals moral status. By recognizing the role animals play in our society, we can acknowledge our obligations to them. Utilizing a mechaorganic solidarity, humans can establish justification for moral treatment of animals.

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