All animals are created equal, right?

So why would only the animals called “men” be endowed with “certain inalienable rights”?

Doug Mataconis links a news item I heard about last night that has brought much laughter and derision:

A federal court is being asked to grant constitutional rights to five killer whales who perform at marine parks — an unprecedented and perhaps quixotic legal action that is nonetheless likely to stoke an ongoing, intense debate at America’s law schools over expansion of animal rights.

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals is accusing the SeaWorld parks of keeping five star-performer whales in conditions that violate the 13th Amendment ban on slavery. SeaWorld depicted the suit as baseless.

The chances of the suit succeeding are slim, according to legal experts not involved in the case; any judge who hews to the original intent of the authors of the amendment is unlikely to find that they wanted to protect animals. But PETA relishes engaging in the court of public opinion, as evidenced by its provocative anti-fur and pro-vegan campaigns.

The suit, which PETA says it will file Wednesday in U.S. District Court in San Diego, hinges on the fact that the 13th Amendment, while prohibiting slavery and involuntary servitude, does not specify that only humans can be victims.

Etc. We, the normal people who often think of ourselves as regular folks, like to laugh about these things. Last night I remarked in an email that,

the Thirteenth Amendment abolished slavery, which is defined as people being treated as property and forced to work. Animals are not people, so it doesn’t apply to them. However, animal rights activists call themselves “abolitionists” as they seek to abolish the idea of animals as property. (Hence the conservatorship ordinances [“guardianship“], which many foolish cities have been bullied by AR activists into passing.) The AR people are insane, and they need to be opposed at every turn. The problem is that many politicians are afraid of them, which is why they so often get their way. At some point, there will be a showdown, as this appeasement cannot go on forever. The animal rights people are thought of as nuts, but they are deadly serious.

Virtually every city that has a so-called “citizen’s humane commission” appoints these people to them. After all, they are the most outspoken, most organized, and most fanatic people who are involved with animal issues, so naturally, they get to organize, attend, and staff those tedious meetings which no normal person would ever be able to stand, and where they are surrounded with like-minded, single-issue activists who love to feel their power and hear themselves talk. The rest of us don’t take such people seriously. That is, until their duly-authorized goons show up at our doorsteps with guns and badges.

The AR microcosm touches on why people who want to be left alone are not left alone. It is related to why people who want to be left alone will not participate in activities dominated by people who don’t want to leave others alone. Politics is dominated by those who want to be in politics, and they usually go into politics because they like power, which means telling others what to do.

In politics, extroverts dominate introverts. Introverts might want to avoid extroverts, but extroverts don’t reciprocate. It’s an awful formula, and I don’t know who thought it up.

I mean, it’s almost as if the people who like to tell others what to do sat down and cooked up a system guaranteeing that only they would get to do it!