Lethal Laws

Alix Fano, Author Zed Books $85.95 (256p) ISBN 978-1-85649-497-7
Activist Fano has strong opinions on both animal testing and environmental damage, describing herself as ""outraged"" that such ""heinous"" activities can take place in a supposedly modern society. Lethal Laws, however, concentrates on science, not emotion. By taking a rational approach, Fano hopes to ""convince skeptics to think critically,"" while helping activists become ""informed and empowered."" Emphasizing the often neglected connection between animal advocacy and environmental protection, Fano rightly points out that anyone who considers themselves a lover of the environment must respect the animal life that is part of it. She gives detailed accounts of the various toxicity tests laboratory animals undergo, then sets out to show that such tests could be performed more quickly, cheaply and effectively by using newly developed in vitro methods. As the abbreviations and footnotes pile up, the book takes on the tone of a research journal written for--and read by--specialists. Fano does provide helpful guidelines on specific new technologies and includes a how-to guide for activists wanting to take on companies that rely on animal testing. But as for her goal of eradicating the ""professional disagreement, bureaucratic inertia, and political maneuvering within the scientific and regulatory communities,"" this book won't attract the number of readers necessary to spark public outrage about current testing methods. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 12/01/1997
Release date: 12/01/1997
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Paperback - 242 pages - 978-1-85649-498-4
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