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Cat dissection is mandated! HELP!!!


veganbarbie
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I am finishing my degree in Kinesiology, and I have one class left to complete the major...human anatomy.

 

The first day I asked the teacher for a humane alternative to the cat dissection (yes, a cat) and he got angry and said I didn't belong in the class if I didn't want to dissect anything. I reminded him of the laws in California that say that I can opt out of dissection, and mentioned that kinesiology (exercise science) majors don't operate on people so it would be doubley useless. I also pointed out that I have a 4.0 grade average at this college, 3.8 overall so obviously I'm not just asking this to be lazy and get out of work. I thought it was settled.

 

Well, today at the end of lecture he told me that the head of the biology department wanted to speak to me (what, I'm suddenly 12 again and being called to the principle's office?) so I went upstairs to see her.

 

She told me that the state requires them to show me certain things in class. I told her that the state requires the school to offer a humane alternative and that I don't have to dissect. She said "The law doesn't say that you have to pass the class, though." She then proceded to call me a hypocrite because I was benefitting from all of the great things that have been discovered from dissection, and tried to tell me about all the amusing internal abnormalities her classes had found in cats.

 

She told me that I could choose not to participate, but I will have to remain in the room and watch the dissection (and breathe in formaldehyde, which is known to cause cancer, allergies, etc.) if I expect to take the class. I need this class to graduate.

 

I told her that I would try, but I explained taht it was like asking a religious woman to work as a prostitue for her grade. I've been sick and upset with stomach pain all day. I sent her some information from Peta on why dissections are wrong and the Peta video "Classroom Cut-ups." but I doubt that she'll even bother to read or watch.

 

I'm really pissed now. There are laws to protect people like me from people like her, but I still have to go to this school for 3 more years because I'm finishing my Psychology transfer program and getting my bachelor's through the university center on the same campus, so I don't want to make too much trouble, either, and right now I can't figure out what to do.

 

Any advice would help..

 

Thanks.

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She told me that the state requires them to show me certain things in class. I told her that the state requires the school to offer a humane alternative and that I don't have to dissect. She said "The law doesn't say that you have to pass the class, though."

It make no sense that a law would require schools to provide alternatives to dissection but also allow them to fail students for using the alternative! So she must be wrong--the law surely must require that students' grades cannot be influenced by whether they chose the dissection or an alternative.

 

I would recommend doing a little more research on this. She is probably not well informed. Let her know what the school is required to do and give her some ideas of the alternatives to dissection. What is it that they are trying to teach you with dissection? (Personally, I can't possible imagine what they expect students to get from it.) Give her ideas of other ways you can learn that same information. This kind of information probably exists on the internet.

 

OKay, I just reread and saw that the class is human anatomy. Why are you required to dissect a cat for human anatomy?? I don't see any reason you even need an alternative activity. But perhaps you could watch video of human autopsy or surgery or something like that.

 

Good luck!

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I just reread and saw that the class is human anatomy. Why are you required to dissect a cat for human anatomy?? I don't see any reason you even need an alternative activity. But perhaps you could watch video of human autopsy or surgery or something like that.

I agree.

 

Contact PCRM (Physician's Committee for Responsible Medicine). They may be able to help you with your legal rights (which I am sure include the right to not fail because you refuse to dissect a cat!).

 

(Your teachers suck! )

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Tell her you'd rather disect a human (corpse) since it is a human anatomy class. I've heard of people doing that, but not cats. There might also be a student legal service that you pay for with tuition that you could use. At my old school there was student's rights office with a legal staff. I hope you are not in this class yet and having to do an autopsy tomorrow...I think trying not to be forced to perform it will take some time. I think though for any dissection you will have to breathe formaldyde. I bet you've been around cigarette smoke which is just as bad, if not worse. In any case good luck with this.

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my one class wanted me to do the same thing cause I was going for Athletid Training. I told her politely I will not participate, and she said I would fail, so I told her Id rather fail and stick to my convictions than do something immoral.and irrelevant to what I was learning.

 

so basically told her to f*ck off in a nice way

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I was a bio major at a private college and I got out of dissection...it was a catholic school so they could have failed me if they wanted too but they didn't. Anyway I know PETA has ways of getting around it if you contact them. They have complete programs on dissection for animal lovers and have even gotten some schools to mandate offering alternatives before courses even begin so some people that are not strong minded enough to say something won't have too

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She says because its a commuinity college they can do this.. and that is another reason i posted it, bc when i go back to school If i chose to get my masters, it will be at the local community college

 

worries me, bc i hear they dissect cats there for the program, its the only reason im not there now..

 

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Community Colleges are publicly funded so your teachers blowing smoke up your ass...public schools need to be more open than privage...private schools are technically allowed to fail your or not accept you for race, or skin color if they want to but public schools cannot...just think of it in terms of religion...if you were hindu or buddhist they would say different...vegans and ethics aren't respected by non-vegans but religion is in most cases

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  • 2 months later...

I managed to get excused from dissection in high school but in college I had to. I was caught off guard by it. I didn't have any forewarning that our class was going to be doing something like that otherwise I would've talked to the dean. I was lead to believe that the laws that protect public education (ie high school) did not apply to private universities. It was do it or fail the assignment and I was barely passing the class as it was. It was a very traumatizing experience. It didn't involve cutting into but rather skinning to study the muscular skeletal system. I remember my professor yelling at me and I was almost in tears. I wish I had a do-over and I could've walked out of the class and dropped the course.

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If you know how to threaten a program with protest its not too hard to scare a school(even private) to give exceptions to students with ethical concerns...if you were hindu it wouldn't have ever came up as a problem...you just have to say its religious discrimination...or say that its wrong to allow someone a free pass for religion and not a free pass for some other ethical purpose

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