More compassion for dogs than for adult humans?

According to u.S. Psychologists, compassion depends mainly on how old and how dependent a fellow human or. A dog is

Jack levin, an expert on mass murder and other violent crimes who teaches sociology and criminology at northwestern university, and his colleague arnold arluke presented a study at the annual meeting of the american sociological association that the association apparently found so important or attention-grabbing that they published a news release about it.

Image: f.R.

The two sociologists claim to have found out that people feel more sympathy for dogs and puppies when they are beaten than for adult humans. However, when it comes to children, this does not apply. We did not need to have compassion for people rather than animals, levin said. It is a "a more complex situation", because age plays an important role: "the fact that adult victims of crime receive less sympathy than a child, puppy, or adult dog suggests that adult dogs are viewed as dependent and vulnerable in a similar way to puppies and children."

How did the sociologists find out?. They reportedly submitted one of four fictional news articles to 240 men and women between the ages of 18 and 25 who were studying at their university. It was about a one-year-old child, an adult, a puppy or a six-year-old dog being beaten. The story was always told identically, only the victim was different in each case. Then the subjects were asked to indicate their sympathy for the victim on a scale. This is a highly abstract context in which the test subjects, who do not represent a representative sample for the population as a whole, were asked to rate their feelings at a rough distance from reality, because they were only conveyed by text. In addition, the test subjects could only classify their compassion in the respective case, but not in the comparison of the different victims. According to levin, age plays a decisive role, not whether the victims are dogs or humans. Adults were shown less empathy because they are seen as being able to protect themselves. Adult dogs, on the other hand, were judged like puppies, there was no significant difference between pity for puppies and pity for children. However, it all depends on the story. If the dog was aggressive or if the adult became a victim of violence explicitly innocently, for example because he belonged to a minority, the judgments were allowed to be different.

This could be a proof that anthropocentrism is not so strong. The sociologists ame that a similar effect can be observed in cats as well. However, these are pets in western societies that live in close relationships with people and sometimes already ame the status of children. They are attributed, as levon rightly says, human characteristics. This was done against "farm animals" like cattle or pigs already make much less, and when dogs go into the cooking pot, empathy could not be so rough either.

It would have been really interesting to see how the empathy between animals, not only pets, and humans was distributed, if in addition also "enemies" or those to which the subjects were prejudiced. As is well known, such people are also often called vermin, which means denying them the right to live and also compassion. But this would have become a bit complex even for the execution of the experiment. However, if you want cheaper attention with a "scientific study" can find, why then not with less effort, but with populist results?

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