man is not the master of everything

Hong Deok Guo, Research Fellow, Institute for Communication and Public Policy Research, Postech
hong deok go
Researcher at Postech Public Policy and Communication Research Institute

‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ is the representative film of the Marvel franchise. A total of three episodes have been made so far, and the series has been loved by many fans for subverting the grammar of existing superhero movies with clever but twisted imagery. The heroes of the film are not ordinary heroes with a sense of duty. Rather, they are a closer universe of people, each with a dark and scarred past, and who hide their pain with sad or humorous demeanor. Even those who are not full superhumans like Superman can save the universe if they join forces as a team.

If the first and second episodes show the possibility of a new bond arising from the violence of blood relations and social ties through Star Lord’s history, as a tool to achieve the goal of becoming a divine being, was newly released. Off the Galaxy: Volume 3′ expands on the theme of empathy towards non-humans. Rocket is the main character of the third episode, ‘Talking Raccoon’. The ‘High Evolutionist’, a bioengineer who wanted to create perfect beings, experimented with re-creating animal bodies to endow them with intelligence, and the rocket was the subject of his experiment. The re-enactment process has been described as cruel and gruesome, with many animals going insane or dying from the side effects.

Another animal can be seen being sacrificed by humans in the film. This is Cosmo, a ‘psychic dog’ inspired by ‘Laika’, a dog that was sent into space. During the Cold War, when space competition between the United States and the Soviet Union was fierce, the Soviet Union sent spacecraft carrying animals such as dogs and monkeys instead of humans to collect data needed for the development of human spaceflight. . Its purpose was to collect information about the effects of the launch process on the animal’s body, leaving the atmosphere and entering outer space. All of these animals died a painful death during launch or after entering space. Since they were not human, there was no plan to get them to safety. The achievements of space development, such as space shuttles, moon landings and space stations, shine above the death of these animals.

The scientific civilization we enjoy is built on the death of countless other species. Horseshoe crab blood is needed to make a vaccine, and many horseshoe crabs that survive are said to die of emaciation after the blood is drawn. Additionally, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, increased global demand for vaccines and overfishing of horseshoe crabs has led to a rapid population decline, raising the risk of extinction. Furthermore, it is difficult to count the number of experimental animals euthanized for drug development or other scientific purposes.

In the medium and long term, it is important to find a way to develop drugs that are safe for the human body without testing them on animals. First of all, clearly recognize the existence of animals slaughtered in the name of scientific progress and have a guilty mind towards them. Man has no right to exploit and kill other species. We just rationalize it to our needs and benefits. Men are not the master of everything, but are like usurers. How long can this last? Are there any other possibilities?

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