News from the Natural World: Chimps have begun self identifying as humans to be granted human rights.
A Chimpanzee at the Bronx Zoo named Claudia has become the first Chimp to self identify as a human being. Not only is she the first chimp to do so it is also believed she is the first animal to deliberately self identify as another species. Campaigners had been fighting for years for chimps to be granted similar basic rights to humans but had largely failed.
Legal campaigners had filed habeas corpus cases on behalf of 4 chimps whose imprisonment deprived them of their autonomy and ability to engage in their natural behaviour. Furthermore, they argued that the chimps must be recognized as legal persons with fundamental rights to bodily liberty. But not a single one of the claims was successful and none of the chimps were set free. Claudia knew she had to take matters into her own hands.
Chimps self identifying for human rights
Zookeepers at the Bronx Zoo had fitted a TV into Claudia’s enclosure. Every day she watched report after report streaming into her cell. Updates on foreign wars she didn’t understand, humans constantly trying to outdo each other and her favourite program, the children’s classic “Bananas in Pyjamas”. One day she heard a debate about human self-identification. The ability to self identify as another sex. Claudia had her eureka moment!
She knew what she had to do, she decided she would self identify as a human. It was her only chance, the only way to escape her cage, to be free of daily torment and gaping children banging on the glass. She longed for distant steaming jungles of Liberia and the freedom of the treetops. She knew it was her only chance and submitted her application to self identify as a human.
Chimps deserve basic human rights
Claudia’s claim was met with incredible interest because Chimps are genetically closest to humans. They share about 98.6% of our DNA. In fact, we share more of our DNA with Chimps than with monkeys or other groups, or even with other great apes. We also both play, have complex emotions and intelligence, and a very similar physical makeup. She was sure that she would be allowed to change her species and finally be free of her cage.
As the legal case intensifies rumors are circulating that other Great Apes such as the Bonobo, Orangutan, and Gorilla are also thinking of self-identifying. This is undoubtedly a huge move by the Chimps as they finally decide to self identify as humans in order to be granted human rights.
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