The Experimenter

„Look, he finally woke up,“ a female voice penetrated his ear. He was lying on a cold table. It was immediately clear to him which table it was, a clinically clean one, his experiment table, to which he had already strapped so many animals. The times when you could nail the animals that science played games with were unfortunately over. How much he wished he had lived Claude Bernards or Rene Descartes at the time. You could still do whatever you wanted in your laboratory without someone constantly messing with you. But these days, every little thing on a mouse had to justify yourself as if a mouse or 10,000 or more were involved. They, he and his team, did a great job for science. He tried to sit up, but he was chained to the table. He could not lift his arms or legs an inch. Even the head was fixed with a neck cuff, so that he could not even turn it from left to right, but could only look straight ahead, in the middle of the blackest darkness as it seemed to him.

“I just hit him lightly on the head. For that he had stepped away for a long time,“ he heard another, also female voice, as he suspected, and at the same moment noticed how his head hurt.
„Damn it, what’s the point,“ he suddenly blurted out, „You can’t strap me in there like some creature.“
„Some creature“, the first repeated mockingly, „Not like your laboratory animals, which you cut, scald, poison, pest …“
„That’s all for the blessing of mankind,“ he repeated a sentence that he must have repeated hundreds of times, often enough to believe it himself.
“What did you find out in your experiments that is useful for mankind?”, asked the second voice, “That mice die of exhaustion if you let them kick for life in a water container for long enough? That gerbils suffer hearing damage when exposed to 115 decibels?“
“But in the end,” the first voice intervened, “only human experiments are meaningful. Do not you think so?“
„Of course, but we are not allowed to do that,“ said the doctor with great certainty.
„Well then we’ll do it without permission,“ replied the female voice. The light was finally turned on, but his joy about it was short-lived, because it was a single spotlight aimed directly at his face. But he couldn’t turn his head away, just close his eyes if he wanted to escape the glaring light that hurt his eyes.
„Turn it off again,“ he demanded.
“You see, it goes that fast, we already have a first insight,” said the second woman smugly, “The bright light in the eyes hurts. It can happen that quickly, with so-called scientific knowledge.“
„Why are you doing this?“ Came the crucial question from his side.
„So that you can finally find out what it feels like to be helplessly at the mercy of someone else without knowing what he is going to do with you,“ the first woman answered promptly. “But these are only animals that are specially bred for it. They don’t feel anything,” he said defiantly.
“But if they don’t feel anything, how can you test the effectiveness of painkillers on them?”, then interjected the second woman.
„If you test it on enough species, there is a certain analogy for humans,“ said the experimenter.
„Then you have to feel something,“ said the first woman.
“Yes, but these are just nerve reactions. They don’t feel the way people do”, the gentleman, who usually demonstrated his superiority in a white coat, tried a somewhat tired attempt to justify himself.
„Maybe we should open his skull and examine his brain, locate the spot that made him think of all the cruelty,“ suggested the first.
„That’s unnecessary, we won’t find anything interesting under the skull,“ replied the second, „but we could open his chest and watch his heart beating.“
“Not good either, there is sure to be a yawning emptiness because it doesn’t have a heart,” replied the other, “But you know what, we’re going now. It’s late and I’m tired.” Despite all the protests from the gentleman at the experiment table, they left the building. The next morning his students found him. After this experience he is said to have turned to the cultivation of bacteria and to have become an advocate of cruelty-free research.

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