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The idea that animals might not feel pain as human beings feel it traces back to the 17th-century French philosopher, René Descartes, who argued that animals do not experience pain and suffering because they lack consciousness
Last year the infamous theologian William Lane Craig debated philosopher Stephen Law, and made the extraordinary claim that many mammals can’t feel pain, or, if they do “feel” pain, then they aren’t aware that they feel pain. Only “the higher primates and human beings,” claims Craig (“higher” of course, is a scientifically inaccurate term), are aware that they feel pain.