Steven Wise, founder of The Nonhuman Rights Project

Steven Wise–the founder and president of The Nonhuman Rights Project; he’s also an attorney, author, legal scholar and professor who’s taught at Harvard Law School–discusses how the law he was practicing (personal injury) shifted focus 30-plus
years ago upon reading Peter Singer’s “Animal Liberation.” His new focus became animal protection law. He traces his career path from there, including serving  a decade-long stint as president of the Animal Legal Defense Fund, and founding the The Nonhuman Rights Project. He outlines the NhRP’s mission (seeking legal rights for members of non-human species, so they gain “personhood” status ) and describes the painstaking NonHumanRightsProjectLogo_FinalSymbol-300x293process by which Wise and the organization’s 70 volunteers have analyzed countless court cases, looking for one that fits their specific criteria for the first case NhRP would get directly involved with, a process that’s already consumed some 30,000 hours. We explore some specifics of this scenario, including possible outcomes, speaking hypothetically in a number of ways about Lolita, the orca that’s lived at the Miami Seaquarium for 40 years.  (
ALSO: We spoke briefly with Mary Getten about the weekend-long workshop in communicating with animals she was slated to offer Feb. 16-17 in Sarasota. (
COMEDY CORNER: Tim Harmston’s “Seagull”  (

MUSIC: Cliff Richard’s “The Snake And The Bookworm,” R.E.M.’s “Animal,” instrumentals  

NAME THAT ANIMAL TUNE:  Pink Floyd’s “Several Species Of Small Furry Animals Gathered In A Cave And Grooving With A Pict”
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About the author
Duncan Strauss is the producer-host of “Talking Animals,” which he launched at KUCI in California in 2003, combining his passions for animals, radio, journalism, music and comedy. The show has aired since late 2005 on Tampa’s WMNF. Strauss lives in Jupiter Farms, FL with his family, including four cats, two horses and one dog. He spends each day talking to those animals, and maintains they talk right back to him, an as yet unverified claim.

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