HC Deb 10 June 1912 vol 39 cc515-6

asked the Home Secretary whether his attention had been called to a shop in Piccadilly and to one recently opened in Oxford Street, in which were exhibited stuffed animals tied down for an imaginary operation and suggesting that animals were tortured by vivisection; and whether, having regard to the congestion of passenger traffic due to the nature of such exhibits and the bad effects thereby produced on sensitive and uninformed people, he would take steps to prevent the public display of such shows?


My attention has been drawn to these shops, but the police report that they have not caused any congestion of traffic. I regret that I have no power to prevent such displays. The persons responsible for them can only damage their cause by adopting methods which are calculated to spread the false belief that in this country cutting operations are allowed to be performed on animals without anaæsthetics. The recent report of the Royal Commission condemned this method of propaganda.


Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that there are practitioners of vivisection certificated to perform such operations without anæsthetics; and is it not a fact that the illustrations in these shops are illustrations of actual experiments, that the instruments shown are those which are on sale for the purpose, and that practically the whole of these illustrations are taken from medical publications?


I understand that my hon. Friend is in conflict with the Royal Commission on the subject. I can only remind him that the whole of the circumstances were carefully considered by the Commission, and they reported against this particular form of propaganda.


Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that nearly all men of science—


The hon. Member seems, to be about to give a general opinion.