When reminded about death, people are more likely to support the killing of animals, independent of how supportive they are of animal rights

A research study showed that when people were primed to think about death (for example, by seeing the word quickly flash on a screen), they were then more likely to support the killing of animals in hypothetical questions (for example, whether it’s ok to harm animals as part of an experiment). The effect was present for subjects independent of their feelings on animal rights.

The study supports “terror management theory” that states that people try to boost their own self-esteem when confronted with the fear of death. In turn, the hypothesis is that in order, people unconsciously put themselves in a position of superiority to animals.

Summary here. Full research here.

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