Carrie Griffin-Bases

Private, Public, or Compassionate: Animal Rights and Disability Rights Laws

By, Carrie Griffin-Bases


Rights under American law can be conceived of in a variety of ways—from individual entitlements to the more popular notion of rights as trumps of an individual against government interference. As applied, however, the laws create a hierarchy of access to autonomy and integrity rights. Privacy is not the same for everyone, when viewed through the lenses of disability and animal rights paradigms. Griffin-Basas shows that for human animals with disabilities, and for nonhuman animals, “privacy” rights are too often used to mask abuses and injustices committed against them by the state or private actors.


Carrie Griffin Basas, J.D. is an assistant law professor at the University of Tulsa, teaching disability rights, constitutional law, and ethics.  Before coming to Tulsa, she was a visiting assistant professor at Penn State University and a visiting researcher at the University of Virginia. Her research interests include the intersection of disability law, animal rights, bioethics, and feminist legal theory. She has published her work in Disability Studies Quarterly, The Review of Disability Studies, The Berkeley Journal of Employment and Labor Law, and The Food and Drug Law Journal. She is one of the first women in the U.S. with a visible disability to hold a tenure-track position teaching law. Before becoming a law professor, Professor Basas was a disability rights advocate in nonprofit settings. Today, she serves on the Advisory Board of the Mitsubishi Electric America Foundation and the American Bar Association’s Commission on Physical and Mental Disability Law. Professor Basas is a graduate of Swarthmore College and Harvard Law School.  In 2001, the Ethel Louise Armstrong Foundation recognized her for “changing the face of disability,” and in 2002, the American Association of People with Disabilities named her as an emerging leader in disability rights.


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