I read yesterday in the Times Online that British scientists are up in arms because they want to make human-animal hybrids and the politicians didn’t want to let them.
Scientists triumph in battle over ban on hybrid embryos
Plans to outlaw the creation of human-animal hybrid embryos for potentially life-saving stem cell research are to be dropped after a revolt by scientists.
The proposed government ban on fusing human DNA with animal eggs, which promises insights into incurable conditions such as Alzheimer’s and motor neuron disease, will be abandoned because of concerns among senior ministers that it will damage British science.
I remember reading back in the 80s about how, if we weren’t careful, we’d be creating some kind of grotesque man-animal hybrids with all this new genetic technology we were making. That we should think about what we were doing. There was even a great book (and lousy movie) called the Island of Dr. Moreau about this same subject.
Now scientists aren’t going as far as to create living creatures, but they are taking the first steps. And from the article, the reason seems clear: If they don’t do it, British science will look bad.
That’s right, nothing less than the reputation of British science is at stake, and something must be done (or prevented from being done). After all, we all know what it’s like when scientists lose the respect of their peers. At the conferences, the step on your shoes, flick your ears, give you wedgies, and tape signs to your back that say “British Scientists Are Man-Weasles, NOT!” It’s a sad sight.
I’m glad they’ve worked all that out. And I want to take a definite stand right now in favor of hybrid research. After all, in just a few minutes, a friend and I thought of some great jokes that are only possible because of these dedicated men and women.If you've read this far and you're interested in Agile, you should take my No-frills Agile Tune-up Email Course, and follow me on Twitter.