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Friday, January 18, 2008


Apparently the Vatican has "slammed" some company for doing cloning work. I don't know what company, I didn't read the news story and I don't need to. It's the same old crap every day.
  • Somebody does something new that may have benefits
  • Some conservative or religious throws a fit about it
  • Followers of said conservative/religious authority also throw a fit about it
On the train the other day, 4 old people were talking about cloning, cloned food in particular.

person 1: I don't have any problem with cloned food. If it's good and cheap, I'll eat it.
person 2: Me too, I don't really care about it.
person 3: Well, I do! I'm not eating no cloned food.
person 4: Why not? what's wrong with it?
person 3: I don't know, but I'm not eating it. It's just a bunch of scientists playing god, and we don't even know if it's dangerous.

This is exactly my point in a nutshell. Person 3 above "knows" that cloned food is "bad", but doesn't know how he knows it. Can't explain why it's bad, but he knows that it is and he can't be reasoned with.

I don't have a problem with cloning or cloned food. In the case of meat, I can't really see how cloning is really an economical or even desirable alternative to the "natural method" of "new cow production". Genetic engineering has been having a great effect in fruit and vegetable productions, and cloning is just another tool that scientists have to continue that process.

Cloning is, more or less, creating a genetic copy of one organism, and using that copy to grow a new organism. A cloned animal (in an ideal situation) should be identical to the original, and shouldn't be harmful in any new or exotic way. A hamburger made from a cloned cow should be the same quality and composition as a hamburger made from a non-cloned cow. There are, of course, the ethical issues to consider in that cloning is not fool-proof, and a majority of cloned embryos are damaged by the cloning process and are not viable. I also don't consider this point to be an issue, but I can see where other people might.

The pope doesnt want us "playing god" by manipulating genes and cells. The pope also doesn't want us to have sex, and when we do have sex he only wants us to do it in certain ways. Sex, according to the pope, should really be considered no more then the mechanics behind "new human production". I think that if we are going to take the fun and the love and the excitement out of the whole process, we may as well be doing it in the lab anyway.

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