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IN BIOLOGY AS ELSEWHERE, POWER ****IS**** RESPONSIBILITY, WHETHER YOU USE IT OR NOT


Now scientists are breeding pigs to supply parts to save human lives and functions. They have found that they can remove the characteristic from pigs that makes human bodies reject transplants from pigs to people.

At first, those who opposed human embryo research said they would support a huge program of research on using adult stem cells instead. But now they just want to hide behind the Bible and take no responsibility.

Embryo research will probably not be that important in the long run. But what infuriates me is the people who think that God is going to protect them from MORAL decisions.

The advance of science is our MORAL responsibility. If you decide NOT to use the biological revolution, that is as much a MORAL CHOICE as suing it. When we use it, as we have to increase third world population, that is OUR MORAL RESPONSIBILITY.

But I hate the fact that so many people use it as an excuse to avoid all the real, hard decisions about the biological revolution. They think that if they just attack stem cell research and use God, they don't have to think about all the other ways we are playing God right now.

When I demanded that those who take a stand on this issue first tell me how they would handle the problem of the Boy in the Bubble in France (May 12, 2001 - FRANCE - THE BOY IN THE BUBBLE).

Only one replied, and he avoided it.

A DIFFERENT reader was more honest. He said the whole thing just worried him. Here is my reply:

"Bob, I am no expert and can be seriously wrong in what I think I know."

Bob's Reply:

"So can I. But I KNOW it, unlike those who just quote selected passages of the Bible to protect themselves from reality.

Of course, as I keep saying, all the biological revolution is extremely dangerous, including the parts of it for which there are no convenient Bible passages.

But those who use God to avoid real decisions act as if it were all happening in a vacuum.

But in the real world all those kids are being born in the third world and the "Christians" say that's just fine because they say it's "natural." There is nothing natural about the survival of all those children. It is a direct result of our medical and agricultural sciences.

We play God a million times every day.

Back to the French boy in the bubble, the one everybody tries to ignore. If you can save that child's life by creating an embryo BUT REFUSE TO DO SO, you are STILL playing God.

I have yet to hear a single person address any of these other very real moral problems we are responsible for. To repeat, stem cell research does not occur in a vacuum.

I know what you mean. I wish I could just quote a Bible passage and avoid all the hard decisions. You are not trying that blasphemous easy out, and I appreciate it."

 

ANOTHER EXAMPLE


Some years back a couple with one child found that the child had a fatal disease. They had to have a transplant from a sibling. So they conceived a child to give a kidney to that child, since the child could live well with only one of her own.

Pulpits exploded coast-to-coast. This was Evil. Children should be conceived in the stinking alleys of the third world whenever those people feel like it, but it was Evil for a child to be brought into the world to save another.

The parents received thousands of hostile letters and a number of death threats.

But now nobody claims "credit" for all that terrorizing. The two children have been alive and well for some time. Just like the preachers who fought vaccination in 1800, no one will now claim "credit" for what they said then.

Don't preach to me about the biological revolution unless you also take responsibility for the population revolution science is producing. And please address the examples I give.

Could you sit there, look the parents in the eye and say the kid just has to die?

No decent person could. But I know that no one is going to deal with these questions. People who quote convenient parts of the Bible to say that God protects them from moral choices have no moral courage.

 

 

WHEN PREACHERS AND PROFESSORS AGREE ON SOMETHING, BEWARE!


It is essential that we understand the enormous similarity between the year 2000 and the year 1800.

The year 1800 introduced a century when medicine marched a hundred times farther in a single century than it had in all of previous history. In 1800, university authorities in medicine were untied against this revolution. They were defending bleeding quarts of blood from sick people as the main treatment for disease and fighting the idea that doctors need to wash their hands, along with everything else that might save lives.

In 1800 as now, the preachers and professors were on the same side. Preachers were fighting vaccinations against smallpox. In fact, I do not know of a single medical advance in the entire period from 1800 to 1900 that preachers did not use the Bible to oppose.

The same is true today, and once against the whole thing is so obviously absurd only a respectable conservative would fail to notice it.

Just a few years back all the professors were pushing moral relevance. There were no absolute rules, they said.

But then came cloning and the biological revolution. Instantly they invented a field call "Ethics." Suddenly they have PhD's who were concentrating on moral relevance yesterday and who are now "biological ethicists." And exactly as in1800, academics are standing shoulder-to-shoulder with the preachers against the coming revolution.

 

TODAY AS IN 1800 THE PREACHERS AND PROFESSORS HAVE DIFFERENT GOALS, BUT THE SAME STAND


Today, as in 1800, many preachers want use God to give their followers an easy way out of facing moral decisions. Today, as in 1800, the professors oppose the revolution because it upsets everything their old theories - which never WORKED - stood on.

Our whole social policy is based on the idea that genetics means nothing. If we have a social problem, we just turn it over to the psychologists, the sociologists, and the economists. But since the biological revolution began, anybody can see how ridiculous this idea is.

Anything that genetics takes over, the social sciences lose. And social scientists rule on all discussions of social policy on all our campuses. Asking a social science professor to compare heredity with environment is exactly like asking a social worker whether all social programs should be abolished.

 

HOW POWERFUL WILL THE POWER OF BIOLOGY GET IN THIRTY YEARS?


I am the only person on earth who remembers it, but for a few minutes during the 1969 moon mission, the world was sweating blood. One astronaut was circling the moon in the main vehicle while the other two went down to surface in a smaller one.

Then the two came back in the smaller vehicle and were supposed to link up with the main one to go back to earth. They and the other astronaut expected to know when the two hooked up together from the loud "Click" it would make.

Time passed and there was no click. Everybody was worried sick because the instruments showed that everything was going perfectly.

Finally, they realized that the computers doing the hook up were so powerful and did such a perfect job that there had been no "Click!" We simply could not get used to the computer age, where things are done with such inhuman perfection.

That incredibly powerful computer that put those vehicles together with such perfection in 1969 was inhumanly perfect.

Now here's the punch line:

Every single "Tickle Me Elmo" doll has a computer in it that is more powerful than that one.

Power is responsibility, and the power of the biological revolution has not even begun. God is not going to protect anyone from this moral responsibility.

 

 
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Issue: Jan. 26, 2002
Editor: Virgil H. Huston, Jr.
2001 WhitakerOnLine.org


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