Let people be their own animal

Photo by Vicki Harris

Photo by Vicki Harris

In what may be one of the more stunning pronouncements I have read from a paper in a long time, the London Daily Mail wrote an article stating that "scientists have created more than 150 human-animal hybrid embryos in British Laboratories."

Now, in case you are wondering how they managed to do such a thing, the British enacted a law called "the 2008 Human Fertilization Embryology Act." This allows scientists to successfully co-mingle human sperm with fertilized animal eggs, or use a human nucleus implanted into an animal cell, which creates a cybrid, or human cells mixed in with animal embryos, to create a chimeras.

I'm not much of a biologist but this does not sound like a very good idea to me.

I read about all of this in an article in National Review by Mark Steyn. He correctly notes that the British are still somewhat skeptical concerning this type scientific endeavor and in his words are "aware of the pitfalls of injecting Ozzy Osbourne's brain into an orangutan." Well, well, well, at least they recognize some risks exist in this practice.

I can't help but wonder who would be more upset about having Ozzy Osbourne's brain cells injected, the orangutan or Ozzy? For that matter, if the orangutan had part of his brain injected into Ozzy's, who would be the winner?

It seems to me that we have enough problems in the human race without injecting animal genes into the system. And on the other side of the coin, take, for example, sheep. They seem relatively serene and happy being, well, just sheep. Can you imagine what will happen to the sheep species if human cells are now allowed to be injected into their DNA?

Let's take the average female sheep. To me, she seems pretty level-headed and content to meander around the pasture eating grass, producing wool and occasionally bahing when trouble arises. Now, inject her with some of Nancy Grace's emotional DNA. Before you know it, the sheep will be at the back door of the farmhouse, banging on the door, demanding that Farmer Jones be given 10-15 years for staring at his neighbor's 16-year-old daughter.

Imagine shooting one of the local cows up with a little of Al Gore's genes. Pretty soon the cow would refuse to eat any grain because too many fossil fuels are used to produce it. The bulls would refuse to eat clover because it produces too much gas which might harm the ozone layer.

Imagine if we injected a pride of lions with some liberal Democrat's DNA. Before you know it, the lions would refuse to hunt and they'd be standing in line waiting on free cheese and applying for another 26-week extension on the unemployment checks.

On the other hand, if you shoot up a gazelle with a right-wing Republican's genetic code, before you know it they'll be bludgeoning a cheetah to death and all running around with AK47s and a United States flag lapel on their chest.

To be fair, I guess we could shoot up a bunch of apes with Libertarian DNA genes, but before you know it they'd all be sitting around smoking a bong and trying to legalize drugs.

I don't know why mankind can't leave well enough alone. We've done a pretty good job of screwing up the human race.

Let a dog be a dog, a cat be a cat, and politicians remain clowns.

Contact columnist T. Gamble at t@colliergamble.com.