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Resurrection and Luddism

Yes, I’m supposed to be on hiatus, but I’m stuck at home waiting for window installers. Might as well blog.

This Daily Mail article isn’t really news, since the idea of resurrecting a mammoth from frozen sperm has been making the rounds for several years. What’s interesting about the article is the attitude expressed in the comments section (cherry picked here for brevity):

It is a very intriguing and exciting idea. I personally do not have any problem with the thought of procreation through this method of retrieving shelved sperm. If dinosaurs, mammoths and dodos could be walking again on the face of the earth, I think it would be a landmark in achievement of science.

What I somewhat resent though, is the possibility of cloning or insemination in view of duplicating or procreating individuals like Hitler, Yvan the Terrible, Stalin, Lenin, Mussolini, Henry the VIII etc.

It is about time that to ram down taboos and move on to unrestricted scientific ventures as long as they can be ethical, moral and spiritually dignifying and edifying.

– Sham Naarai, Mauritius

Yet again, someone confusing biological cloning (making what amounts to an after-the-fact identical twin) with sci-fi “cloning” (making an identical copy of an individual). Since no one has any way of copying memories, character, aquired brain structure, and other experience-influenced attributes from one individual to another, this should hardly be a concern. And never mind that even if it were possible, we do not have the source material for any of those individuals…their dead brains being somewhat less than fresh.

I liked Jurassic Park, but this might not be such a good idea in practice.

– Ryk, London

Cool! Just protect their ivory from poachers.

– Paul, Southampton, Hampshire

What’s the point?

Global warming will kill them quicker than it’s the Polar Bear.

– Simon, Leicestershire

Having been interested in pre-historical animals all my life, I found it difficult to take-in that scientists would even consider bring back the Mammoth. They lived during the last Ice Age and environmenal changes brought about their extinction. But they did exist in America when humans arrived there, and the humans killed them all off. I think that it would be a mistake to bring them back. what would be the point? We know how good scientists are at their jobs, there is no need sot show off.

– Dean Campbell, Staffordshire

It scares me to think of what scientists may be doing, probably better not to know, we don’t have any power to do anything about it anyway.

– Beryl Mcdiarmid., Usson du Poitou. France.

The attitude is a mix between luddism (opposition to new technology), misanthropy (humans are bad and not to be trusted with such power), and fatalism (the world is doomed anyhow, what does it matter?). Not a good omen for the future.

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