Isn’t a half-human, half-animal creature the stuff of mythology? Well not any more. The British House of Commons has just this week passed an animal-human hybrid law. British MP’s have granted scientists the license to create any kind of hybrid (human and animal combination) including those derived from cloning, animal eggs and human sperm, genetic engineering and more. The Human Fertilization and Embryology Bill will allow researchers to empty an animal egg and fill it with human genetic materials. The caveat: these cloned human-animal hybrid embryos are then allowed to live for just 14 days before they are to be destroyed.
The folks in charge claim that this is necessary for the progress of embryonic stem cell research. Human eggs are just too hard to come by—too painful for human females to donate and too expensive for researchers to obtain. So we gotta have animal-human hybrids… It doesn’t matter that embryonic stem cell research has yet to yield even one successful medical treatment for humans and adult stem cell research (which doesn’t destroy human embryos) has given the world, at last count, some 75 new and successful treatments.
Has Britain shown us the slippery slope? Is the next step to legalize the “production” of biological chimeras—creatures that are composites of several animals, including part human. We are well on our way toward having the technology. We could create a creature made from an equal number of cells from two species that would look like one species, but contain the organs, genes and intelligence of another species. Just think of the possibilities and the positive benefits to mankind! We can then send these creatures to fight our wars for us, spend them to do space exploration, keep our full-human brothers and sisters safe from any dangerous or unpleasant situation. Or imagine some creature having the appearance of a human, but stuck with the intelligence of a cow.
The people who block the production of genetically-engineered (GE) foods to feed a starving developing world are the same people who champion laws such as this new “Frankensteinian” law in Britain. I guess they have a problem with genetically modified ears of corn, but don’t see any problem with animals having a human’s ears, DNA, or brain.