England’s Catholic Bishops say “Chimeras” have a right to life.

While the Bush Administration continues to restrict stem cell research here in the U.S., over in the U.K. they’re drafting up laws to regulate research using Chimeras — animal embryos with human cells in them and vice versa — so that researchers know what they are and aren’t allowed to do with these hybrid organisms. Scientists will have permission to create these organisms so long as they destroy them two weeks later.

It’s the sort of thing you’d expect the Catholic Bishops to be opposed to and in fact they are just that, but they’ve also taken a rather surprising stance on the issue:

The bishops, who believe that life begins at conception, said that they opposed the creation of any embryo solely for research, but they were also anxious to limit the destruction of such life once it had been brought into existence.

In their submission to the committee, they said: “At the very least, embryos with a preponderance of human genes should be assumed to be embryonic human beings, and should be treated accordingly.

“In particular, it should not be a crime to transfer them, or other human embryos, to the body of the woman providing the ovum, in cases where a human ovum has been used to create them.

“Such a woman is the genetic mother, or partial mother, of the embryo; should she have a change of heart and wish to carry her child to term, she should not be prevented from doing so.”

Yes, the Catholic Bishops over there are actually arguing that human embryos with animal cells/DNA in them should be allowed to continue to term if the mother so desires. I totally wouldn’t have expected that sort of argument from them as it raises all sorts of ethical issues not to mention it’s not even clear these hybrids would be viable. It certainly adds a new dimension to the nickname “Johnny the Dog Faced Boy.”

9 thoughts on “England’s Catholic Bishops say “Chimeras” have a right to life.

  1. Would said chimeras be eligible for the olympics? Since they are part beast would they have soul? What is the cut off point for a soul? Since you wouldn’t be able to call them man does that mean they have to go back to animal sacrifice to get salvation? Jesus saved man not beast, so I would have to say yes to the blood rituals when it comes to halfs breeds. Can a half beast even get into heaven? Why the fuck do I care? Wait I don’t care at all. Wait, wait, just look into my eyes and count the give a fucks. There ain’t none there, so I say let the half beasts come.

  2. At the very least, embryos with a preponderance of human genes should be assumed to be embryonic human beings, and should be treated accordingly.

    WOW!  That’s right folks, the Catholic Bishop is really that fucking stupid.

    LOL timmeh!  But you do raise some interesting points with the questions.  And I don’t think the Bishop really thought about what he was saying.  I don’t think he wants to go there.

  3. Cool!  Now we’ll have cat-people and stuff, and they’ll all be Catholic.  It’s becoming clear to me now.  Thanks to my Eagle Eyes!!!  surprised

    Actually, there is a deeper meaning to this issue; the human soul actually resides in DNA.  Remember folks, you heard it here first.  or there.  Whatever.

  4. I’m waiting for a dog person, so I can have a loyal friend who wants to play catch all day long while providing conversation!

  5. I heard from somewhere that approximately 60% of (total) human dna is the same as that of a banana. Much of human dna also comes from virii.

    I’d always wondered about red xiii‘s lineage

  6. you havn’t tried it yet? nice & frothy with a slight crunchy texture.

    I’m waiting to hear of the comercialisation of the squilkshake (squid+blender=…)

  7. I may be going out on a limb here but: technically I’d imagine that the Catholic church’s stance could be explained as a profound wish to gain many new – and blessedly “stupider” (less interfering with the “infallibility” that way) – converts so that through superior numbers their power in the world will be upheld. A time-honored strategy which some believe the Catholic church has used before. Look for campaigns suggesting that any mixed breeds should be permitted to “vote” (in the US) as the church declares them “just as good as the real thing.” (and maybe better, in the private opinions of the church leadership) Science comes up with something that the church can “finally,” really “get behind” and cheer for, who would have thought it would happen?

    You say attendance and tithes are flagging? Bad priest stories in the media got you down? Well hold on, just press the little button and “presto,” instant overflowing cage of not so bright, loyal and totally subservient followers, what more could a pope wish for?

  8. I don’t get how they can believe in the scientific method when it suits them, but are so quick to dismiss it when it finds flaws with their dogma.

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