The Frankenstein Syndrome Paul Greenberg July 28, 2006

It’s a juicy prospect for a fast-developing industry: billions in federal grants for experimentation on human embryos.

Experienced grant writers must be revving up their search engines by now, since state grants for such research are already becoming available in states like Connecticut and Illinois and, of course, California, that bellwether of the surreal American future.

U.S. President George W. Bush speaks out against federally-funded stem-cell research during an event at the White House in Washington July 19, 2006. Bush on Wednesday used his first veto to block legislation expanding embryonic stem cell research. REUTERS/Jason Reed (UNITED STATES)

This session, Congress got behind this Next Big Thing, voting to expand embryonic stem cell research. But for the moment this rush to experiment on human embryos has been thwarted by a presidential veto, which the House failed to override.

But only for the moment. This is but a pause in the march of scientism, not a stop. After all, it’s just one more slight little ethical boundary to be crossed on man’s march toward physical and mental perfection, aka The Abolition of Man. That was the title of C. S. Lewis’ percipient essay on the subject more than half a century ago.

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2 thoughts on “The Frankenstein Syndrome”

  1. The author is correct: the stem cell debate will prove to be a good example of unintended consequences. The evolution of the phrase ‘freedom of speech’ in this country should be instructive. These changes take place over decades and generations. One can chart it by watching the progression from Thomas Paine to Larry Flynt.

    I remember Kant’s quote of ‘from the timbers of humanity, nothing straight was ever fashioned’. By the time this atomization is complete (with approval from the voters, mind you), people will have nothing but organic appetites to define them.

    He that makes himself a beast loses the pain of being a man. And animals are known for their ferocity.

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