In an insightful essay (published in an excellent anthology edited by Martha Nussbaum and Cass Sunstein, which also includes other sources cited in this series of posts) that juxtaposed doppelgänger folklore to the modern cloning debate, historian Wendy Doniger tellingly observed that ‘myths, like vampires, are undead.’ Having met a few myths about asexual reproduction in the foregoing discussion, we can note another recursive parallel: like vampires, myths hate catching sight of themselves as such. But couching public policy debate in terms defined by myths obscures important, rigorously definable utilitarian issues that face humanity as technology advances. Meanwhile, those content to hurl brimstone at the prospect of human cloning, in particular, should realize that they risk soon stigmatizing real people. As in the case of so-called illegitimate children (and there are synonyms with yet harsher connotations) for centuries, such stigma may affront individual dignity far more than may any particular means of birth. So welcome to the world, Eve — when/where/whoever you are. May you grow old in joy, well-loved, with respect for your uniqueness and privacy, and unswayed by hokum. And if so, let’s hope there will be more of us like you.
- GCbias: Graham Coop makes genomic complexity, well, fun.
- Genomes Unzipped: Thoughtful reflections on personal genomics by leading lights in the field.
- Haldane’s Sieve: Read about new research here first, and straight from authors.
- I Wish You’d Made Me Angry Earlier: Casey Bergman, voice of genomic reason and memory.
- it is NOT junk: Trenchancy from Michael Eisen. Read this.
- MassGenomics: Worthwhile thoughts from Dan Koboldt
- Next Generation Technologist: Dale Yuzuki opines on deep-sequencing methods and insights
- Omics! Omics! Plumb Keith Robison’s knowhow on methods and tools for understanding genomes.
- Phenomena: Lively summaries of eclectic new research from Ed Yong, Carl Zimmer, and others. (And where else would Genomena take you, after all?…)
- Phylogenomics: Jonathan Eisen surfs the sea of sequence
- Razib Khan’s feed: Savvy (often bitingly so) genomic insights into human ancestry and behavior.
- Why evolution is true: Sageness from the broad and incisive mind of Jerry Coyne.