Thursday, September 4, 2008


I hope that you found something in Wednesday's lecture to make you think a little. How far can we infringe on human rights if the ends justify the means? (and who decides?)

Are there species that we should deliberately drive to extinction?

Before you say no, try reading Olivia Judson's controversial article in the New York Times entitled 'A bug's Death: Should we send the malaria mosquito the way of the dodo?' . In this article she advocates the extinction, or "specicide", of thirty mosquito species through the introduction of recessive knockout genes".

Would this be the first step on a very slippery slope (a lot of people hate snakes, many people dislike spiders etc. etc.) or would the ends justify the means - eliminating the mosquitoes that vector malaria would save at least one million human lives every year?

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