Re: SOC: Canadian poll on biotech issues

From: Damien Broderick (
Date: Sun Jan 09 2000 - 15:43:08 MST

At 07:10 PM 8/01/00 EST, Greg wrote:
>This article is particularly ominous, since it seems to clearly link
>public perceptions of medical biotech with the "frankenfoods" issues.

>>From The Ottawa Citizen Online,

This is interesting, but I think it needs to be interpreted differently
from the way we'd read a poll on, I dunno, whether people would like it to
be nice weather for the holidays. In effect, pollsters are forcing people
who know *nothing* substantive about X to declare for or against it. What
else can they do but draw upon comic-strip hunches? Once X is a reality,
things will change. Ask a bunch of 19th century citizens if they'd fancy
flying a few miles high at many hundreds of miles an hour. I doubt they'd
endorse it. Scary! Wicked! Unnatural!

We all get old and sick, sooner or later. We end up in hospital. We scream
for doctors to use the best available treatments. White racists gulp and
accept a black kid's transplanted heart (or so I gather). Bit by bit, we'll
see the polls change as the topic shifts from `sci fi' schlock to
yawn-been-there-done-that quotidian.

Let's hope.

And of course this goes the other way when the first gengineered apples
start an immune-compromising plaque that wipes out a third of the apple
eaters... (Can't happen! Will never happen! Scientists know what they're
doing! Corporations are too fearful of litigation! Yeah.)

Damien Broderick

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