An NPR headline claims “Combining The DNA Of Three People Raises Ethical Questions.” I was all sorts of excited, cuz I like arguing, and I wanted to jump in on this. I’m already on the record as pro-eugenics (in the sane sense), this could be fun. Then I found out the headline is click-bait bullshit. It gives the impression that the DNA of 3 people is being combined into the human genome of a single new person. Instead, it’s just a mitochondrial transplant.
Any science writer worth their salt would already know these are vastly different things, and most people seeing the headline will assume, as I did, that it’s referring to modification of the base human DNA. This leads me to believe that it’s intentionally misleading in order to drive shock/outrage and draw clicks. This is shameful, I expect better from NPR.
Also, a friend pointed out that the illustration is nothing like how knitting works, so there’s that too!
Seriously though… there’s “ethical questions” being raised over mitochondria transplants? Seriously? This is the equivalent of a heart transplant. Anyone getting outraged over this is either a lunatic, or someone who makes a living generating outrage. Lame.
Thing the second: Science fiction author Benjanun Sriduangkaew is found to secretly be the same person as a blogger called RequiresHate who uses social justice rhetoric and out-of-context quotes to rile up mobs, send them to harass and threaten competing writers, and damage their careers.
The linked full write-up by Laura J Mixon is… very long. It lists the names of authors Sriduangkaew targeted, including ones I like quite a bit, such as Bacigalupi, Jemisin, Sullivan, and Rothfuss.
And it contains such jems as “she is … stalking, threatening, and harassing” and “She has issued extremely explicit death, rape, and maiming threats”
Lovely. >:( On the plus side, the SFF community is rather loudly making all this known, and it seems like this sort of cancer will have a harder time getting a foothold in the future. Hooray for my in-group! They are a just and righteous people, shining light into their own dark places!