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Coolest. Shit. Ever.


Science is so damn cool. Every now and then I feel guilty for going into art, rather than something as noble as the sciences.

But then I remember my high school science classes and realize that if I'm gonna make a significant contribution to any field, it ain't gonna be science. So it worked out.

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That's really damn cool, thanks for the link.

That is way cool, but I feel bad for the poor mice they paralyze to test it. : (

If animal testing is being carried out in order to better the quality of human life, I don't mind. I know that if I, or any of my loved ones, suffered from a serious spinal injury and this research could help solve the problem, I wouldn't be adverse to snuffing many, many mice. Mice are a dime a thousand; they breed CONSTANTLY. It is not as though they are practicing on pandas or some other such loveable, highly endangered creature.

Now, if they were doing something wretched like filling the mice's eyes full of drain opener or something to test how it would effect humans, THEN I have an issue. Or pouring rabbits full of shampoo. I say if you are stupid enough to put drain opener in your eyes, then you probably deserve to be blind. I say just put a cautionary label on EVERYTHING, regardless of whether or not you know if it will melt your eyeballs. If it won't, well, great! At least whoever bought it won't waste perfectly good whatever-it-is by drinking it, if it already has a warning on it.

Question for you: If you had a child, and they suffered from a crippling spinal injury, and paralyzing mice was the way to find the cure so your child could run and swim and lead a healthy, fulfilling life like the other kids, would you still be against it?

I honestly don't know the particulars of medical testing on animals in cases like this. I would say that if it didn't hurt or torture the mice (or any any other animal), then I wouldn't be against it. Seeing as they're severing their spinal cords (I hope while they're asleep), they probably don't feel pain (or anything else for that matter) from where they've been severed on down.

However, if myself, or my child were injured like that, then I'd be happy to volunteer myself or my child in whatever experimental treatment or testing. What are they gonna do, make us more paralyzed? But even if that were true, then I would also suggest things like more stem cell research, but now we're getting into a political/religious area that's a whole 'nuther argument.

You would let your child be put through possibly dangerous, even fatally dangerous experiments?

Don't be ridiculous. Obviously not fatal or harmful. I don't like the implications. But if the worst that would happen is they still can't walk or feel anything, then I don't see the harm.

Here's a bit of table turning for you. You say that it would be different if it were other animals, such as pandas or endangered species. Obviously, we shouldn't be messing with endangered species (other than to help), but I get the impression that killing hundreds of mice is ok, but not other animals. What if they were hundreds of dogs or cats? How about ferrets or bunnies? Would you sacrifice your pet? Mice make wonderful pets, too. They all have their unique personalities, just like us. Just like our pets.

I don't know about you, but my pets ARE members of my family, just like my child would be. Makes things a bit difficult at that point, wouldn't you say?

Well, look at it this way...

...the use of experimental animals, in this case, may help people out of wheelchairs and iron lungs (OK, off respirators, same thing).

Those people certainly have parents. Those people may have brothers and sisters and children.

So your opposition to the use of lab animals says to someone: "I choose mice/cats/dogs over your child's/parent's/sibling's health and wholeness."

Now--how d'you think that'll play in Peoria?

Re: Well, look at it this way...

First off, people are putting words in my mouth that I never said. What I did say was it was too bad we had to kill or maim animals to get any of these results. I never said I was against it per se. I never said we shouldn't. I said it was too bad.

For some reason, someone took that as I'd push my kid in front of a Mac truck before I'd kill a mouse.

Second, later, what I was trying to point out is that my pets are part of my family and I would put myself in harms way before I saw them get hurt. I was also trying to point out that all the mice we're maiming have their own little personalities just like we do. Yes, there are thousands and thousands of them, but same goes for people.

I find it callous and hypocritical of those accusing me that I would kill or hurt my children or family when they turn around and find nothing wrong with slaughtering thousands of animals themselves. So long as it wasn't your pet or your child, it's ok, right? They're not your mice, so who cares? I'm just trying to make you think here. I'm not necessarily saying it's wrong. Just that you realize the weight and gravity of your statements.

Still, I am not fighting a crusade to end animal medical testing. I find it to be a sad and distasteful, but also an unfortunate necessity. What I do find offensive is being accused of insane notions that I would sacrifice my children or family for them. That's an inflammatory and misleading statement, and not at all related to my original post.

One of the purposes of animal testing is to determine whether a given product or technique is, in fact, potentially life-threatening before it reaches the point of human trials. A living body is a complex system, and I'd rather have a preliminary indication of how it's likely to react to something before volunteering as a tester.

Just my two cents,

OK, gotcha. Good deal ^_^

The thing is, some animals have qualities similar enough to humans that testing on them could help us more. I think it is pigs that have hearts like out=rs? So go ahead and test n the pigs. If bunnies have the same liver, test on them.

It's like . . . I eat cows, right? I eat chickens, and pigs, and lamb on occassion, and fish. I have eaten alot of dead animals. I COULD have eaten vegetables or soy or tofu or whatnot. However, I only eat free-range animals that haven't been brought up in horrible conditions and injected full of hormones. And as long as the animals they use for experiments aren't cruelly treated, are dealt with as painlessly as possib;le and with care for the animal, then go ahad. I mean, it is too bad if they have to hurt them, but the sooner they find the cure for whatever they are researching, the less animals have to be hurt.

I would no sooner submit my own pets for testing than I would my child. But I don't have attachments to species as a whole. I have had mice and rats as pets (preferred the rats!), and I wouldn't give them to science! But in other countries, cats are seen as food items, along with dogs, owls, ferrets, and all manner of things. I think it is silly when someone gets all up in arms about a species because it is seen as a pet here, or something not to be eaten. Pandas, on the other hand, are endangered and need to be protected.

Sorry, I am kinda rambling on. I am sorry if I offended you at all.

Apology accepted. : )

I pretty much agree with nearly everything you said, so no worries. I ascribe to the "comfortable life, swift death" policy myself. I eat meat and eggs, but I agree that the animals should be treated well before they're used or killed. Free range and as painless a death as possible - cause isn't that what we all want anyway? : )

No, no...

...I wanna see Christopher Reeve sucking stem-cells directly from the spinal columns of dead fetuses, just like on South Park!.

--An Inspiration To Us All

Yeah, I love nature.com. Makes me wish I had the money to splurg on actually getting the magazine.

Your friendly science department (pick any) ought to have a copy... :)

Failing that, some (a lot) universities have site-subscriptions, so you can go read stuff online.

As a scientist, let me tell you: you're as likely to spend your life chasing after some goal that you never reach, as you are to find the cure for cancer. That research is probably the culmination of many years of work for many people, and how many people will it ultimately benefit? Whereas your art benefits everyone who looks at it (barring the "I despise the arrogant wombat" crowd of course).

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