New research from Brazil is pushing the boundaries on human fertility. I know this is a major issue for infertile couples – but surely there are boundaries to scientific research – or at least there should be.
“Our data indicate that the mouse can yield human sperm cells,” said Irina Kerkis of the Roger Abdelmassih clinic and research centre in Sao Paolo, Brazil.
This advance – like many others – comes at a cost. What do you do with the family tree following the application of this research? Is it a reverse Stuart Little? Only with the mouse not actually talking? Do you keep, and pamper the mouse for as long as you both shall live in recognition of its unique place in the family structure? I don’t know – and they seem like stupid questions to be asking, on the back of some pretty stupid research.
My problem with science – and its approach to tackling undoubtably serious issues like curing diseases, healing the sick and helping the barren conceive – is that it tries to fight of the inevitable and creates false hopes, and false securities. Nature is by its very nature natural. There is a place for the natural order of things, as a Christian I see this place as coming under God’s authority – and that forms the basis of some of my objections. Stem cell research falls in the same moral boat – it’s great for those who want to preserve life (arguably at the expense of others) but this is fundamentally selfish. Why do we seek to preserve life? If overpopulation is a pressing concern – and it seems to be one for the sustainability lobby sector – shouldn’t we subscribe to the James Bond theory of “live and let die.” Seeking to prolong life by whatever means necessary ultimately cheapens life and is a real life example of the drowning man clutching at straws.