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back to article Men could have kids with chimpanzees - gov must act

A leading Scottish churchman and bioethics thinktank operator has warned again of the dangers attendant on genetic research, and recommended that there should be a law against men having children with female chimpanzees. The Scotsman reports today that Calum MacKellar, an Elder of the Church of Scotland who trained as a …

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Alert

Uh...

... who would a female chimp anyway?

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Joke

What about...

What about the Humeep reseach that is going on in fields all over Wales...? It's not chimps that need protecting right now....

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Anonymous Coward

damn!

thats why I'm so hairy

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In the words of Bart Simpson

I want my monkey-man!

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Silver badge

Old news

Where I used to live, I'd swear 50% of the residents were the results of such breeding....

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Joke

Monkeying about

Is this here Calum MacKellar a Primate of the Church of Scotland then?

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Coat

chimpanzees in scotland ?

Does anyone else think that Scotland is the last place someone is going to **** a chimp. or are the locals in to the rough stuff a bit more than most ?

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Coat

Ook!

I think the gentleman has been reading too much Michael Crichton, Next anyone?

http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/product-description/0007241003/sr=8-1/qid=1209471986/ref=dp_proddesc_0?ie=UTF8&n=266239&s=books&qid=1209471986&sr=8-1

Mine's the one with the fur cuffs!

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Anonymous Coward

"Trained as a biochemist"

Yeah, I failed my biochemistry degree too. But I didn't then retreat into a shell of irrationality and forget what I knew of cell biology and histocompatibility.

I thought about looking at a bio of the guy somewhere, but I really don't want to know that he got an honours degree in biochemistry and is still spouting such arrant bullshit.

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Stop

Waiting for God...

"Christians accept that every person is amazingly loved and valued by an amazing God"

Oh, is that the completely unproven and unprovable god of the Bible? Or the one the Muslims accept? Or the one the Jews accept? Or the ones the Hindus accept? Or one of the other many thousands of gods humanity has created?

Take religion out of politics and we might get on with life.

Seriously, to think that you have to be religious to be a good person really grates at me. I'm an atheist, and I don't go around shagging monkeys.

"all research on human embryos is morally wrong."

Are those morals taken directly from your holy book? Is that the same book that says to kill unruly children and stone adulterers? How about when you find out your new wife isn't a virgin on her wedding night, do you still take her to the doorstep of her father? No. You choose not to have slaves. You choose not to stone adulterers. You choose not to kill unruly children. YOU choose which parts of the Bible to ignore and which to adhere to. If you made these choices, then how can your holy book be used as the basis for your morality when YOU have made the moral decisions yourself? Your reasoning is circular.

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Ted Haggard

He who protest the loudest...

Go on, Calum...admit it. You got wood when you watched those "girls" in skanky outfits on Lancelot Link...

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Unhappy

Another Biggot

"The Church of Scotland said in 2006 that it was opposed to any creation of human embryos 'by IVF methods or nuclear transfer cloning methods'."

So this church is against in vitro fertilization? I believe the book they prescribe their religion to has a passage about 'being fruitful and multiplying'. I'm failing to see here how helping to increase fertility might be construed as wrong.

"In 2000, MacKellar suggested that cloning techniques could be used to produce a child with two fathers and no mother, a technique that was thought likely to appeal to gay men. ... There can't be much doubt that MacKellar would have been hoping to see the male-only kids possibility forbidden. He has written a paper arguing that homosexuality is an affliction which a moral, Christian person does not yield to - just like paedophilia or murderous rage."

Again, I've seen the so called banning of homosexuality by biblical quotation. I did fail to see the addendum that prohibited mixing up two people's genes to make a new person if those two people happen to be the same sex. My understanding of the Catholic's viewpoint, is that a homosexual is in the moral clear so long as he does not commit a sex act. Looks like MacKellar follows that line of thought. How then, is creating a child without commiting a homosexual sex act banned in any way? Mr. MacKellar, there's nothing in any book from a thousand years ago that mentions that sort of thing in any way! In fact, it sounds much like people being fertile and multiplying to me..

Intolerant people such as this would do well to be forced to live without the benefit of the labor of those they would condemn..

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Paris Hilton

Surely its been going on for years...

...the only thing I'd like to know is, how do the offspring all manage to end up in the House of Commons?

Paris - because she wouldn't have a clue what we're talking about.

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Jobs Horns

Already here?

Sounds to me as though the humanzee is already among us, and has risen to high rank in the Church of Scotland.

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Stop

Christians believe...

Well Mr MacKellar certainly isn't shy about trying to tar everyone else with the same brush now is he!

"Christians believe"... "Christians accept"... "This is a crucial Christian belief"

Really! I don't ever remember anyone asking my opinion, and I imagine there are plenty of other Christians out there who feel the same as me.

Mr MacKellar, unless you can provide documentary proof showing the majority of Christians agree with you, please don't try dragging the rest of us down into this!

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Paris Hilton

A little presumptuous, maybe?

"Christians believe that all persons [...] cannot be reduced to ‘piles of cells’"

_Some_ Christians, maybe. MacKellar is taking far too much upon himself to presume he speaks for all Christians. People _are_ piles of cells - cells that have acquired self-awareness, conscience and (in many cases) a need for religion.

If every cell is sacred, MacKellar had better keep track of every skin cell he's sloughed, and each white blood cell he's spilt. If that seems preposterous, don't forget each one carries his nuclear and mitrochondrial DNA, and is capable of providing the means of life.

So is an embryonic bolus. Neither is independently human ... yet.

Paris, for her enthusiastic (but so far unsuccessful) breeding programme.

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Gates Horns

North of the border ...

Surely the fact that this is a worry for "A leading Scottish churchman" tells us something about the Scotch.

No Englishman ever found a "lady chimp" attractive.

P.S. I choose the Bill Gates icon, but the Reg really needs an icon of Steve Ballmer these days. First off, he is the CEO now. And, secondly, who could be more appropriate as an icon for this story than "Monkey Boy"?

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Any link with Brown stance on skunk?

Is this linked to Brown stance on skunk?

It seems to be the perfect proof that you shouldn't watch "Planet of the apes" completely high.... or Karl Marx was even more right than he was thinking and religion is really people's opium (and apparently can get you VERY high).

Now seriously, for someone that supposed to had scientific training (???) there are enough proofs that animals can be self-conscious and/or self-aware (in particular Bonobos, orang-outan and..... chimpanzees). But of course I suspect that our friend believes that God only created man on his image (except of course gays, atheists and women).

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wait

"If it was never able to be self-aware or self-conscious it would probably be considered an animal,"

What? Chimpanzees aren't self-aware? When was Gallup's work disproven?

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Flame

"Christians accept that every person is amazingly loved and valued by an amazing God"?

Isn't it about time that we took people who still believe in fairy storys out of positions of power?

People slate those involved in Waco as wakos, but still believe in the Pope?

No offense to anyone stupid enough to believe in a God, or even worse, to believe in a God yet NOT believe in other peoples relegions, but how is believing in God any different from belevieng in the Ginger Bread man?

Actually, apart from the Ginger Bread man never having been used as a basis of oppresion of women, power of other men and the cause of untold millions of murders.

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Joke

Eccentrics

Careful England, Scotland is out to steal your crown as the acknowledged leader in world class eccentricity.

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Heart

Too much time on Worth 1000 I think.

I think that someone has been spending too much time contemplating the Animal Pin-Ups contest that just finished on the worth1000 website.

http://www.worth1000.com/contest.asp?contest_id=19102&display=photoshop

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Coat

Monkey shagging

'Seriously, to think that you have to be religious to be a good person really grates at me. I'm an atheist, and I don't go around shagging monkeys.'

Whereas I'm incredibly devout and will fuck a snake if someone will hold it straight...

Black latex gimp suit is mine...

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Anonymous Coward

Tell it to the poor citizens of Sodom and Gomorrha

"every person is amazingly loved and valued by an amazing God"

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Black Helicopters

How about this:

Calum MacKellar could have kids, gov must act!

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Anonymous Coward

I've seen some freaky things on the all-knowing interweb

...but i ain't ever heard or seen of any man/chimp loving on the agenda anywhere. Thankfully!

Oh and i can never let this one go: ""Christians accept that every person is amazingly loved and valued by an amazing God""

Oh yeah? Try spending some time on a childrens cancer ward and explain that to them and their families.

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Anonymous Coward

Thought this had already happened?

Dubya.

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Anonymous Coward

@Waiting for God...

>Oh, is that the completely unproven and unprovable god of the Bible?

Likewise, you can't prove he doesn't exist. ;) At the end of the day, if you aren't even open to the idea of God, then you'd deny his existence even if he slapped you in the face.

>Take religion out of politics and we might get on with life.

Don't loose any sleep, it is already out... This was a Christian country, and we've completely turned out back on God - as a result our country has gone to the dogs.

>Seriously, to think that you have to be religious to be a good person really grates at me.

Of course you don't have to be a religious person to be a good person, but without the values and morals of the religion of the country, then that country is nothing. Why is rape, murder etc. so common now compared to decades ago, because people were "more" Christian back then? No, because people respected the Christian values of this country. You take God and Christianity out of the UK and the morals won't be far behind. You're welcome to take the negative, but if we ignore history, then the ultimate test is to see how low the UK has stooped in its morality and standards... ;)

>YOU choose which parts of the Bible to ignore and which to adhere to.

Not really, one is the Old Testament, we live in the New Testament.

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awww.

Damnit - and I'd paid the deposit for my holiday to Borneo and everything !!! That's that out the window then. :(

However, being in Inverness, I feel I have to speak up for (some of) the natives. We're not all that hairy up here ! Especially the ginger ones who for understandable reasons keep it cropped short. Sure, we have our fair share of knuckle draggers or "chimpanchavs" as I will now call them, but I'd wager it's no more than any other city of this latitude.

Perhaps this loving christian fellow is maybe trying to retire on the insanity plea or something ? He gives the rest of the Wee Free virgin-policeman-torching, wicker-man-worshipping churchgoers round these parts a bad name.

Further, it's a sad day indeed when your loving God turns out to have such a cruel sense of humour - surely, he'd be only too delighted to have all his creatures in a big love-in ?

Yours, homo-erectus-ly etc etc

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Monkey Gone to Heaven

I wonder what percentage of your DNA needs to be human to get into heaven.

Dr MacKellar won't be going there, he's 100% donkey.

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Jobs Horns

Which ones?

@Anonymous Coward

"Isn't it about time that we took people who still believe in fairy storys [sic] out of positions of power?"

Which "fairy stories" were you thinking of? Marxism? Socialism? Liberalism? Utilitarianism? Freudianism? Jungianism, Feminism? Multiculturalism? ... and so on and so forth.

Or was it just the Church of Scotland you had in mind? If so, why?

Not that this man isn't an ass by why are you singling out his ideology rather than anyone else's?

Who gets to say what is a "fairy story" and what isn't? It wouldn't be you who gets to say, by any chance, Anonymous Coward, would it?

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Kinky Christians

Had anybody seriously thought about sexing up a chimp before the Christians decided to warn us about it?

I mean come on, I went to the zoo and it never occurred to me that I could climb into the cage and indulge in some human on hairy beast action. Yet for Christians the zoo is a place of allure and temptation. The very fact that it is /possible/ to screw a chimpanzee means that Christians must be legally restrained from doing so. And not only Christians - normal sane people like you and me too!

What makes them think this stuff up? How does a minister swing a sermon from

"For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son" to "Oh, and don't make sexytime with chimps, just in case you were thinking about that".

Do we really need a law to govern *every* possible human behaviour? And should we be entrusting our freedom to a group of people who don't believe in dinosaurs.

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Linux

No, really?

He felt that even this would "begin to undermine the whole distinction between humans and animals".

Did he ever think that maybe that's because the whole distinction is artificial to begin with?

Penguin, because they're people too...

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xjy

Mobilize the foamers!

Surely Dr Scum here could mobilize all the flog 'em and hang 'em Readers of the Reg if he only hinted that female humanzees would be used as child-surrogate sex-slaves and male humanzees would go around raping little girls. Or maybe we could just eat 'em. I mean, would Veggies complain about non-natural protein sources like these? Is it really meat, or something else?

Oh, Brave New World, that has such unpeople in it!

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Stop

Calm down, dear, it's only a comment.

Look, he may have tarted up his statement with sci-fi gibberish, but he did raise a valid point.

""The Human Fertilisation and Embryo Bill prohibits the placement of animal sperm into a woman The reverse is not prohibited. It's not even mentioned. This should not be the case.""

He is quite right to point out that the legislation is not internally consistent. Any legislation dealing with either "chimera" soma-cell transfer or true hydridisation should be rigorously complete.

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Re: Chimpanzees in scotland?

The ones there are would be well advised to stay out of sight for fear of being mistaken for a Frenchman and consequently finding themselves hung. On the bright side they do get tried first.

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Pirate

Well...........

I must admit the man does have a point, that if animal sperm-> woman is totally illegal, but man sperm-> animal is not, then as sure as eggs is eggs some mad sod will try it.

There are many examples of scientists attempting to, or managing to cross two closely-related but separate species (e.g. horse & zebra, Tiger & Lion etc.,) for little more reason than idle curiosity.

True, such hybrids are generally infertile, but we have seen quite a few examples of dotty scientists messing around with what they don't fully understand...

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God's Grace

He is probably been reading Bernard Malamuds 'God's Grace' rather than Crichton. The hero is the sole survivor of nuclear war, a scientist with a talking female chimpanzee who he soon seduces to repopulate the earth. His only other conversations are with Yahweh, who doesn't seem to mind the monkey business.

It makes more sense for women to be impregnated by the chimps, as their womb would be more suitable than a chimps to carry it to term.

The Soviets supposedly experimented with this 90 years ago, in the hope of creating an army of stupid yet strong workers, whereas we rely on our schools to achieve that.

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/stalins-space-monkeys-808978.html

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Coat

Other breeds as well?

Does he plan on forbidding liasons with other species as well? "There'll never be another Ewe". I'm sorry, I couldn't get that one out of my mind, especially thinking about Scotland.

OK, I'll get my coat. It's the asbestos one with the Kevlar lining.

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Ignoring the fact he's a nut job...

he does have a point. Of sorts...

How the hell did we end up with a law that bans animals humping women but not men humping animals...?

My money is on the interwebs having more animal-on-woman action than man-on-animal action... :)

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Paris Hilton

Well that can only

Improve the average human intelligence and diminish the average chimpanzees' intelligence

see icon for proof :-p

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Anonymous Coward

muppet

The muppet said:

"If it was never able to be self-aware or self-conscious it would probably be considered an animal,"

He really does not know much about primates. Primates are aware of what they are doing, have complex social behaviours, are able to interpret (and act on) the behaviour and emotions expressed by their peers.

Animals are not different from us - other than we have, as far as we know, a better developed language / communication system than other animal species and we have a higher brain / body size ratio than other animals so are possibly "cleverer".

Anyway, surely as a religious bod he should believe that God magically makes us human in some process outside of biology and thus a "humanzee" (currently implausable given the difference in chromosone number but that's by the by) would still, to a religious person, not have human qualities.

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Dead Vulture

Anyone...

Who goes out drinking in the Cradley area will know this may already have happened.

Dead Vulture pic? Thats one unattractive bird!

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Ah But...

The Goddess loves chimpanzees too....

Blessed Be ...

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Happy

This is a "Daily Mail" headline......

If he was more familiar with the research on hybrid organ breeding , he'd know the test subject would more likely be porcine, and isolated in a lab environment.

He should be more worried about it ending up in the food chain

http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2008/apr/21/genetics.gmcrops

hence the current requirement for medically modified ( for medicine as opposed to improving strain ) animals to be soaked in creosote or similar directly after on-site slaughter to prevent some entrepreneur hawking out the carcass to the local butchers (again) .

The heepanzees could probably have a good career at PC World.

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Disestablishment - NOW

Why are we allowing these professional religionists space to spout their weird fears? If we listened to the lot of them, we'd have no blood transfusions, innoculations and all the other things the Church and churches have railed against over time.

Given the current situation with the head religionist of Wales (I suspect we'll be asked to 'judge not lest ye be judged') scr*wing around, best that the Church looks to sort out the beam in its own eye before it froths at the mouth over an imaginary mote in science's.

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religious bigot

"Christians accept that every person is amazingly loved and valued by an amazing God"

... except gay people obviously.

I hate the way (mostly) christians spout that god loves everyone then castigate homosexuals. At least Islam is up front and says God hates everyone except good non-gay muslims.

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Spank the Monkey

As anyone with an understanding of Scots history will know, all the female chimps were Cleared from the Highlands by that b@stard General Wade in the early 18th Century. Like all those forcibly expatriated, some ended up in Oz (hence Murdoch and John Howard). Others ended up the US, hence Dubya and Robin Williams (anyone that hairy must be related to chimps!).

The aforementioned Elder is purely trying to ensure that additional mistakes don’t happen again.

M

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@god bothering AC

"You take God and Christianity out of the UK and the morals won't be far behind."

So that would be the same sort of Christian morals that help run the slave trade? By the way, Christianity was brought to this country by force and that included murdering the native pagans.

See I'm quite happy to let you have your religious beliefs if you accept I can have mine, but as soon as you start ramming yours down my throat I'll ram my fist down yours. Do you really believe the earth was created in six days?

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