Monday, November 28, 2005

Fighting panda extinction

Science is apparently--possibly--reversing the decline of the evolutionary dead-end known as the panda.
CHENGDU, China - Chinese scientists have logged a record number of giant panda births in captivity this year through improved artificial insemination techniques and better understanding of how the reclusive but universally appealing creature lives and mates.

I wouldn't say the panda is "universally appealing", but apparently Edward Cody of The Washington Post would.

The result of hard science by no-nonsense researchers, the increased birthrate is good news for the many children and soft-hearted adults around the world who delight in the sight of pandas, with their distinctive black and white fur, sitting back and tranquilly munching on bamboo leaves.

So, following the logic of the article, you are a hard-hearted adult if you don't delight in watching pandas eat leaves.

Edward Cody, bite me.

I care immensely for my fellow human beings (friends and family in particular), but I take no particular delight in the panda, and I really don't care if the species actually goes extinct. Call me hard-hearted if you will, but I would like to see more "no-nonsense" research focused on the advancement of the human race. We need cures to very common diseases; we need better ways of using natural resources; we need further exploration of the depths of the ocean and the far reaches of the universe; and we need these more than we need the panda.

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