Where’s the Line?

Last week in my post about genetic privacy I asked if technology was moving too fast and if we needed new guidelines to help us cope with this new world. This week my question to you is this. Is society better off if we allow science to progress with minimal restrictions?

I read in a recent article on the Huffingtonpost about naloxone and how this anti-opiate’s use to treat overdoses has been fought. The critics say it will lead to more drug use and overdoses.

However the larger picture here is that bureaucrats and politicians are deciding what’s right for people. Once again the will of the populous is being ignored so those in power can look good and line their pockets with bribes, I mean campaign contributions, from the pharmaceutical industry.

The old adage goes: there’s no profit in a cure. What does this have to do with science you may be asking yourself?


Imagine if penicillin or the polo vaccine were denied to people on the grounds it would increase a person’s likelihood of engaging in activities that could put them at risk for these diseases.

Like wise imagine getting sick and when your doctor asks how you got that way and he/she didn’t like the answer could refuse to treat you. This is exactly the scenario which the blunt amendment allows for.

Doctors and other workers could refuse to treat patients on moral grounds or deeply held beliefs. What’s more your employer could do the same and opt out of covering things like birth control and treatment for AIDS/HIV.

So the question I again pose to you is this. While me need common sense legislation to address the rapid increase in technology and how we deal with each other, how do we also allow for those advances without stifling them?