Thursday, April 12, 2007

Around the Web in 80 Minutes

There are times I wish I stayed a little more out of touch with current stories. Headliners of the day today bring that feeling into sharper focus. For example, Don Imus. Never once heard the man; never intended to. He smacks of being the kind of firebrand that brings absolutely nothing original to the table by way of thought process or philosophy. Yet he's a (former) national personality who managed in a (not, apparently, isolated) moment of stupidity to bring his career crashing down around his ears.

Then, of course, there's the Duke story. Three members of the Lacrosse team for Duke University have a wild night with an exotic dancer, who then apparently fabricates a rape story. Later this same woman is found to have some history of mental problems, and has been in and out of trouble with the law for several years. The zealot who tried to string the Duke players up by their unmentionables both in court and in the media has himself been forced to issue an apology over his handling of the case. You can bet there will be reprisals in the form of large amounts of money and civil suits.

It almost goes without saying that both of these stories have a common thread: Al Sharpton. Back in the days of the wild west (or modern Los Angeles; take your pick) the phrase was "shoot first and ask questions later." Sharpton and his thuggish band of activists have modernized that phrase to read "march, protest, and destroy reputations first and ask questions after we die." I say that because you can bet that the MSM will never get Sharpton, Jesse Jackson, or any other race-card-playing bigot to admit they were wrong when they forced an entire town to castigate these young men. I'm sure some lunatics on the left still crow about how, even though they didn't actually do anything of which they were accused, they sure would have eventually. Probably meant to, and just didn't get around to it.

Finally there's this bit of human mockery. This is a clear case of science doing something merely because they can, and not because there's any sort of life-saving benefit in doing it. Allowing women to reproduce in an essentially asexual manner is not - repeat: NOT - going to be the tremendous shot in the arm that some lesbians may hope it will be. Our only saving grace so far is that a) it's still a theory; not a proven process, and b) they need stem cells that are limited in supply and that other scientists are not going to want to share right now. So, this "breakthrough" will likely have to wait for another day. The bit I found most amusing was the statement that they needed to get "ethical" approval to proceed. This is like saying that Santa Claus needs greed before he can deliver toys. Come on... who, exactly, determines whether a procedure of this nature is "ethical?" Other scientists? Some dysfunctional United Nations committee? (UPDATE: Apparently there's an "ethics committee," presumably attached to the university where these scientists do their research. Who knew? Still, this is a little like asking Torquemada is there's any objection to putting another heretic on the rack. Académia and social ethics? Oil and water.)

I'm sorry if I sound cynical this afternoon. I don't usually like to be this gloomy. News days like this just bring it out, I suppose, and I use this blog as a form of therapy. Having said what I've said, I probably won't feel a need to revisit any of these stories for months to come.

And that's probably a good thing.

No comments: