Thursday, May 5, 2016

Chimeras, Werewolves, and Pigmen Oh My! Science Stranger than Fiction.

The Chimera from Greek mythology.

Who knew that Chimera’s were real?  For those of us who remember bits and pieces of Greek mythology, or who play lots of role playing video games, a Chimera was a monstrous hybrid creature often depicted as part lion, part goat, and part snake.  In today’s world however Chimeras are very real and in this writer’s humble opinion, very disturbing.  The word Chimera today refers most often to animals that are gene spliced with other animals creating a kind of hybrid species.  As if this attempt at playing God isn’t alarming enough, human cells are being added to pigs, sheep, goats, mice, and other animals that could potentially blur the lines between the species. 

Despite a ban put in place on such research by America’s top health agency the National Institute of Health (NIH), researchers in the United States are plowing ahead trying to grow human hearts, lungs, kidneys and other organs inside goats and pigs for transplant patients.  The NIH initiated the ban and ceased funding such research due to the potential to alter the brain activity of animals that have human brain cells introduced into their cellular makeup.  In short, what happens when we create extremely intelligent animals?  On the forefront of this research, Hiromitsu Nakauchi, a stem-cell biologist at Stanford University says that it is highly unlikely that we will create super intelligent animals if we are only using small amounts of human cells.  “If the extent of human cells is 0.5 percent, it’s very unlikely to get thinking pigs or standing sheep,” he says. “But if it’s large, like 40 percent, then we’d have to do something about that.”  This quote is very alarming.  Knowing human nature’s ability at self control, what is to prevent a scientist at the behest of his or her country from crossing such thresholds and creating animals that can reason with the abilities of men?  It should not go unnoticed that in studies mice-human chimeras have shown marked increases in cognitive abilities.  An army of super strong human-animal hybrids would certainly make wonderful soldiers for any country with the means to wield such a research program.

Enter the Super-ist of all super powers, the United States of America.  Nakuachi was a highly acclaimed scientist in Japan, but when Japanese regulators restricted his research for fear of creating a “pig man,” he brought his studies to the United States where Chimera research is much less regulated.  In fact, not only has the United States allowed Nakuachi to continue to play mad scientist while at Stanford, the US Army has awarded his peer Dr. Daniel Gary from the University of Minnesota a $1.4 million grant to allegedly grow human hearts in pigs.  While the research taken at face value is disturbing, researchers justify it as being for the greater good in order to create a supply of human organs for the 125,000 people on organ wait lists. With that being said, the potential for abuse is terrifying.  In a day and age where science fiction of yesterday is becoming non-fiction of today, werewolves, goat-men, and the things that go bump in the night may be coming to a world near you sooner rather than later.  Scientist in the United States and one must assume abroad as well are beginning to play God more and more with the ramifications yet to be determined.  


Friday, April 22, 2016

Laissez-Faire Christianity Dooming the United States

Laissez-Faire is a French term meaning in its simplest translation "do nothing."  It is often used to describe governments who wish to "let things play out" before taking action.  Today, it is a very applicable description of the vast majority of people who call themselves Christians in the United States.  The fact that I have included our beautiful country is notable here.  Christians in some other countries are putting their lives on the line everyday at great peril to their lives and the lives of their families.  So I cannot lump all Christians together as a result.  To be fair, there are certainly Christians in the United States that are doing great work here and abroad.  But, I am talking about the majority of Christians who go to churches on Sunday morning, rarely crack their Bibles through the week, say prayers before eating and occasionally before bed and only fervently seek God out when there is a major crisis in their lives.  Sadly, I would fall into this category as well.  I am certainly not writing this article in order to appear “holier than thou.”  In fact, I could be the band-leader for such "do nothing" Christians.  I am also not writing this article to debate denominations.  Whether you are Catholic, Baptist, Presbyterian, or whatever is in my opinion merely a nametag that will either fall off in Heaven or burn off in Hell.  If you are reading this article hoping to find links to other articles or to a great wellspring of statistics and numbers then sadly, you are reading the wrong article.  As a numbers guy, there will be plenty of those factually stuffed articles at a later date.  In stead, I am penning this as much as a self-motivation article as a news article.  Hopefully, by reading it and walking down these dark halls of self-examination we will together rekindle the spirit of activism that the Bible calls for Christians to have.

Ok, first of all let’s establish a baseline.  In Matthew 28:18-20 the Bible clearly statesthat we are to be activists as Christians.  In fact, the Bible calls for us to “GO” make disciples.  It is difficult to “GO” when only sitting in a church pew.  It also calls for us to “TEACH” others the laws that God gave us to obey.  Both of these are activists ideas that by their very nature require action.  Unfortunately, we not only are not “GOING” and not “TEACHING” we are sitting idly by as the societal culture of the United States is overrun by political correctness and fear.  It is a dire and disturbing contrast to what Islamist terrorist are doing for their religious beliefs.  Islamist extremists are committing suicide to “further the cause” of their religion – albeit misguidedly so.  In the United States we seem to think we should get a gold star and a cookie for merely going to church once or twice a week.  We have sat idly by and watched as the traditional idea of marriage has been expanded to allow for same sex marriage clearly against scriptural text.  We have allowed the media to promulgate the notion that the reason Muslim terrorist hate the United States is because we have wronged the middle east.  In reality, the hatred is largely because the United States is still considered the most recognizable "Christian nation" in the world.   Now we are sitting by and allowing a debate over whether or not transgendered people should be able to go into a bathroom of the sexual orientation with which they associate.  Seriously?  How has this even become a debate?  How far have we strayed from the values, morals, and beliefs of our grandparents? 

I still believe that the majority of Christians in the United States have a good core value system.  I do not believe however that we LOVE God enough.  Nor do I believe we are nearly as active as we should be.  It is my opinion that our pastors and spiritual leaders are not showing enough intestinal fortitude to stand up for what the Bible says is right and wrong. 

I believe in second chances.  As I pen this, I know I need one for about the 77nd time (or more).  I believe in loving the person and hating the sin.  I believe in turning the other cheek.  I also believe that God wants us to stand up for what is right.  And sadly I see far too few Christians standing for anything these days.  I am ready for someone to start a movement to Stand Up For America.  I am ready for someone to stand up and fight for values and morals that this country was founded on.  I am calling for us to unify white, black, Asian, Hispanic, etc as Christians and stand up against the government or any powers that be that attempt to hold us down as Christians and belittle our faith.  We cannot "TEACH" the laws if we meekly acquiesce to new laws that run counter to THE LAW.  Will anyone stand with me?  Will anyone Stand Up for America?  For God? Or will we continue to decline as a society, as a nation, as a people....

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Target is Off the Mark with It's Latest Decision

 Target is Off the Mark with It's Latest Decision

Target has decided to allow its customers to use the toilet facility of the gender that they "associate with."  So the next time you send your daughter into the bathroom by herself, she may very well be in a stall beside a herself....without you.  Take that in for a second.  Or do you even care?  In just another step that baffles common sense, Target along with several state legislatures are informing Americans that we have had our "potty privileges" wrong all these years.  Clearly we were backwards in thinking that women should go to bathrooms emblazoned with "WOMEN" signs and men should likewise go to their corresponding bathroom.  I am not real sure when our parents told us that we could grow up to be anything we wanted to be, they were envisioning sex changes and cross-dressers.

Apparently, Target has a lot of transgendered customers that were offended by having to use the toilet that matches their God-given genitalia - so much so that Target decided to announce this new policy decision at what I can only imagine will be the offense of a much greater majority of people who think this is a bad idea.  One might as well put a neon "Welcome" sign out for rapist and pedophiles.  By this policy all one would have to do is suddenly "associate" with the female sex and he may come on down to Target and walk in to the bathroom with our daughters and wives.  Target and proponents of such policies state that transgendered people do not attack people in bathrooms.  Even if we take this as 100 % fact, what is to prevent pedophiles and rapist from using this new policy as a veritable toilet Trojan Horse in order to go into a bathroom in the guise of a transgender?  In what world does this seem like a good idea?  In my world I am pretty sure it used to be something that was only done by accident and great embarrassment or illegally.
Target is very proud of its policy decision.  It lauds itself for making everyone feel included and welcome.  Strangely enough however, it was not very welcoming to the Salvation Army.  Their bell-ringers are not allowed on Target property during the Christmas season.  After all, it is a Christian organization.  To me this is just another instance where Target is off the mark with its clientele.  They are falling over backwards to cater to the minority at the detriment to the majority.  The question is, honestly, does anyone of us have the intestinal fortitude to stand up and try to make a statement that this is not ok.  Sadly, most of us will read these type of articles and then go right back to shopping at Target without a thought until someone's daughter or wife is raped.  So if you are one of the many - happy shopping.  If you are as offended by this as I am....

I have seen numerous small grass-root efforts calling for the boycott of Target.  But honestly, do these ever work by themselves?  I would rather encourage stock holders to sell their stock.  I would encourage investors to think long and hard before buying Target stock.  I would also encourage pickets and protests at Target stores, probably with pamphlets explaining the reason behind your protests.  I  may be totally wrong about America, but I believe most Americans would have a negative view of this, but most Americans are willfully blind to this.  I would encourage letters to the editor of every small town or large town newspaper that has a Target store within 50 miles.  Join with me America in Standing Up For America Today (SUFAToday) or just continue on as if nothing is happening.