The Finch Formerly Known As Gold

13 May 2004

"They say I'm a killer"

Live from New York: Dawn Eden meets Dr James D. Watson, and apparently the good doctor has gotten himself snared in a whole new helix. In answer to a question no one asked, he said:

Everyone's doing research in genetics and nobody's doing service. Because it's too controversial to help mothers so that they can give birth to healthy babies.

What's with this outburst? Totally unbidden, sneering all the way — and anyway he thinks those mothers should abort those babies who aren't healthy.

Dr Watson has never been exactly secretive about his views, but there's a difference between merely reading about them and hearing them expressed at high volume on the other side of the room.

Dawn's reaction:

There was no way that I could argue with him — it wasn't the time or place, and I don't believe I could have swayed him. But I'm sure he could see the emotions on my face — the desire to be respectful, mingled with stifled horror and pity.

I could only wonder what would make someone whose work had brought so much healing decide that the best way to prevent sickness is to kill people.

For some reason, I find myself thinking of Ike Turner, unquestionably one of the major architects of rock and roll, and by all accounts someone you definitely didn't want to date.

If there's a Deep Truth here, it's this: doing good things, even great things, doesn't assure you a position on the side of the angels.

Posted at 7:35 AM to Life and/or Death

TrackBack: 12:15 AM, 14 May 2004
» Mr DNA (he's an altruistic pervert) from
Dawn Eden relates a jaw-dropping encounter with Dr. James Watson, co-discoverer of the structure of the DNA molecule. I was introduced to the gaunt, aged legend by another scientist, who proceeded to tell Watson about his biomedicals company, which fun......[read more]

Woo! Yeah, kill all the imperfect babies! Woo! Woo! Hey, maybe you could sort them out, too. Gotta have people to do work. Let's call the smartest and bestest ones Alphas, too.

Terkish Payne, ain't no cure for the soma-time blues..

Posted by: Terkish Payne at 3:47 PM on 13 May 2004

Reminds me of another crazy Watson quote on genetic engineering: "People say it would be terrible if we made all girls pretty. I say it would be great."

Posted by: sya at 6:58 PM on 13 May 2004

Hmmm. I think it would be great if all girls were pretty, in different ways, of course.
On topic, Dennis Prager has often said that there is absolutely no correlation between artistic talent and personal morality.

Posted by: Daniel Day at 6:45 PM on 14 May 2004