Brian Waite, Slate Demuth, Robby Peery
Should Science Have Limits?
Science has become a vastly expanding region that has become palpable in the fiscal markets, national debate, and the nation as an entire entity. With this inquisition, has brought forth much room for dissent among arguing groups around the ethics and morals of science. Should there be limits on discovery and experimentalism? Although many critics disagree with science having widespread and boundless potential, the advancement of stem cells and hacking has been possible. As well as is important to note for regulations to be legislated in order to ensure safety from ethical dilemmas.
Acknowledging the opposition, take for example hacking. When it comes to science within the subfield of hacking, critics argue that “hackers have the tools and the skills to do just the thing, compromising thousands and thousands of credit card numbers and other information”(CNN). This provides a valid counterpoint that shows when the exploration and the diffusion of science do not have proper regulations in place to monitor the actions and provide consequence for people who abuse the capabilities of science. Although many people disagree with science having widespread and boundless potential, with proper regulations it is easy to combat potential threats and criticisms that some have.
As a disclaimer, this next paragraph has the implied sense that there is proper basis of guidelines in order to ensure safety.
As technology and science diffusing across the nation, momentenial steps have been taken in order to “develop drugs that can prevent the diseases from developing in the first place” (“Stem Cell Basics”). In case you are reading this and aren’t precisely sure what a stem cell actually is, a stem cell is “cells with the ability to divide for indefinite periods in culture and to give rise to specialized cells “cells with the ability to divide for indefinite periods in culture and to give rise to specialized cells” ("Eight Reasons to Applaud Action on Stem Cells."). Stem cells have worked with anything from combating burn victims to offering support in working to find treatments and cures from cancer. How this is possible is “due to their unique ability to become essentially any cell in the body, scientists have deemed stem cells to be somewhat of an “internal repair system” (Stem Cell Basics). This is where the science having widespread and boundless potential could provide unique opportunities in order to help people in need. There is much uncertainty concerning stem cells. The effectiveness of them has yet to be protest, but whether or not the risk is worth is the reward is where the ethical dilemmas and government regulations come into play. But based on the positive outcomes of the stem cells thus far, the risk is worth the reward, showing how there should limitless potential as long as proper regulations are in place.
Additional Essays: Brian
March 5th, 2016
Scientific Advancement Essay
Today, one of the most controversial topics in the scientific realm is over stem cells, cells that can differentiate into a handful of cells in the body. Due to their unique ability to become essentially any cell in the body, scientists have deemed stem cells to be somewhat of an “internal repair system” (Stem Cell Basics). Even though these effects of stem cells are something the world has never seen before, this scientific breakthrough has caused for some controversy due to the origin of the cells. Many, not all, stem cells come from human embryo’s, thus causing some unrest among the pro-life community. However, seeing the many benefits of stem cells, as well as the doors it opens for the continuous advancement of the scientific world is definitely worth keeping the scientific world limitless.
Stem cell research is a relatively new topic among the scientific world, but has already proved just how impressive its effects are. So far, the most useful property of stem cells is that they are unspecialized. Since they are unspecialized they have the “ability to self-renew or multiply while maintaining the potential to develop into other types of cells” (What Are Stem Cells?). For example, if someone severely damages one of their muscles, stem cells would be able to come in and help to build up and repair the muscle tissue as specialized muscle cells. This alone shows just how powerful the world of science can be when given an open playing field.
Stem cell research has only been around since the 1980’s and already has made great advancements with many applications still waiting to be discovered. Most recently, scientists have essentially invented a new stem cell. They are known as induced pluripotent stem cells and are adult cells that “have been genetically reprogrammed to an embryonic stem cell-like state” (Stem Cell Basics). This is just one example of the opportunities that stem cell research provides for innovation, with many more still to come. For example, stem cell researchers are currently in the process of using stem cells on a much larger scale. These scientists are nearing closer and closer on how to regenerate large tissues such as organs and bones. With how fast the scientific community is moving, new inventions are bound to rise from the ground just as this one did. The world can’t be worrying about all of the mistakes that might be “given life”, but rather seek to learn from them (Shelley 56).
The major counterpoint to stem cell research is the pro-life argument. People argue that a baby is alive as early as becoming an embryo or even fertilization. However, the embryo’s that are used are EXTREMELY early on in the development stage--within 3-5 days old. These embryo’s consist of only about 150 cells, so destroying an organism that could not sustain life on it’s own, in order to do incredible things with its stem cells, is definitely worth the value that science will gain from it.
In the end, science needs to continue being limitless. The things that humanity is able to accomplish when working without limits is unbelievable. Sure, there will be bumps in the road, but they will be well worth it when it also gives rise to an entire generation of innovations and inventors.
Additional Essays: Robby
March 4th, 2016
Science Argumentative Essay
Hacking has become more and more prominent in today’s society. With such a technological advanced world we live in today, almost everything we do, buy, or communicate with can be tracked with ease. For security purposes, most of the general public is unable to access any of these records. However as technology advances more and more, so does hackers. hackers have more power than they have ever had before, if they get their hands on the right records, they can control a person’s life. Has the power hackers have got out hand? With the power to access a person’s private life, purchases, and history, hackers have too much power in today’s society.
With the internet growing bigger and bigger everyday, more and more people are using it to make purchases on it. The internet has quickly become one of the most prominent sources for shopping in the past decade. Almost every big retailer has opened an online store. So with online shopping, what happens when a company's security is breached? Hackers have the tools and the skills to do just the thing, compromising thousands and thousands of credit card numbers and other information. For example the Target security breach of 2015. More than 70 million people were affected due to the lack of security target put into place. In this breach the hackers, “stole massive amounts of credit and debit card information during the holiday season also swept up addresses and phone numbers.” That’s a massive amount of information, and the hackers didn’t have to leave their field of operation. Target is just a mere example that if an organized hacker group puts in the effort, it is possible they can affect over one sixth of the U,S population. Hackers have the power to retrieve endless information.
Along with purchases, people log their personal information into the internet daily. With social media, it is now easier than ever to find out about who somebody is without even knowing them. However, hackers can dig deeper, find peoples address, email address, even somebody’s family member address. This is called doxing. Doxing is described by Crash Override Network (a task force made up of people who have previously been targeted) describes doxxing as a “tactic of mobs of anonymous online group whose goal is to scare targets by exposing their personal information online”. While your personal information may have nothing to do with them, their objective is to make you fearful about how it could potentially lead to your own victimization, exposing the victim to whatever anybody wants to do with the information. What the hackers do is a security risk to the victim, and they can get blackmailed because of it. Although the target’s are usually celebrities, anybody is vulnerable and can become a victim of doxxing.
As the world becomes more and more technological advanced, hacking is slowly going to become more and more prominent in society. Hacking could become more and more advanced. Hackers are just like scientists, “In other studies you go as far as others have gone before you, and there is nothing more to know; but in a scientific pursuit there is continual food for discovery and wonder. (42)” There is a continual pursuit to cause more and more havoc. Hackers are continuing to receive too much power, and it will only get worse with years to come.
Additional Essays: Slate
03 March 2016
An Ethical Repairment Dilemma
What if there was a way to repair the irreparable? In recent years there has much news surrounding stem cells and people being able to repair body parts that were injured in a traumatic event. Burn victims being able regain function of their arms, or disabled veterans achieve walking again. However, there has been much criticism and dissent encompassing stem cells and the ethical practices behind it. Although many critics feel that stem cells are an unethical and unknown option for possible therapies and treatments, there should be NO limits in the field of stem cells because of how stem cells would allow for lifesaving cures to be developed, drug testing process would be facilitated, and grant scientist the ability into researching genetics and human traits.
A quick synopsis of what a stem cell before I get into my thoughts and feelings on the issue. A stem cell is “cells with the ability to divide for indefinite periods in culture and to give rise to specialized cells” (1). There are two different types of stem cells: embryonic, and adult. Embryonic will mainly be the focus of this essay, so when I say stem cells I am specifically referring to embryonic. Why they are so controversial is the process in which scientists obtain these stem cells. Embryonic stem cells come from unborn fetuses, because the cells within a fetus have yet to begin to differentiate, a key part in why stem cells work to cure diseases, because they have yet to differentiate. There is no question to the vast possibilities of using stem cells, but is the risk worth the reward?
For one, because of how stem cells have the ability to divide this would allow for new possible therapies and treatments to come into light. These new treatments and therapies that would be developed have the potential to save thousands of people that suffer from life threatening diseases. The stereotypes that surround stem cells has somewhat halted research using stem cells within the field of curing cancer. Mr. Obama has recently lifted the ban on federal research on stem cells, and the advances made in the time since then are very palpable. For example, there has been the creation of a tandem transplant. A tandem transplant is basically two high-dose chemo treatments and then stem cells are transplanted within the patient. This treatment alone has worked towards saving many people's lives since the lift of the ban of federal stem cell research. The critics would argue the risk within this process, which there is a large amount of risk involved with treating cancer, and in any life saving procedure. But because of how this treatment has saved thousands of people’s lives, the reward outweighs the reward.
Secondly, drug therapy testing would be facilitated. The scientist can use the stem cells that have differentiated in order to create new treatment options and also be used to learn more about certain diseases that are affecting people now. Take for example a drug’s toxicity level. Scientists can use stem cells that have differentiated into specialized liver cells to test how the toxicity level effects the human, presenting a safer and more efficient alternative to the typical testing methods. As well as scientist have the opportunity to investigate deeper into diseases that are affecting people right now. A lot of time it is difficult “to obtain the cells that are damaged in a disease” therefore stem cells could be engineered to to “contain disease genes, offer a viable alternative” (4). Not only would the stem cells help in the fields of cancer and repairment of the human body, but also with minor diseases that affect people’s everyday lives, like the common cold. Critics may argue how well these processes actually work in order to be able to actually research the disease. However based on the effectiveness and efficiency of using stem cells in order to combat the disease, there would be no need for that worry.
Lastly, and equally as important, scientist could discover more about it truly means to be human. Although vastly researched, there is still much to learn when it comes to the human genome and how we develop our personality traits. The goal of studying to human genome is to tell how each unique combination of genes creates each unique individual. Based on using stem cells, scientists can “develop drugs that can prevent the diseases from developing in the first place” (3). Research should be done in order to find out how the unspecialized embryonic stem cells can have the power to differentiate into almost two hundred different cells types within the human body. Critics would argue the ethical dilemma behind on how scientists obtain these stem cells and whether or not the process of using these stem cells is worth it, but with the advancements going on around the subject of stem cells, it is worth it!
Opinions on stem cell research and other controversial scientific techniques can be seen subliminally throughout literature, one example that sticks out is Frankenstein. Frankenstein is a creation where scientist went wrong. The monster is described as “unnatural” and “grotesque” throughout the novel (Shelley 54). Mrs. Shelley wants to express her feelings about how scientist should have limits when people want to become innovators because when using techniques such as cloning and stem cells, things can go wrong and cause great harm to people, and hey you might even create a monster of your own.
Is the risk worth reward? That's basically the question I was trying to poke at throughout my essay. In my opinion, yes it is. Stem cell research has provided hope to many people that at one point their life would be forever be changed. Burn victims being able regain function of their arms, or disabled veterans achieve walking again. With everything it is important to know about a subject before you speak or act upon it, and with stem cell research it is important that the appropriate amount of research is done in order to be able to successfully help the individuals in need and not to create a monster of your own. I feel that there should be no limits when working with stem cells because of the opportunity and hope it presents, but hey who knows stem cell research could make a monster of its own someday.
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