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California Bans Transgenic Pet Fish
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Via Alex Knapp, here's the story.

California is the only state with a ban on transgenic species, and sales of the fluorescent GloFish are expected everywhere else next month.

State regulators banned sales of the trademarked fluorescent GloFish after a hearing Wednesday.

"For me it's a question of values; it's not a question of science,'' said Sam Schuchat, a member of the state Fish and Game Commission. "I think selling genetically modified fish as pets is wrong.''

Conservation groups and commercial fishers cited concerns that the fish could escape or be released into waterways and cross-breed with other fish. The ban stems from the fear that transgenic farmed fish, such as salmon, could get loose and devastate wild fish populations.

So fears about trangenic salmon have led them to ban the GloFish? Well that makes perfect sense. And as Knapp points out, the head of the California Game and Fish Commission thinks it's "a question of values". Give me a break.

First of all, what your average schmoe doesn't realize, because the level of biology education in the country is so paltry, is that every single domesticated plant and animal has been genetically modified...through artificial selection. You think a French Poodle is natural?

It's admittedly more direct and more powerful to manipulate the genetic composition of an organism at the DNA level, rather than through selective breeding, but it's essentially the same concept. And like any human-produced organic product sold on the open market, transgenic plants or animals should be rigorously tested for safety. Subject them to FDA approval or denial, and if they pass, let them be sold.

This balk at transgenic organisms is reactionary, and stupid.

Most people don't realize that the production of certain drugs, such as insulin and interferon, are a direct result of recombinant DNA technology.

Anyway, it's a shame when ignorance impedes progress.

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