Burbank, California; November 2001; Joan Marques, MBA
The recent news about human embryo cloning could be perceived from different angles resulting in divergent opinions. On one hand it can be regarded a positive development that science has preceded this far in order to ?obtain replacement tissue in diseases like diabetes.? This implies that it is not the intention to copy human beings... Hence, the whole development sounds innocent and laudable enough. But history teaches us that science has the tendency to always go a little bit further. And so, aside from the fact that somewhere, somehow, in a small laboratory they probably already do much more than they tell us, one can wonder what the end-result of this whole experiment will be.
It might be relevant at this time to review reality and especially, the bigger picture of human existence. Let?s talk overpopulation in the world! We continue to do everything to not only maintain it, but to stimulate it as well. Definitely in the United States, where we plant and store for food-package deliveries to less-fortunate areas in the world, where we still overwhelmingly oppose euthanasia--the phenomenon of ending a life that is bound to end soon anyway due to incurable disease?, and where we clone with the aim to at least enable us to live longer, and at the highest to duplicate us. Is that great management or what?
So this is the moment that Daniel Quinn?s book ?Ishmael? comes to mind. Ishmael is a gorilla who analyses our world culture from the perspective of an outsider. He challenges us to reexamine our perception of life deeply, and to find out what ?mother culture? has taught our society through history. He divides humanity in two groups: the takers and the leavers. Takers are the ?modern? human beings, who live like we do: constantly producing, storing for hard times, cultivating, and thereby throwing everything out of balance. Leavers are those who we call the ?primitives?. The ones we chase away wherever we see them.
The most shocking effect of reading Ishmael is that, with his historical overview about modern civilization, he opens the reader?s eyes to see how ridiculous we are actually behaving. Moreover, to realize how we are racing toward self-destruction: simply because we say that we believe in a God, but meanwhile behave as if there is none. The only ones we count on are ourselves. We store, hustle, hunt for materialism, and we clone? ?Leavers? don?t do that. They respect their Gods and realize that we, just like lions, rats, cockroaches and plants, are creatures of the world. Nothing more or less! According to Ishmael the biblical book genesis is a parable in which Adam is Semite for ?Man? and Eve is Semite for ?life?. So, man was tempted by life. That explains our behavior these days, doesn?t it? No supervisors, just us. And Cain, according to Ishmael, symbolizes the Takers, while Abel represents the leavers. Conclusion: Cain and Abel are still very much alive, and Cain (modern society) is still hunting down Abel (the primitives) wherever he can.
Interesting view, isn?t it? What it has to do with management? Everything! For aren?t we the leaders of our life? And isn?t this all a pretty scary representation of modern human nature? What?s wrong with dying? What?s wrong with just living till the end? What happened to our perception about the relativity of things? Why are we opposing a relieving manipulation of death (euthanasia for terminally ill), if we are manipulating life to death? Won?t embryo cloning, whatever the real reason may be, contribute to the current overpopulation in the world? What exactly is our management strategy here?