Home
In this issue
April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Feb. 14, 2008 / 8 Adar I 5768

Target research

By Debra J. Saunders

Debra J. Saunders
Printer Friendly Version
Email this article

http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | This month, opponents of scientific research set off an incendiary device at the home of Edythe London to protest her medical research at UCLA. In October, the research opponents flooded London's home. In the preceding two years, activists left bombs, which failed to ignite, outside of the home and under the car of two UCLA researchers.


Since August, activists have harassed UC Berkeley professors at their homes late at night and even leafleted the soccer game of a researcher's child, according to UC Berkeley spokesman Robert Sanders.


Who are these anti-research extremists and why are they waging a campaign of intimidation against law-abiding scientists?


They are animal-rights activists who oppose medical research with laboratory animals. Of course, these activists have a right to their opinion. But they do not have a right to terrorize researchers — and their children — because they don't like the way these scientists are working to cure disease.


"I think it's important to call this terrorism," said Michael Conn, co-author of the book, "The Animal Research War" and associate director of the Oregon National Primate Research Center. "This is not an effort to change laws or persuade people. It's an effort to frighten and intimidate."


Researchers have good reason to be afraid. In 2005, Jerry Vlasak, a Southern California trauma surgeon and leader of the North American Animal Liberation Front, which is an animal rights organization, told a U.S. Senate committee that he could justify killing researchers. Vlasak said, "I don't think you'd have to kill — assassinate — too many. I think for five lives, 10 lives, 15 human lives, we could save 1 million, 2 million or 10 million nonhuman lives."


Now researchers know that if they dedicate themselves to working on cures to save lives, they do so at the risk of risk forfeiting their own.


The scare tactics are working. In 2005, UCLA researcher Dario Ringach e-mailed Vlasak, "You win." Ringach pledged to stop animal research. In 2002, after being targeted and threatened with hundreds of calls, letters and e-mails by animal rights activists, Michael Podell, a leading HIV researcher, left Ohio State University and went into private veterinary practice.


For every Ringach and Podell, there must be many more young scientists who decide not to become involved in vital medical research because they don't want to subject their families to the harassment and they don't want to live their lives in fear.


Conn doesn't understand how a woman can have her home flooded and torched — because she is researching nicotine addiction — and there is no outrage.


Maybe it is because these activists claim that they are acting on behalf of lab animals that the public doesn't care that these anonymous bullies are terrorizing good people striving to save lives.


They compare themselves to Mohandas Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr., Conn noted, "But I don't remember Gandhi or King wearing masks and coming at night, burning houses or threatening children."


He added, "Whoever thought that somebody doing ethical and federally regulated research would have to live like they're in a war zone?" In the age of the Internet, which allows activists to intimidate scientists with complete anonymity and no consequences, it may be time for universities to build Green Zones for researchers.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

Comment JWR contributor Debra J. Saunders's column by clicking here.

Debra J. Saunders Archives

© 2007, Creators Syndicate

Columnists

Toons

Lifestyles