April 13,1998 The Nat,inn.




The Biotec,. I

Human l i f e s’ht

n little more than a generation, our definition of life and the sensational headlines and captured the public imagination, many
meaning of existence is likely to be radically altered. Long-held forces are quietly converging to create this powerful new social
assumptions about nature, including our own human nature, current.At the epicenter is a technology revolution unmatched in
are likely to be rethought. Many age-old practices regarding all of history in its power to remake ourselves, our institutions
sexuality, reproduction, birth and parenthood could be partially and our world: Scientists are beginning to reorganize life at the
abandoned. Ideas about equality and democracy are also likely to genetic level. The new biotechnologies are already reshaping a
be redefined, as well as our vision of what is meant by terms such wide range of fields, including forestry, agriculture, animal hus-
as “free will” and “progress.” Our very sense of self and society bandry, mining, energy, bioremediation, packaging and construc-
will likely change during what I call the emerging Biotech tion materials, pharmaceuticals, medicine, and food and drink.
Century, as it did when the early Renaissance spirit swept over Before our eyes lies an uncharted new landscape whose con-
medieval Europe more than 600 years ago. tours are being shaped in thousandsof biotechnology laboratories
Although Dolly the sheep and talk of cloning have gathered around the world.

somatic gene therapy and ture market potential. are paving the way for the wholesale tion for their new “inventions. is giving the marketplace the com. ically engineered tissue. the globalization of commerce and trade make pos- sible the wholesale reseeding of the Earth’s biosphere with a Human Life as Intellectual Property laboratory-conceived Second Genesis. human gene screen- processes used to alter them. D. argue . just as the industrial age access to’and con- medicine are being consolidated under the umbrella of giant trol over fossil fuels and valuable metals helped determine “life” companies in the emerging biotech marketplace. biotechnologies. “This is the information age. and bio- and products.catalogue and organ- ing to exert their influence and control over the new genetic ize genetic information. Recombinant DNA mercial protection. enes are the “green gold” of the Biotech Century. makes up the biotech economy. justifiable. ing and surgery. Up. a global trading market to reseed the earth techniques and other biotechnologies allow scientistsand biotech with an artificial Second Genesis. Microsoft chainnan Bill Gates sums up the new collabo- search. creating a new store of genetic capital commerce. a new communicationstool to or- for specific economic ends. ciety are amplifications of they create a framework for a new economic era: nature’s own principles a&. however. C. meeting with strong resistance from nongovernmental organi- 0 Fifth. Computationaltechnologies and santo Corporation.1998 Global life-sciencecompanies like Novartis. long a world leader in chemical products.dium to manage the genetic information that SmitbKline Beecham. as the primary base. reality. The consolidation of the life-science industry by logical information is probably the most interesting information global commercial enterprises rivals the consolidations. plants. Transnationalcompanies argue Century: Harnessing the Gene and Remaking the World (Tarcher/ that patent protection is essential if they are to risk financial re- Putnam). as well as the life patents. Life-science fields ranging from agriculture to world economy. Du Pont. computers and revised mercial incentive to exploit the new resources. April 13. control over world markets. Merck and Dow Chemical. manipulate and exploit genetic resources a new supporting sociology. an artificially produced bioindustrial nature designed to replace nature’s own evolution. a spate of new scientific studies on the genetic basis zations and countries in the Southern Hemisphere. The new ideas about of technological and social nature provide the legitimiz- forces come together to create The economic and political forces that contyol ing framework for the Bio- a new “operating matrix. useful products to market. including DNA chips. the ability to isolate.new cosmological narrative.” I tech Century by suggesting see seven strands composing * the planet’s genetic resources will exercise that the way we are reorgan- the operating matrix of the tremendous power over the world economx . therefore. download. mergers we are deciphering and trying to decide to change. manipulate the new green gold resides in scientific laboratories Q Sixth. of nature compatible with the operating assumptions of the new Great economic changes in history occur when a number technologies and the new global economy. the Biotech Century brings with it a newcresource making the gene pool available. hoping to locate microbes. Typical of the trend is the bold decision by the Mon. The Biotech tropical ecosystems of the South. identify and recombine genes is In short.” the twenty-first century-computer telecommunications. development and marketing in biotech-based technologies rative efforts by saying. genes. It’s all a and acquisitions going on in the other great technology arenas of question of how. Rohm and Haas. animals and humans with rare genetic traits that might have fu- netic screening. researchers john. Southern countries. which are of human behavior and the new sociobiology that favors nature beginning to demand an equitable sharing of the fruits of the over nurture are providing a cultural context for the widespread biotech revolution.000 genes ready scouting the continents. Glmo Wellcome. genet. biotech the imminent prospect of genetic engineering of human eggs. organs and organisms. Together. Eli Lilly. All over the world. enter. izing our economy and so- Biotech Century. in turn. that make up the human genome and new breakthroughs in ge. not if. While the technological expertise needed to acceptance of new biotechnologies. The eco- ary scheme. are using computersto decipher. 0 Seventh. a new cosmological narrative about evolution is tainment and informationservices-although much less attention beginning to challenge the neo-Darwinian citadel with a view has been focused on it in the media and public policy. Multinational corporations are al- 0 Fourth.” alteration of the human species and the birth of a commercially Corporate effortsto enclose and commodifythe gene pool are driven eugenics civilization. for the first time. the awarding of patents on genes. the computer is providing the communications and and corporate boardrooms in the North. After locating the desired traits.A global life-science industry is already beginning nomic and political forces that control the genetic resources to wield unprecedented power over the vast biological resources of the planet will exercise tremendous power over the future of the planet. ark quickly maneuver. most of the genetic re- sources that are essential to fuel the new revolution lie in the This article is adapted froin Jeremy Rijkin’s new book. the mapping of the approximately 100.the new cultural currents. cell lines. for use in the bioindustrial age. Q Third. the global life-science industry. 0 First. Together. Rijlcin is president of the Foundation on Economic Treads sources and years of research and development bringing new and in Washington. an emerging eugenics science. companies are modifying them and then seeking patent protec- sperm and embryonic cells.12 The Nation. companies to locate. theories of evolution are beginning to remake the world. ganize and manage economic activity at the genetic level and a 0 Second. to genetic technologies are fusinginto a powerful new technological sell off its entire chemical division in 1997 and anchor its re. new forms of com- raw resource for future economic activity. organizational me. a new set of transformingtechnologies.

that violates the integrity of life precedent in the recent historic decision by the nations of the itself-and our deepest sense of morality. then- geneticist and professor emeritus at Stanford University.impractical. he felt about research efforts to secure blood sambles. by the Guaymi General Congress in Panama waged a public protest. . a group of SouthPacific island Sforza defends the research. The public protest forced the U. subject that the group planned to take blood samples from the world‘s matter relating to human cells is patentable and there is no provi- 5.S. government filedtwo biotech companies biopros. therefore. they will find some “genetic to the Department of Health and Human Services. where cholera is an should somehow share in the advantages. price-that it should remain an open commons and continue and our place in it. The 1. a set of guidelines calling for a ban on the transport of %hole searcher from the National Institutes of Health had taken a blood blood. A re. has Secretary of Commerce Ron Brown responded curtly: been the subject of increasing controversy since it became public Under our laws. world to maintain ihe continent of Antarctica as a global.000 linguistically distinct populations in order to assess their sion for considerations relating to the sources of the cells that genetic makeup and search for any unique genetic traits they may be the subject of a patent application. that “in the unlikely and we have the mutations. both at present and in the future. To patent human material . The controversy over patenting genes from in- gency of late with increasing reports of scientific institutions as digenous peoples flared again.I. That being the case. and international patents on a virus derived from the cell In January 1996the Indian Society of Human Genetics issued line of a 26-year-old Guaymi Indian woman from Panama. Project sponsors hope that by sampling the genomes of the In March’1995. dubbed the “vampireproject” by its nations prepared a joint proposal and communiqu6 that would critics.G. discovered that the U. may have that might prove important and useful in the future. Cavalli. a large group of people appear to be immune The concerns of critics came alive in 1993. making it surprisesyy that could be a boon to humankind in its search for the first human cell line from an indigenous population to be new ways to improve the genetic makeup of the race. DNA.H. action..H. cell-lines.S. several months later when well as pharmaceutical and the U. April 13. An Alaska businessmanfound that his own additional patent claims inthe pecting the human genome United States and Europe for itself in remote regions of the body parts had been patented by U.L. C. profes- event that there is some gene that becomes commercially valuable. president of the congress. that might confer the genetic advantage in hopes of finding a new ganization. villagers and peasant farniers who isolate. and cell lines taken from citizens world. are beginning to take a third position. It’s arguing that the gene pool ought not to be for sale at any fundamentally immoral. researchers because hade it clear that any such agreement should specify “the ob- members of this remote Indian community carry a unique virus jectives of the project and the anticipated scientific material that stimulates the production of antibodies that scientists ’ believe imd economic benefits and the manner that they are to be shared might be useful in A I D S and leukemia research. could then seek to patent a genetic trait of the Guaymi and profit A growing number of nongovernmental organizations.S. a nongovernmental or.A.” ever-present threat.S. when the Rural to the disease. said at the time that he valuable herbs and plant crops. saying it is important to seek out whatever remaining ge. When the effort headed by Dr. contrary to the G u a m view of nature.. patented. They cite ’ DNA and patent its products. cell line was of particular interest to N. I never imagined people would patent plants and animals. a scientific Papua New Guinea. make their sovereign space a “patent-free zone. Cavalli-Sforza says that while his he Indian government has also expressed its deep misgivings personal view is that there should be no patents on DNA. patent application.S.S. however.H.14 The Nation.1998 that the real research and development effort takes place years Upon learning about the patent application.He suggests. .S. com- mons free of commercial exploitation. is consideredto be an from the Human Genome Diversity Project may make such no. “Name any genetic disorder tions .S. they claim was shocked that an august scientific body like the N.” says Samir Brahmachari. of the extinction of these populations or through their melding T into the general population. government had sought both form of treatment for the disease. in West Bengal. enhance and preserve Isidro Acosta.Angry at the U. The Hum& Genome a court ruled that he had no pyoperty n‘ghts! of the Solomon Islands and Diversity Project.” The action came in the wake . but the group.Luca Cavalli-Sforza. government. with its that the commercial value of the genetic information emerging diverse cultures and inbred populations. as well as those of many other countries. a population government of the Solomon Islands issued a protest. the U.” The United netic variety exists before it’s irretrievably lost. without advising the Guaymi of its intentions. Bangalore.I. Patent Office issued a patent for few groups of indigenous peoples that have remained isolated the Papua New Guinea Human T-lymphotrophic virus (HTLV-I) from the rest of the outside world. The GUaymi formal agreements between collaboratingparties. ideal setthg for gene prospecting.. either as a result States quietly dropped the patent claim in 1996. India. skeletal and fossil material” pending sample fkom the woman and developed the cell line. as well from their biological inheritance in the global marketplace: as some countries. sor of molecular biophysics at the Indian Institute of Science in the people who donated it-not the individual. Luigi . government to withdraw its The debate over life patents has taken on even greater ur. For example. Scientists are now searching for the gene or genes Advancement Foundation International. representativesof before the scientists ever seteyes on the organism and gene. could some form of compensation for their contribution to the biotech so wantonly violate the genetic privacy of his tribe and that the revolution. U.to take human to be used freely by present and future generations. U..

a company doing genomic research to the Sandoz Pharmaceutical Corporation. Pfizer. as Indian law forbids the export of world Global pharmaceutical companies spent more than biological material without permission from the I. Se- Novartis. J.R.S. a US. Eli Lilly has entered into an agreement with Millen. Several of the largest life-sciencecompanies are strategi- forty square miles in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean often re- ferred to as the world’s loneliest island. . Meanwhile.000 businessman named John Moore found his own body parts had genes.I. holding that he had no property right over his own body tissues. For their part. a University of agrochemical companies control 81 percent ofthe $29 billion Toronto medical geneticist.L. quana and other genomics firmsmaintain that market incentives Du Pont and AgrEvo. Human body parts. Corange Internationalmade a $100 mil. giving rise to charges that it is putting commercial patent covering the technique for removing cells fiom a pa. California.S. pharmaceutical giants are the best and most efficient way to advance the research. from the N. Council of Medical Research said it should have been notified science complexes from which to fashion a bioindustrial of the research in advance. commercially and could not hope to turn a profit if they couldn’t Other global life-science firms are close on the heels of keep their research proprietary-at least until it’s patented. in 1995.5 billion in 1995buying up biotech firms. diagnosed as having a rare cancer and underwent treatment at lion research agreement with Gene Medicine. an Alaska supposed to contain the partial sequences for nearly 100. genomics companies like Sequana to the patient’s body. Moore had been on atherosclerosis. covered that Moore’s spleen tissue produced a blood protein that quana Therapeutics to advance gene work on obesity and facilitates the growth of white blood cells that are valuable anti- diabetes. without his knowledge.G.C. been patented.L. Sequana is one of a handful of trol 37 percent of the $15 billion global seed market. peutics of La Jolla. agribusiness and agro. Ten life-science companies con. to the tiny volcanic island of Tristan da Cunha.A. The new biotech start-up companies dedicated to gene prospecting. Pharmacia and genomes are being patented by commercial companies in the Upjohn have invested in Incyte. by U. Genetic Therapy held license on a broad in the field. a U. and financed by Sequana Thera- global agrochemical market. a strip of ’ 1 ket. creating life. Ten firms control emerging biotech revolution.-based genomic propertyright over his own tissue.1998 of revelations that the US. the court argued. seed companies. Noe Zamel. modifying their genetic makeup and returning them the disease. National Institutes of Health was il- 1 Bio-takeovers legally securing DNA and blood samples from patients at private eye hospitals in India without obtaining the appropriate author- ization required to take samples out of the countryeKesearchers lobal conglomeratesare rapidly buying up biotech start- up companies. a giant new global makes this small inbred local population interesting to Zamel firm resulting from the $27 billion merger of two Swiss and his team is that half of them suffer from asthma. neticist working for a large pharmaceutical company.16 The Nation. Synthelabo of France has bought a $9.” said one ge- agreements with many of the human genomic companies.H. GIaxo Wellcome has a five-year agreement with Se. ~ world’s top ten pharmaceutical firms control 47 percent of The “genomics” firms are on the commercial frontier of the the $197 billion pharmaceutical market. The cell line is estimated to be worth more than $3 billion. In a precedent-setting case in California. The Indian businesses. hunters to go. a U. In April 1997 the LosAngeles Times reported on The concentration of power is impressive. Its few hundred residents cally positioned to control much of the global bioindustrial are the descendants of British sailors who arrived in 1817.A. The acquisition guaranteedNovartis a acknowledge that they’re in business to exploitthe human genome foothold in the fledgling science of human gene therapy. In 1990 the California Supreme firm. as well as entered into spleen tissue and obtained a patent on its “inventiony’in 1984. including the Monsanto Corporation.5 National Eye Institute were searching for genes chemical concerns.6 billion the t seems there is no place on earth too remote for the gene same year on licensing arrangementswith them. or night blindness. The Sequana team traveled. second-largest land’s 300 residents and later reported that it had located two seed company and second-largest pharmacebtical firm. by way of a South African Navy ship.H. agrochemical company Ciba-Geigy-is typical. pharmaceutical. whose sales exceeded $211billion in 1995. claiming a agreement with Human Genomics. Be. relationships with Myriad. However. Scientists enterprises-the pharmaceutical company Sandoz and the hope to find the gene or genes responsible and patent them.C. Novartis. “candidate genes” responsible for asthma. Novartis is ’ Company scientists took blood samples from 270 of the is- the world’s largest agrochemical company. f i i whose database is United States. a $69 million research agreement with the genomic firm. and licensed nium pharmaceuticals. SmithKline Beecham has made a $125 million research Moore subsequentlysued the University of California. genomic U.7 million cancer agents. What market in the coming century. April 13. thus far the fore the merger. a U. and in addition I to outright acquisition spent approximately$1. Novartis and Eli Lilly have developed commercial off the record to Nature magazine’s editor. Dow Elanco. and food and drink companies. Court ruled against Moore. medical ahd health that cause retinitis pigmentosa.S. Sandoz purchased Genetic Therapy company has refused to share its findings with other researchers for $295 million. are purchasing equity holdings in and establishingresearch Others aren’t so sure. $3. who spoke Bayer.S. “The issue is a nightmare. considerations above collaborative efforts to find a cure for tient. The top ten a scientific expedition led by Dr. I 43 percent of the $15 billion veterinary pharmaceuticalsmar. The university created a cell line from Moore’s equity investment in Genset of France.-based genomic company Foreign nationals aren’t the only ones whose cell lines and that discovered a breast cancer gene. Toppingthe life-science list are ten transnatio@ food and drink companies. An attending physician and university researcher dis- firm.

Feminists. entity may benefit economically from the fortuitous value of co-discoverer of the DNA double helix and the former head of plaintiff’s diseased cells. Some. the way we express our faith. human family has picked up substantial momentum over the In May 1995 a‘coalition of more than 200 religious leaders. making it a very valuable commercial T asset.were stunned by the Patent Office’s decision. The increasing consolidation of corporate control over the T he extraordinary implications of privatizing the human genetic blueprints of life as well as the technologies to exploit body-parceling it out in the form of intellectual property to them is alarming. The company made no change in the blood itself. Dr. that reason alone. that make up the human genome.” Still. cord to any individual or institution unwilling to pay the patent fee. part of the human body. Blood cells firom the umbilical cord are particularly important The Backlash for marrow transplants. duced to commercial intellectual property controlled by global ing and are laying claims to vast regions of the human genome. firm.I. country in the world where it was still being practiced. with abolitionists argu- of Palo Alto.L. “If a journalist writes organizations. Abril13. value. consumer Sinai Hospital ofToronto asks rhetorically. calledtheventer patent claims “sheer terials above the marketplace. and then wins a Pulitzer Prize. arguing that life is imbued On the other hand. the way bilical cord of a newborn child and are being used for any thera. Nobel laureate Dr. re- might be liable for some kind of monetary damage.A. The last great debate of this kind occurred in the nineteenth A similarlybroad patent was awarded to a U. Still.C. making them the exclusive property cells from plaintiff by improper means. . century. Genome Mapping Research Team. companies. ever to fzce the human family. The abolitionists’ argument ultimately whatsoever to alter or engineer the cells. life-science conglomerates and traded as mere utilities in the Arnold Slutsky of the Samuel Lunenfield Institute of the Mount marketplace. but permits defendants. the court did say that the “inventors” had a responsibilityto its “discoverer” is likely to apply for a patent.000 human brain genes. 1998 could not be bartered as a commodity in the marketplace. the ownership of all human blood cells that have come from the um. Far from elevating these biological ma- the Human GenomeProject. to a U. the company now possesses commercial control over this to be conceived of as having intrinsic. from obtaining the benefit of ly 100. This patent on a human body rights” and cannot be made the personal commercial property part was awarded despite the fact that Systemix had done nothing of another human being.the way we work. line itself. in large part because of the quickened pace including the titular heads of virtually every major Protestant de- of mapping and sequencing the approximately 100. for knowing the function or role of the gene.for more than $70 million. had breached their fiduciary responsibilityand then head of the N. prevailed. A number of scien- the majority’s rejection of plaintiff‘s conversion cause of action tists were upset because Venter sought patents on genes before does not mean that body parts may not be bought and sold for research or commercial purpose or that no private individual or even knowing their function. It should be emphasizedthat this patent was awarded simply he debate over life patents is one of the most important issues because Biocyte was able to isolate the blood cells and deep. especially when we stop to consider that the commercial institutions-are illustrated quite poignantly in biotech revolution will affect every aspect of our lives. way we engage in politics. ever.S: taxpayers. who allegedly obtained the species will be patented. Systemix. past several years. The patent is so broad that it allows this one dividual and shared realities will be deeply touched by the new company to refuse the use of any blood cells from the umbilical technologies of the Biotech Century. the very concept of patenting life. Leukemia Society ofAmerica. The way the case of a patent awarded by the European Patent Office we eat.liability. .S. agribusiness and biotech full economic value of their ill-gotten gains free of.S. and legally sanctioned slavery was abolishedin every cal establishment. animal rights groups. to retain and exploit the of global pharmaceutical.S. Peter Quesenberry. we perceive the world around us and our place in it-all our in- peutic purposes. by the U. of our beliefs about the very nature of life and whether it is Still. In 1991J. Life patents strike at the core freeze them. California. Many was captured by Judge Allen Broussard in his dissentingopinion. chemical.. The irony of the decision seeking patents on more than 2. farmers. while not the property of Moore.000 genes nomination. health advocates and socialjustice organizations an article on a family. researchers working on the Human GenomeProject were shocked He wrote that and angry. Venter and his colleagues filed applications claimed as the property of U. the majority’s holding simply bars lunacy. Craig Venter. often before even inform Moore of the commercial potential of his tissue and. it’s likely that within less than ten years. How.000 or so genes that constitute the genetic legacy of our the cell’s value. quipped. could justifiably be At the same time. “Where do you draw the a new generation of genetic activists is beginning to challenge line? Can you patent a hand?. the near- pluirztzfi the source of the cells. the medical affairs vice chairman of the Like the anti-slavery abolitionists of the nineteenth century. the way we have our babies. company named Biocyte. The patent gives the firm the way our children are raised and educated. or mere utility. the way we date and marry. more than a hundred Catholic bishops and Jewish. James Watson. even in the medi. over the issue of human slavery. Patent Office. charging Venter with attempting to profit from re- search initially paid for by U. does he around the world are coalescinginto a new and powerfid counter- give the family a percentage of his winnings?’ vailing force to the growing genetic commerce that trades in the The entrepreneurial scramble to patent the genome of the blueprints of life. As soon as a gene is tagged.18 The Nation. many in the molecular biology field see with intrinsic value and therefore can never be legitimately re- no apparent ethical problem or moral dilemma in gene prospect. covering all ing that every human being has intrinsic value and “God-given human bone-marrow stem cells. the signed his government post to head up a genomics company court upheld the primary claim of the university that the cell funded by a venture capital fund.H.

they are unanimous in their much of the political agenda of the Biotech Century. and be- corporations when it is freely given as a gift of God. corporations to divest from Burma. have all but disappeared. These “direct service” activities often at any time since the late sixties. “but it’s spread around a lot of have a politicizing impact on students. 1998 The Nation. century. defining used to create transgenic life forms. the paper educating the campus about events in Chiapas. News & World Many of the students involved in protest over Arc03 Bunna Report ranked it number one in commitmentto diversity in 1997. is religious leaders oppose “processs7patents for the techniques likely to emerge as the seminal issue of the coming era. 19 Muslim. Mexico. Massachusetts-based training program and schools.”The story summarized a U. explains Melissa Mazin. 1 activism. There’s no single focal point. connection had never been politically active before. reducing theologians? Either life is God’s creation or a human invention. dictatorship in Burma. close to half the student body is involved in com- i “That’s typical.S.” tive college and an unusually diverse one. “but some students get fixstrated Huber’s analysis certainly reflects the reality at Occidental Col. . How can life a world where they come to think of all life as mere invention- be defined as an invention to be profited from by scientists and where the boundaries between the sacred and the profane. which I head. devoid of any unique or essen- but it can’t be both. Hunt . MAN. selves. Then they lege. not humans. who was a key organizer of the protest. said. is going to become one of the as such should not be patented as inventions. tempt by “man7’to stake his own claim as the prime mover and to come together on an issue of mutual interest in the twentieth sovereign architect of life on earth.-sponsorednational survey of first-year college students that . In addition. like the Vietnam C. was instigatedby the Free Bunna Coalition..the largest assemblageof U.a Boston.S. But a few weeks earlier. tial quality that might differentiate it from the strictly mechani- an executive with the United Methodist Church. “Lots of students here had never heard of Burma.’ explained Sara Hunt. US. IT AIN’T THE SIXTIES-BUT T H E E ’ S PLENTY O F ACTIVISM QN CAMPUS. not charity. They are keenly aware of the profound consequences of tissues and organisms. to issue a public darity efforts. tion pushing U.” Huber claims coordinated by the student-run Center for Volunteerism and there are as many students involved in social activism today as Community Service. John Slaughter. try to find ways to make systemic change.VC. a national organiza- cally comparableto counterparts at other four-year colleges.” in turn.’” she says. organs. and free of commercial exploitation. “There’s a great deal of campus activism. different issues. 9 Intemational working on human rights and soli- who sits on the Atlantic Richfield (Arco) board. of nt- I PETERDBETEB.” said Sonya Huber ofthe Center for Campus munity service projects.” gible and immediate.’s director. so it’s harder to see. from Plano. clearinghouse. a freshman prograiti at Occideiital ColIege in Los Angeles. companies and are determined to hold the line against any at- The coalition. 1 he front-page headline in the January Los The campus has a crazy-quilt of student 1’ Angeles Times didn’t mince words: Tresh- men Get High Marks-in Apathy. life itself to an objectified status. ask the tween h t r i ~ ~and ~ i utility c value. “We believe cal? The battle to keep the earth’s gene pool an open commons.L. a 1. had failed to report on a successfulprotest cam. said that the patenting of life marked the most serious What might it mean for subsequent generations to grow up in challenge to the notion of God’s creation in history. announcedtheir opposition opposition to the patenting of the life forms and the parts them- to the granting of patents on animal and human genes. but it and volunteering for the AIDS Service Center-much of it hardly ever gets covered in the mainstreammedia. II LIKE. a Latino group that is fighting d growing careerism and declining interest California’s anti-aff irmative action policy and in politics. in which students $ discussiongroups.600-student liberal arts institution. religious leaders . “Genetic rights. Speaking for the coalition. located about three 8 group that bring speakersto campus and sponsor miles from the Times building. statement criticizing the oil giant’s support for the military which recruits students to support union organizing campaigns. Texas. The effort Nevertheless.C. a Women’s Center and a gay/lesbian paign at OccidentalCollege. organizations like Amnesty persuaded the collegepresident. when they see that it may not be changing anything. Buddhist and Hindu leaders. “Students like doing something that is tan- War or civil rights. that humans and animals are creations of God. its students and faculty are economicallyand politi. Abril13. including environmentalistswho pro- mote recycling and research siting of hazard- ous waste facilities in Los Angelis County.”While not all the critical struggles of the Biotech Age. Jaydee Hanson. The effort was organizedby the Foundation shifting authorship from God to scientists and transnational on Economic Trends. R/IECHA/ALAS. Occidental is a selec. including tutoring at local elementary Organizing.S. and the Student Labor Action Coalition (SLAC). much less its govern- Peter Dreier is a profssor ofpolitics and director of the public policy ment’s human rights abuses.A. working with homeless shelters and abused women.

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