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Thanks to signators of the Open Letter

Genetic Crossroads
February 28th, 2000

We want to thank the over 250 of you who responded to our last-minute


request to sign the Open Letter on human germline genetic engineering,


which was distributed at the Symposium on Science, Ethics and
Society

held at the Asilomar Conference Center on February 15-17. As
most of

you know, sixty-seven noted biologists, scholars, lawyers, government


officials and others gathered at this invitation-only event
to assess

the experience of genetic engineering regulation in the US ,
and to

consider its future prospects.


The signators to the Open Letter are extraordinarily diverse.
They

include scientists, physicians, public health experts, disabled


rights activists, environmentalists, African-American, Latino-

American and Native-American activists, women's health leaders,


artists, high school teachers, religious leaders, attorneys,
nurses,

students and others. They come from North America, Europe, Africa,


Latin America, Asia and Australia. We believe that the Open
Letter

successfully demonstrated that any attempts to move humanity
down

a slippery slope towards a techno-eugenic future will arouse
strong

opposition.


The text of the Open Letter is attached at the end of this
newsletter.

We can email you a text-file containing the letter as distributed,


including the signators, or we can send you a hard copy of the
document

itself. Let us know if you would like either or both of these.
If you

would like a hard copy be sure to include your postal address.


A brief report on the Symposium at Asilomar follows. It highlights


those aspects that concern the politics of germline engineering.
The

Symposium agenda is shown following these comments.


An official report is being prepared by Prof. Alexander M.
Capron of

the Pacific Center for Health Policy and Ethics at the University
of

Southern California, which sponsored the Symposium. Contact
him at

<[email protected]> to find out how to get a copy.


Press accounts of the Symposium appeared in the Los Angeles
Times

(2/19/00, page A3: "Gene Therapy Testing on People is Called
Too

Risky"), the San Jose Mercury-News

<http://www.sjmercury.com/svtech/news/indepth/docs/gene021700.htm>,
and

USA Today <http://www.usatoday.com/life/health/genetics/therapy/lhgth024.htm>.


Some signators to the Open Letter have not previously received
this

newsletter. If you do not wish to remain on our list, please
let

us know. See the instructions in "About the Techno-Eugenics
Email

List newsletter," near the end of this message.



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