by Peter Franklin
Tuesday, 8
June 2021

Will we accept human-animal hybrids?

The reaction to a new Netflix series shows that we may not be ready just yet...
by Peter Franklin

Sweet Tooth is a new big budget series from Netflix. Better described as fantasy than science fiction, it is set in a future where “nature made everyone sick” because “bad people ruled the Earth”. But then a “miracle happened” and human-animal hybrids were born. 

What follows is a struggle for acceptance as bigoted humans try to wipe out the hybrids. These faux headlines (actually an advert in a real newspaper) make the political subtext clear: “General calls hybrids a threat to national security; Activists fight back”.

It’s as subtle as a brick and equally original. 

What did surprise me, however, was the following tweet from Netflix featuring images of the hybrid babies, each sporting a different set of animal features — dog, bird, deer and pig:

Though we were invited to find the hybrid babies “cute”, the replies to the tweet were overwhelmingly negative: “sick”, “vile”, “Alex Jones was right” etc etc. We hear a lot about ‘transhumanism’ these days, but clearly cishumanist sentiment is alive and kicking. 

I have to agree with cishumanists. The images are disturbing — and all the more so for presenting the ultimate transgression as “cute”. Of course, we’re talking about a work of fiction here and not one that concerns itself much with scientific credibility. 

Even if it were possible to engineer a full human-animal hybrid (as opposed to the insertion of a limited number of animal derived genes) and sustain it beyond the earliest stages of embryonic development, it would look nothing like the kids of Sweet Tooth. No, the results would be… messier. 

Of course, if we ever get to that stage it won’t be through some sudden “miracle”, but step by step — each one justified under the banner of scientific progress and signed off by the appropriate ethics committees.  

Should these experiments then succeed in producing viable offspring, and if they are found to be useful in some way to their creators, then you can be sure that the effort to secure public acceptance would draw upon the language of diversity and tolerance. 

How far along the road to ‘progress’ are we? Only last months the US Senate rejected a proposed ban on the creation of human-animal chimeras for medical research purposes.

So while we’re a long way from destroying the distinction between man and beast, the process has begun. 

Join the discussion

  • Exactly. It is sentimentality driven to insane extremes. These are proceeding apace towards the degradation of human exceptionalism – which in turn fits in with an utter disregard for freedom. Left-modernism, to use Eric Kaufman’s illuminating term, regards us all as animals, to be fed, starved, mixed, mated, sterilised or killed as the left-modernists see fit – take, for example, their attitude to unborn infants. Take their equally inhuman attitude to migration, by the terms of which the immediate resettlement of millions takes precedence over the human achievement of particular culture. Decadence and barbarism are in strange alliance, and “anti-humanism” is their banner.

  • This appalling programme comes straight from the vegan / “animal rights” stable, which imagines no difference between humans and beasts. Do animals care for each other beyond infancy or the boundaries of the pack? Do they hold each other to account, organise persistent, large scale schemes of mutual assistance across breed and species, clearly articulate feelings or ideas, produce technology beyond the obvious or sustain culture? No. They do not, for all the petty experiments which suggest that an octopus might be Einstein or a parrot capable of solving Fermat’s last theorem. And the secret acknowledgement of this point among the animal rights brigade is found in their aversion to hold animals accountable for anything. Is the tiger put on trial for eating the gazelle? The hedgehog fined for injuring the slow worm? Again, no. Blurring the human / animal distinction is yet another totalitarian symptom of our shady times.

  • Completely agree, the idea that humans are some special category flies in the face of evolutionary evidence, and in particular in reflection on the conduct of humans.
    To Sanford, above,I’d say the impulse if the tiger in killing an antelope is no worse than you paying someone to run an abattoir for you, and humans wars are no more or less bad than territorial battles by seals – we’re just a bit ‘better’ at it than they are.

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