Friday, March 28, 2003

Anthrax? That's soo 2001.

Apparently the fact that the person who murdered several people through the mail with Anthrax powder last year was probably an American working in a lab somewhere does not faze the Bush Administration.

A Bush administration program to add at least three bioweapons labs is troubling many scientists and arms control experts, who say it can't be good to train more microbiologists in the black art of bioterror..."It's perversely increasing the risk of exposure," said Richard Ebright, a Rutgers University chemistry professor and bioweapons expert who believes one additional lab is all that is needed.

Ebright and others believe labs managed by universities could prove less secure than government facilities, which have had their own security lapses.

Many believe the anthrax attacks that killed five people and briefly paralyzed Capitol Hill in 2001 were launched by a scientist with access to one of the government's high-security facilities -- called Biosafety Level 4 labs, or BSL-4 for short.

Not to mention the runaway monkeys.

But mistrust runs deep, especially in the California college town of Davis. Lobbied intensely by vocal residents, the city council voted to oppose the school's application to build a lab.

The Davis protests reached a crescendo in February with the escape of a lab monkey, which is still missing. Davis officials said it was disease-free and probably now dead. Still, the school's $200 million bid for a BSL-4 lab has been jeopardized.

You know, Outbreak was a terrible movie. I really don't want to see it again. Especially as real life.

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