I’ve been reading many, many articles this past month which talk about the uncertainty over genetically engineered salmon in Prince Edward Island.
Now, I’m a strong advocate for feeding the world’s hungry people – so obviously I’m fairly pro-genetic engineering if it’s going to stop people from dying in Africa.
But in this case my rage is not directed at the knee-jerk environmentalism that’s opposed to feeding the world’s starving children over concerns of “what will happen if we let people actually eat those fish” (hint: they won’t die of starvation), and “what if they escape into the wild?” (answer: they’re sterile.) Rather it’s directed at a misuse of a reference.
I’m referring to the use of the term Frankensalmon. More specifically, the blatantly incorrect use of the term.
In addition to being a guy who loves having too much food and the movement to make sure that everyone else on Earth can enjoy that same problem, I’m also a fan of horror literature.
Unsurprisingly, that means I’ve actually read Mary Shelley’s classic Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus.
First off: Frankenstein isn’t the monster. Frankenstein is the scientist who invented the monster. Victor Frankenstein is our villain protagonist. So referring to these fish as Frankensalmon is totally wrong.
If anything they should be called Salmonsters. Or at the very least Frankenstein’s Salmon.
Secondly, there’s the issue with the creation of the monster. Frankenstein built his creature out of the stitched together remnants of human (and, as is strongly implied, animal) corpses. The creature is then animated with the awesome energy of a lightning bolt, infusing its body with the electrical spark that powers his existence.
So unless these fish have been brought back from the dead then they are not, in fact, Frankenanything.
And, for the record, I would be against eating something that was brought back from the dead. The issues surrounding food spoilage, especially in fish, are pretty serious.
But seeing as these fish were grown in controlled farm conditions, which makes them larger and healthier than wild salmon (and, presumably means they contain less deadly, deadly mercury,) I’d say they’re not abominations against the laws of God and man.
Or at least, for abominations they sure look plump and yummy!
What I’m getting at is this; if you’re going to draw an analogy, draw the right analogy, assholes.
These are Salmonculi. Let’s try to keep some perspective on what’s important here.
While your post is LOL-worthy, I’d be curious to know why people are so fearful of genetically modified foods. We’ve been genetically modifying foods for centuries. Why the huge fear? I think the benefits far outweigh the risks
(BTW, if you’re going to argue with me about pesticide use, then we’re talking about two different things, so don’t bother starting there.)
I echo Adam’s statements. I, too, have long wondered what the big deal is about so-called frankenfood. It’s exactly what we’ve been doing for centuries, at an expedited rate.
I do take issue with the statement that, because these fish are raised in fish farms, they probably contain less mercury. Farmed fish actually tend to have higher levels of mercury (something to do with the type of feed their given).
However, Health Canada has a maximum amount of mercury that can be found in fish that actually go to market. So, really, regardless of where your fish comes from, it should be safe to eat.