10 April 2014

Owning the Fab Four

Peter Goldsworthy's Honk If You Are Jesus features misadventures in a plot to "clone" a particular religious entity. Scientists have considered cloning dodos, mammoths,  and other recently dead species. Canadian dentist Michael Zuk more modestly plans to use what is claimed to be John Lennon's wisdom tooth to "clone John Lennon" and then "raise the child as his own".

He is reported as stating "My goal is to own John Lennon’s DNA", characterising the tooth as "basically genetic real estate".

The Daily Mail reports that Zuk purchased the molar for around US$33,000 at an auction and "now hopes to extract enough genetic data from it to recreate the musician".  Oh dear.
'If there is enough DNA to sequence it, it could be basically genetic real estate,' he told television vet Mark Evans, who tracked him down for a Channel 4 programme. 
'My goal is to own John Lennon’s DNA.' Dr Zuk revealed that, once cloning technology is far advanced enough to replicate humans, he would clone Lennon and raise him as his own son. ' 
He could be looked at as my son but I don’t think I would be the one, you know, owning his property, he would have the rights when he was old enough to make a claim,' said Dr Zuk. 
Asked how he could ensure the new Lennon ended up a rockstar, and not a dentist like his own son, Dr Zuk replied: 'He would still be his exact duplicate but you know, hopefully keep him away from drugs and cigarettes, that kind of thing. 
'But you know, guitar lessons wouldn’t hurt anyone right?'
Moving from stupidity into delirium, Evans reportedly
asked Dr Zuk if he believes he would really 'own' John Lennon. ' 
I think I can, because of the laws,' the dentist told him. 
'Depends where you do these things. If it can’t be done in one country you can do these things in another.' 
Brilliant legal analysis there.
Dr Zuk added: 'To have John Lennon's DNA sequence outside of the family protection to me, and full access to it, is worth millions.' 
The dentist said that if the first version of John Lennon Jr didn't quite work our as planned, he might be willing to try cloning the musician more than once. 'Well, if it works once it’s going to work again, right?' he said. 
Mr Zuk has previously admitted that it might be some time before he is able to realise his vision of Lennon mkII.
Quite so.

I was rather hoping that he'd announce plans to clone all four Beatles plus Janis Joplin and perhaps Nellie Melba.