PostHuman Ethics: PETA Enjoins DIY Cyborg Cockroach Kit
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) is claiming that a government-funded neuroscience startup is doing terrible things to roaches in the name of education.
Backyard Brains in Ann Arbor, Michigan, which is backed by the National Institute of Mental Health, sells a $99 kit that lets anyone with time, patience, and a spare cockroach create a RoboRoach, a living cockroach whose movements are remotely controlled by its human caretaker…
Building your very own cyborg bug involves dipping a live cockroach in ice water to anesthetize it, cutting off most of its antennas, inserting electrodes into the remaining stubs, then supergluing a little headset atop the insect’s head. A small receiver snaps into the headset and rests on the bug’s back….
To stop any more Franken-bug kits from being created – about 300 have been sold so far, according to the company — PETA filed a complaint with Michigan’s attorney general and state regulators charging that Backyard Brains is practicing veterinary medicine without a license, [a felony].
(via RoboRoach Cyborg Cockroaches Boycotted by PETA | TIME.com)