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letter to the editor


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attached is a letter to the editor i submitted to the oregonian today. i wrote in response to a farily negative article on the Bodyworks exhibits at OMSI. http://www.oregonlive.com/living/oregonian/index.ssf?/base/living/118376431941080.xml&coll=7


i was supposed to do 150 words or less, so i wish i could have said more, but at least i included something on animal experimentation.




The 7/7/07 article entitled "Exhibit or Exhibitionism” portrayed the Bodyworks exhibit as unethical & scandalous.

The first comment I question refers to the "packaging & sale" of bodies. Concern was raised that the exhibit is advertised as educational, yet money is charged for entry. Do they question why OMSI, an educational institution, charges for exhibits? Some of the critics in this article are professors, who charge students large sums for education.

I agree with the comment that the body should be treated as sacred after death; yet this exhibit doesn’t fail to do so. I attended the exhibit and saw the figures portrayed with emphasis on the complexity and beauty of creation. These aren’t the gruesome scenes we often see on TV which promote violence and "morbid fantasies." In addition, humans should be treated as sacred before death--yet we allow homelessness, hunger, and war to continue.

Lastly, the only way we’ll continue to advance science & health is by studying humans. The people in the exhibit gave consent; they weren’t harmed. Yet many still promote the testing of animals in the name of science. Animals don’t consent and are tortured. Unfortunately, animal experiments don’t always correspond to humans. Some drugs that were found fatal in animals were life-saving in humans, and vice-versa.

No wonder visitors’ opinions have been mixed--we’re dissociative on the topics of life, death, violence, and our own bodies.

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