Maybe the reporters just really screwed up the reporting here, but ScienceDaily is claiming that a majority of Americans doesn’t think nanotechnology is morally acceptable: “In a sample of 1,015 adult Americans, only 29.5 percent of respondents agreed that nanotechnology was morally acceptable.” They go on to say that europeans are more likely to see nanotechnology as morally acceptable (54% in the UK, 62% in Germany, 72% in France). In fact, I’m surprised that those numbers aren’t 100% everywhere. I had no idea nanotechnology was the least bit controversial. The article says that religion is somehow playing a role, and that nanotechnology is tantamount to “playing God”. (A phrase which is thrown around a lot, but I still don’t understand why medicine isn’t “playing God”.) Hopefully, this will fade away like complaints about artificial insemination did (although the Catholic Church apparently still calls it “morally unacceptable” even when it involves married couples).
On a related note, China is planning to expand their nanotechnology research. Meanwhile, the West is being held back by poorly thought-out religious concerns?