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Bush Signs Bill To Take All Newborns' DNA

Home Forums General Columbus Discussion Everyday Chit Chat Bush Signs Bill To Take All Newborns’ DNA

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    Bush Signs Bill To Take All Newborns’ DNA



    President Bush last week signed into law a bill which will see the federal government begin to screen the DNA of all newborn babies in the U.S. within six months, a move critics have described as the first step towards the establishment of a national DNA database.

    Described as a “national contingency plan” the justification for the new law S. 1858, known as The Newborn Screening Saves Lives Act of 2007, is that it represents preparation for any sort of “public health emergency.”

    The bill states that the federal government should “continue to carry out, coordinate, and expand research in newborn screening” and “maintain a central clearinghouse of current information on newborn screening… ensuring that the clearinghouse is available on the Internet and is updated at least quarterly”.

    Sections of the bill also make it clear that DNA may be used in genetic experiments and tests.


    Here’s some more info…





    If it is not abused, I could see this being a good thing.



    surber17 wrote If it is not abused, I could see this being a good thing.

    Yes, and we KNOW government employees and agents would NEVER misuse this kind of thing. Why, the very idea they could possibly do such a thing and ruin someones life or violate their constitutional rights is patently ridiculous!



    Part of me thinks this is good if it is used in missing persons cases and the like. If I ever went missing and a random body turned up, I’d want my family to know whether or not it’s me they found, and the sooner the better. However, I just have a sinking feeling that this DNA database has the potential for horrible abuse, especially by law enforcement and insurance agencies.

    “Oh, you want health coverage? Your DNA sample shows you have a high risk for developing Disease X in another thirty years, so we’ll have to say NO.”



    There is no way this is a good thing.



    catnfiddle wrote

    “Oh, you want health coverage? Your DNA sample shows you have a high risk for developing Disease X in another thirty years, so we’ll have to say NO.”

    In fairness I have to point out that congress is close to passing, and it is assumed that president will ratify, the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act which is designed to prevent this kind of thing.

    I still suspect that it would be easy for an insurance company to deny coverage and invent some other reason for doing so and place the burden of proving genetic test discrimination squarely on the victim.

    its a brave new world in’it?


    A. Miller

    Wow – welcome back to CU – this is the first article I see after being away for a couple weeks. Jebus!

    If we have another kid I don’t see it happening at a hospital. If ever there was a good reason for home birthing this would be it.



    Actually, looking over a summary of the bill, it seems that all it really does is set up Federal funding and the creation of an advisory board for the CDC to overview current and expanding screening. Though, I could be wrong. Here’s the link: http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bill.xpd?tab=summary&bill=s110-1858



    for the CDC to overview current and expanding screening.

    key words(in bold) right there!! :evil:



    5milesmile wrote Actually, looking over a summary of the bill, it seems that all it really does is set up Federal funding and the creation of an advisory board for the CDC to overview current and expanding screening. Though, I could be wrong.

    Looking at who the original poster was in this instance, I felt it important to take the first post with a bit of a grain of salt. Glad someone else did as well. I wasn’t going to believe any of that nonsense until it was reported on by a legitimate news outlet. And the fact that it hasn’t been is a big red flag that there’s no conspiracy to create a giant DNA database of every newborn.

    Don’t buy the fear-mongering/hype, this bill doesn’t seem to do anything like what this thread bills it as.




    yep, your right, what was i thinking?

    social security was optional when it began, wonder if it resembles the bill as it was passed back then???

    i cant ever remember people in power abusing certain laws and wording.

    good call…..i guess the “and expanding screening” is just a type-o and they will not be gathering more……oh and btw there already is a database.

    Oppose illegal State government ownership of the blood, DNA and genetic test results of newborn citizens in Minnesota.

    In July 1997, solely by an executive decision of health officials-no law-the MN Department of Health began retaining the DNA-filled blood specimens of all newborn babies. The State now claims ownership rights to the DNA of more than 670,000 children (approx. 70,000 births/yr). In July 1986, MDH began cataloging the genetic test results of all Minnesota children. Approximately 1.4 million children are in the database


    Canada Takes DNA Database Lead


    12:20 p.m. Jul. 5, 2000 PDT

    OTTAWA — Canada unveiled on Wednesday what it said was the world’s most sophisticated DNA database, capable of identifying criminals through analysis of minute amounts of blood, semen, or skin cells.

    The DNA Data Bank will include samples of DNA — the unique building blocks of every living thing — from young offenders as well as adults who are convicted of serious crimes. It will also include DNA taken from crime scenes.

    DNA databases already exist in the United States, Germany, Britain, Norway, Finland, Belgium, and Denmark.

    Copyright © 2000 Wired Digital Inc., a Lycos Network site. All rights reserved.

    The United States and the Development of DNA Data Banks



    Since the viability of using DNA as an investigative tool was realised in the early 1990s, individual States began to implement measures to mandate for the circumstances in which DNA samples could be collected and retained. Differences in the respective legislative powers exist across the spectrum of States, although broadly speaking each initially required that serious sexual and violent offenders provide samples of DNA for storage.

    September 27, 2005

    The Beginnings of a U.S. Government DNA Database

    From the Washington Post:

    Suspects arrested or detained by federal authorities could be forced to provide samples of their DNA that would be recorded in a central database under a provision of a Senate bill to expand government collection of personal data.

    The controversial measure was approved by the Senate Judiciary Committee last week and is supported by the White House, but has not gone to the floor for a vote. It goes beyond current law, which allows federal authorities to collect and record samples of DNA only from those convicted of crimes. The data are stored in an FBI-maintained national registry that law enforcement officials use to aid investigations, by comparing DNA from criminals with evidence found at crime scenes.


    The provision, co-sponsored by Kyl and Sen. John Cornyn (R-Tex.), does not require the government to automatically remove the DNA data of people who are never convicted.

    bolded for truth



    here is a good read, important parts highlighted

    Feds to collect DNA from every person they arrest

    April 16, 2008 – 7:39pm


    Associated Press Writer

    WASHINGTON (AP) – The government plans to begin collecting DNA samples from anyone arrested(not convicted,but arrested) by a federal law enforcement agency _ a move intended to prevent violent crime but which also is raising concerns about the privacy of innocent people.

    Using authority granted by Congress, the government also plans to collect DNA samples from foreigners who are detained, whether they have been charged or not. The DNA would be collected through a cheek swab, Justice Department spokesman Erik Ablin said Wednesday. That would be a departure from current practice, which limits DNA collection to convicted felons.

    Expanding the DNA database, known as CODIS, raises civil liberties questions about the potential for misuse of such personal information, such as family ties and genetic conditions.

    Ablin said the DNA collection would be subject to the same privacy laws applied to current DNA sampling. That means none of it would be used for identifying genetic traits, diseases or disorders.

    Congress gave the Justice Department the authority to expand DNA collection in two different laws passed in 2005 and 2006.

    There are dozens of federal law enforcement agencies, ranging from the FBI to the Library of Congress Police. The federal government estimates it makes about 140,000 arrests each year.

    Justice officials estimate the new collecting requirements would add DNA from an additional 1.2 million people to the database each year.

    Those who support the expanded collection believe that DNA sampling could get violent criminals off the streets and prevent them from committing more crimes.

    A Chicago study in 2005 found that 53 murders and rapes could have been prevented if a DNA sample had been collected upon arrest.

    “Many innocent lives could have been saved had the government began this kind of DNA sampling in the 1990s when the technology to do so first became available,” Sen. Jon Kyl, R-Ariz., said. Kyl sponsored the 2005 law that gave the Justice Department this authority.

    Thirteen states have similar laws: Alaska, Arizona, California, Kansas, Louisiana, Maryland, Minnesota, New Mexico, North Dakota, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas and Virginia.

    The new regulation would mean that the federal government could store DNA samples of people who are not guilty of any crime, said Jesselyn McCurdy, legislative counsel for the American Civil Liberties Union.

    “Now innocent people’s DNA will be put into this huge CODIS database, and it will be very difficult for them to get it out if they are not charged or convicted of a crime,” McCurdy said.

    If a person is arrested but not convicted, he or she can ask the Justice Department to destroy the sample.

    The Homeland Security Department _ the federal agency charged with policing immigration _ supports the new rule.

    “DNA is a proven law-enforcement tool,” DHS spokesman Russ Knocke said.

    The rule would not allow for DNA samples to be collected from immigrants who are legally in the United States or those being processed for admission, unless the person was arrested.

    The proposed rule is being published in the Federal Register. That will be followed by a 30-day comment period.

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    this is a horrible thing



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