A new DiY science kit, "Backyard Brains," teaches kids about neuroscience and biotech by helping them dissect cockroaches — and then use simple electronic components to control the bugs' brains and movements. Now PETA is protesting the kits, saying they are cruel.
According to Cindy Clayton in the Virginian Pilot:
PETA has written to the Michigan attorney general, the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs and the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, asking that they take "appropriate enforcement action for any violations that they may find" in the matter, according to the release.
The insects, the group says, have the ability to feel pain.
It's unclear whether these insects can feel pain. It's likely that the group is responding to the creepy idea of somebody controlling the cockroaches' brains with a mobile app. Yes, it's sounds scary, but this is actually something that scientists have been doing with these insects and others in the lab for a long time.