Ethicists or moral philosophers need to get involved in controversial scientific issues. Without their meddling there would be mass injustice. Ethics should always be involved in the sciences for the beneficence of everyone. Without strict ethical codes we had the Milgram Experiment and the Stanford Prison Experiment or the monster study.
It seems clear that we are loathe to make the moral constraints of others into general rules when we do not ourselves accept them, but on the other hand, we rush to put forth our own moral constraints as candidate general rules. I do not know the best answer to this.
I do think however, that a proper respect for one another as fellow beings can do much to stop us from erecting societal barriers between us, and can contribute greatly to peace and stability in our societies. This would include a sensitivity to the moral considerations of our fellow-beings, and an unwillingness to wantonly cross those sorts of lines. In the end, I believe, peace and stability of societies becomes a foundation for lasting prosperity. And anything that undermines that stability, such as doing science in ways that get people polarized to their core, compromises that good foundation, even if the ends are noble and the rewards great.
Scientific progress is good, yet constraints of morality should still be applied to scientific endeavors. Spacecraft having to pass rigorous safety criteria, the illegalization of human vivisection, the demand to stop radiation leaks, lab safety procedures, etc. May all slow down the progress of science, yet for the benefit of the society. A world which valued scientific progress above the basic human rights to life is not a world I would want to live in.
If there is no moral barriers to science, then there should be no 'moral barriers' stopping the ALF from lighting the place up a bit. There is a reason why the mad scientist archetype exists, and that's because such a trait is something we simply don't want in scientists. Ethical science does matter for the tomorrow we build will be based around the tools we use from science to construct it. And personally, I would prefer a future that's not built from suffering. Otherwise we're very little different from the same savages who would throw a woman into a volcano; a sacrifice from the expense of an unwilling victim.
Furthermore on moral barriers, some of these scientists are nothing but sociopaths. Surgically attaching two dogs heads together. Draining three dogs of their blood to kill them and resurrect them with their minds completely destroyed. (Zombie dogs, as they were called) Constantly waking rats up and causing trauma to them until they die from stress. Testing chemical weapons on animals, testing on soldiers, constantly beating gay men with the butt of a rifle to see how many cracks it takes to cause brain damage, and of course we shouldn't ever forget what the Nazi's did to the Jews. Left unattended, science is absolutely horrifying. And sometimes the research doesn't even go to a noble cause either. Sometimes it's make up, sometimes it's to reinforce facts we actually already knew, (Who would have guessed that sleeping is good for you? Gasp! I would have never guessed. Thanks scientists for torturing those rats!) and sometimes, maybe the sad truth is there is simply no amount of good a horrible act can bring if it causes incredible suffering. Not that I'm naive enough to believe any of you people arguing in favor of abolishing moral barriers would ever have even the slightest grasp of what 'sacrifice' truly means.
Science needs moral barriers. Otherwise, I honestly hope the people arguing for it are the ones that have to pay the price for 'progress'. Suddenly then, I bet my 'morality' starts to matter. And this, if anything, I think goes to show what kind of world we truly deserve to live in. It's easy to rally for the suffering of others as long as it brings some good, just as long as you don't actually have to be the one wrongfully suffering.
Though, I wish to make my self absolutely clear on this: The moral barriers shouldn't be based around vague, abstract nonsense based on an ancient book condemning it. Moral barriers should be put in place to ensure we don't facilitate either suffering or the destruction of our home.
Putting barriers on science slows down scientific development. If there were no barriers, we would travelling other galaxies. Making colonies. There would not be hunger problem. The Codex of Science can only be dictated by scientists, not by people like Sarah Palin, or Mitt Romney (basically by idiots). And also Military cannot intervene to science.
I believe that we need to restrict the limits of what we can do. The Nazi party discovered amazing things, but at a great cost. We cannot allow ourselves to get ruthless and terrible like them, but we need more progress on science. Imagine the progress we could be making on scientific research fi we had more freedom. We could possibly even have Cancer cured by now