Monday, March 09, 2009

Wrong and Unnecessary

Barack Obama's decision to allow federal funding of embryonic stem sell research is simply wrong. The procedure destroys a human embryo days after it has been conceived. If given the chance that embryo would grow into a baby and then a healthy individual like anyone else. There really could never be any justification for killing any human being even in the earliest stages of development for the sake of medical research. The thing that makes this change so audacious is that it is completely unnecessary. The normally left wing New York Times explains that scientists have already moved on from this technology finding more fruitful results from 'adult' stem cells which can be taken from a newborn baby's umbilical cord or from a fully grown patients' own bone marrow:

However, the president’s support of embryonic stem cell research comes at a time when many advances have been made with other sorts of stem cells. The Japanese biologist Shinya Yamanaka found in 2007 that adult cells could be reprogrammed to an embryonic state with surprising ease. This technology “may eventually eclipse the embryonic stem cell lines for therapeutic as well as diagnostics applications,” Dr. Kriegstein said. For researchers, reprogramming an adult cell can be much more convenient, and there have never been any restrictions on working with adult stem cells.

For therapy, far off as that is, treating patients with their own cells would avoid the problem of immune rejection. Members of Congress and advocates for fighting diseases have long spoken of human embryonic stem cell research as if it were a sure avenue to quick cures for intractable afflictions. Scientists have not publicly objected to such high-flown hopes, which have helped fuel new sources of grant money like the $3 billion initiative in California for stem cell research.

In private, however, many researchers have projected much more modest goals for embryonic stem cells. Their chief interest is to derive embryonic stem cell lines from patients with specific diseases, and by tracking the cells in the test tube to develop basic knowledge about how the disease develops.

Despite an F.D.A.-approved safety test of embryonic stem cells in spinal cord injury that the Geron Corporation began in January, many scientists believe that putting stem-cell-derived tissues into patients lies a long way off. Embryonic stem cells have their drawbacks. They cause tumors, and the adult cells derived from them may be rejected by the patient’s immune system. Furthermore, whatever disease process caused the patients’ tissue cells to die is likely to kill introduced cells as well. All these problems may be solvable, but so far none have been solved.

There is very little promise with this embryonic stem cells. Using those cells kills a newly conceived human being. There are tremendous and proven benefits using 'adult' stem cells.

Still, Obama turned on his characteristic charm and paraded around a bunch of jubilant activists including a paralyzed former football player who said, "Now I know I will walk again!" Gee sir, I am sorry for your condition, but try reading the article above. Your faith in this technology is totally misplaced.

Speaking of faith; Obama declared "as a person of faith, I believe we are called to care for each other and to work to ease human suffering." Give me a break. He wants to kill real human beings to potentially ease some undefined suffering. This type of moral equivalency makes me sick - especially when it's completely unfounded. This change in the law will not ease any human suffering any time soon.

I miss President Bush.


Joanne (True Blue) said...

Yeah, I was surprised about this too, since the new findings have made this unnecessary. I would say that Obama was simply pandering to his supporters. Pity.

Anonymous said...

An embryo is no more a human than a fertilized egg is a chicken, and in any event, a frozen embryo left over after the IVF procedure has as much chance of becoming a human as YOU have of sprouting wings and flying to the moon. If the donors of that genetic material want it back, by all means, give it back to them, but this bogus "every embryo is a human life" argument is ludicrous in the extreme.

KEvron said...

i'm all for it, not because of the advances in science it will provide, but simply because i hate fetuses to death. buncha fucking loafers. kill 'em all.


Patrick O'Neil said...

Joanne - yep. Nice Blog BTW

Anonymous - Ever crack open a fertilized bird egg? Often looks suspiciously like a bird, never looks like an unfertilized egg. Put in the right environment, every embryo can grow up into a unique individual. Facts are facts.

Kevron - LOL - Now I need to rethink my position. They have it pretty good just hanging out in their petri dishes all day!