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Old 05-10-2004, 12:56 PM   #1
Lurikeen
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Default Stem cell research.

Nancy Reagan plea on stem cells
Former US First Lady Nancy Reagan has urged the Bush administration to support embryonic stem cell research.

Mrs Reagan said too much time had been wasted already discussing the issue.

She is said to believe the research could lead to a cure for Alzheimer's disease, which has afflicted her husband, Ronald Reagan.

The Bush administration has blocked public funding of this type of research because of his party's ethical reservations about embryo research.

At a fundraising dinner for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation in Hollywood, Mrs Reagan said her husband was now in "a distant place where I can no longer reach him".

"I just don't see how we can turn our backs on this... We have lost so much time already. I just really can't bear to lose any more."

She said she believed stem cell research "may provide our scientists with many answers that for so long have been beyond our grasp".

It is thought to be the first time that Mrs Reagan has made a public speech on the issue, although her views have long been known.

Political debate

Mrs Reagan is the latest high-profile figure to criticise the Bush administration for its decision to limit funding for stem cell research.


Former Superman actor Christopher Reeve, left severely disabled following a riding accident, and actor Michael J. Fox, who is suffering from Parkinson's disease, have both criticised the Bush administration for blocking research which they believe could improve their conditions.
Currently federal funds are not available for this type of work.

Mr Bush has told scientists he will not release US taxpayers' money for the production or investigation of new lines because it involves the destruction of human embryos.

Correspondents say that with the Bush administration and anti-abortion groups strongly opposed to stem cell research, Mrs Reagan's comments add a powerful conservative Republican voice to the debate.

Story from BBC NEWS:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/pr/fr/-/2/h...as/3700015.stm
I found the following sentence very interesting: "Mr Bush has told scientists he will not release US taxpayers' money for the production or investigation of new lines because it involves the destruction of human embryos."

Is a human embryo a person?

Why should Bush (or anyone) be concerned about the destruction of human embryos when such destruction occurs naturally? Should we be blaming nature or God for the destruction of human embryos when it occurs in nature?

I don't think destroying a human embryo is unethical; especially in this case where the benefits far out-weigh the draw backs, if any.
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Old 05-10-2004, 01:23 PM   #2
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A delicious Catch-22 for the cons. Go against the Great Matriarch's wishes or keep up the right-wing "pro-life" dogma?

I loved reading that story earlier today
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Old 05-10-2004, 06:00 PM   #3
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An excellent example of how people can suddenly realize how wrong their politics are, when confronted with the consequences of those views. It's quite easy to say "Abortion is murder, stem cells are murder" and so on.... but when your teenage daughter gets pregnant, or your ailing spouse (in this case) is gripped by a debilitating disease...

I won't call it hypocrisy, which some liberals I know have said this is. Rather, it's an eye-opener. Our political ideals have repercussions in the real world, but until they affect us personally we don't really know what, when it comes down to it, our beliefs are.

It works both ways, of course. Many leftists are against the death penalty, but if their family gets murdered they'll want the fucker's guts for garters.

I wonder... if Bush were, a few years down the road, diagnosed with Alzheimers, would his views on stem-cell research change? In my opinion that is what should govern our political ideals. Can we live with the consequences? Can we say with certainty that, in all foresight, we will stick to our beliefs?

Or am I not making sense?
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Old 05-10-2004, 06:51 PM   #4
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There is also extensive research on the medicinal values of marijuana. where is Nancy Reagan on that? oh yeah her line was JUST SAY NO TO DRUGS!!!111
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Old 05-10-2004, 07:02 PM   #5
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I like stem cell research. Whats wrong with it anyways? Can justify it to religous freaks by telling them maybe god planned it out for us to use cause he is so smart and knew we'd grow beyond his grand design of evolution and need to self evolve or something. yea...
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Old 05-11-2004, 06:05 AM   #6
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Bush has blocked PUBLIC funding of this, not private funding. He is doing it because of his religious convictions. At least he is willing to stand up for them and not bind like a willow in the wind.

The beautiful thing about this country is, the maximum amount of time you will have to put up with him would be another four years, then there is the possibility of someone with a different view in the office and allowing it. Running him down for standing up for his views on this doesnt help anything. There is pleny of venture capital money out there to pursue this and I am sure these avenues are being pursued by money hungry capitalists as we write; aint this country great?
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Old 05-11-2004, 06:50 AM   #7
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I daresay you don't know how most biomedical research works Crimsonedge. Removing public funds from an area of research is an absolutely crippling blow to the field. I also wonder if you know how unwilling most venture capitalists are to sink money into a field which could be legislated into irrelevance by Bush or another conservative. It's not exactly a very safe bet.

Stem cell research needs top level support and public funds in order to live up to its very great potential.

I won't even bother to go into the abhorrent practice of trying to legislate religious values
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Old 05-11-2004, 07:06 AM   #8
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Is a human embryo a person?
Unfortunately to Bush it is. It also promotes abortions.

If they follow through with the stem cell research, I'm willing to bet that it will be the next miracle cure. Sort of like penicillin.

You know they can already cure heart disease with bone marrow stem cells?
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Old 05-11-2004, 07:09 AM   #9
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I'm not entirely sure where I stand on this, and that's my own fault. I really haven't researched it enough to make an informed decision.

I'm a little skittish when it comes to playing God in the area of genetics. I'm a firm believer in God's "great plan" for life, but you can bet I'd want someone to use modern medicine to save my life (in most cases).

I guess I'm a big "undecided" here.
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Old 05-11-2004, 07:13 AM   #10
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When people start letting each other die because they think that's what God would want when they have the power to prevent death and increase quality of life, then we've let the religious right go way too fucking far.
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Old 05-11-2004, 07:16 AM   #11
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/agree. I can't imagine condemning someone (or their loved ones) to living in a world without memory...or any of the other problems that this research might help provide relief for. I couldn't live with myself for that. I don't know how others can do it.
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Old 05-11-2004, 07:19 AM   #12
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It isn't playing god.

Here is the basic rundown;

They are taking cells that can change them-self and putting them in places that have broken cells. Bone marrow stem cells can change into almost anything except the more complex ones, IE nervous system. For the nervous system they need stem cells that can change into anything, and they are only found in embryo's. The doctors have been using embryos from abortions, which is why the research is being stunted from the messiah in the White House.

People are also scared because they believe that the doctors are growing their own embryos and killing them for the stem cells, which is a myth. There are plenty out there from mothers who are having abortions.
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Old 05-11-2004, 08:23 AM   #13
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Again this is a Federal funding limitiation, it doesnt extend to private funding or to State funding. In fact, many states are pushing funding. Also, it isnt a total ban on Federal funding, funding is allowed but limited to lines of research that were already in place.

Horm writes:

When people start letting each other die because they think that's what God would want when they have the power to prevent death and increase quality of life, then we've let the religious right go way too fucking far.


I think you are assuming too much, its research, not fact yet, maybe it slows things down maybe it doesnt but to say by not funding it you are killing people is a stretch.
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Old 05-11-2004, 08:36 AM   #14
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I have to wonder if the Stem Cells that can be collected from the an infants cord blood after it is born are the kind that have the higher ability to change or are they limited like the cells from bone marrow? When I was pregnant I considered harvesting my children's cord blood and having it stored but the costs turned out to be too high.

Women do have the option to have the cord blood harvested and then they can donate it. Does anyone know if that blood can be used in Stem Cell research?
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Old 05-11-2004, 09:05 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by Crimsonedge
Again this is a Federal funding limitiation, it doesnt extend to private funding or to State funding. In fact, many states are pushing funding. Also, it isnt a total ban on Federal funding, funding is allowed but limited to lines of research that were already in place.
Translation: it neuters researcher's ability to get adequate funding.

And state funded research? Are you kidding me? Miniscule funding at best and given the financial crunch most states are still in I don't think you'll see significant state-level funding of this sort of research anytime in the near future if ever.

Originally Posted by Crimsonedge
I think you are assuming too much, its research, not fact yet, maybe it slows things down maybe it doesnt but to say by not funding it you are killing people is a stretch.
Every reputable scientist who knows anything about this field would tell you that stem cell research is an area of almost unbounded promise and is still in its very early stages. By killing the funding you are killing the research and the research is all but guaranteed to make life-saving medical breakthroughs.

If you're willing to pass on those opportunities to appease your made up ideas about what your imaginary friend thinks then you are too far gone to reason with. I assume that when a stem-cell therapy is developed that could benefit you or your loved ones you'll pass due to your religious beliefs? You'd be willing to watch your child die rather than defy some people's interpretation of that 2000 year old book eh?

Read up: http://stemcells.nih.gov/infoCenter/stemCellBasics.asp
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Old 05-11-2004, 09:37 AM   #16
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Depends on what you mean by miniscule I suppose:

New Jersey governor plans to spend $6.5 million a year over the next 5 years, California hopes for $300 million a year

http://www.csmonitor.com/2004/0225/p01s03-usec.html

Will grant you that overall, that is small but its also promoting as many abortions as possible in many peoples views and its only going to get worse. Its a "race" now to be the leader in the field for States which to me sends the wrong message, I mean, should we save or improve someones life now or abort as many as possible in the future. I can see the problems people are having with this line of research. Imagine the stink PETA would be having if it were cats or dogs that needed aborting for the research.

Also, if you dont think it was a carefully thought out decession, read this:

http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/relea...0010809-2.html

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Old 05-11-2004, 05:05 PM   #17
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They are turning something useless, a aborted embryo that was thrown away, into something that will save someones life.

In other words it's either throw away the corpse or use it for research. I don't see how this is a hard decision.
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Old 05-11-2004, 05:52 PM   #18
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Stem cell research needs top level support and public funds in order to live up to its very great potential.
That's your opinion Hormadrune. Bush is pro-life. I would imagine that Bush feels like Federal funding of stem cell research would be condoning abortions. I'm not saying I agree or disagree with his decision, but I do respect the man for standing behind his beliefs and values.

Human embryo's don't have to be discarded. The Doctors that perform abortions can very well donate the embryo's for research. There is no law against that. Researchers can continue their research thru private funding. I guess thats where the libertarian side of me comes in. It's not the Governments place to spend tax payers dollars on research period. Maybe the public in favor of stem cell research should work harder to set up legit charities to take up donations for stem cell research.

I'm like Brigiid and not really sure where I stand on this issue. I believe if abortions are going to be done anyway, yes, they should take the embryo's for research, but I don't think it's the Governments place to fund it.
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Old 05-11-2004, 06:02 PM   #19
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FACT.
Stem cells replicate themselves. There is no need to release the ban.
There are 60-cells atm that are replicating themselves for research.

Imo, releasing the ban only gives fuel to the Pro-Abortion freeks.
To bad their mothers didn't abort them. Thats right, a woman in a
pro-abortion rally said her mother wasn't allowed to have an abortion.
Ironic.


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Old 05-11-2004, 06:11 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by Caelie123
I guess thats where the libertarian side of me comes in.
It's not the Governments place to spend tax payers dollars on research period.
Actually the Government has always given grants to fund research.
Some call it pork barrel spending because there's no immediate return on the
investment. The money is considered a loss. But only short term because of
the benifit of knowledge in our future.

Process of elimination. Nobody can say either way where Stem cell research
will lead. It's all hypothetical supposition at this point.

Nasa ring a bell? Microwave? Heart pumps? and more.



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Old 05-11-2004, 07:22 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by Caelie
That's your opinion Hormadrune.
Nope- that is fact. You cut federal funding of most any biomedical research area and you can kiss progress goodbye for the most part.

Originally Posted by Caelie
I'm not saying I agree or disagree with his decision, but I do respect the man for standing behind his beliefs and values.
I never understand this line of logic so many of you cons use. If he's wrong, then I couldn't care less that he's standing behind his beliefs and values. Do you respect Hitler or Stalin or Pol Pot for standing behind their beliefs and values?

Originally Posted by Caelie
It's not the Governments place to spend tax payers dollars on research period.
Yer not a big fan of modern medicine I guess?
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Old 05-11-2004, 09:52 PM   #22
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This particular topic does have religious connotations to it, which is what I think makes it such a sticky situation.

If one doesn't feel comfortable with the abortion issue, this certainly isn't going to be any easier to swallow. Remember that some in the pro-life crowd consider abortions to be murder, and aren't going to feel comfortable using the product of a "murder" for the sake of research. For GWB to be pro-life, I can see where he'd be conflicted on the issue, and I can respect that.

I think there's also a large potential for abuse. Just because it's currently using aborted embryos doesn't mean that someone wouldn't try to farm them at some point, especially if there were money involved. I do have a big problem with the farming of human lives for the purpose of killing/aborting them for research. To me, that makes human life appear expendable in a way that it shouldn't be.

Other areas of medical research don't require the death of a person (or potential person) in order to gain knowledge. Even in risky surgeries done later in life, a consenting adult has the option to accept/deny the procedure, and that's their right. If this sort of research could be done without the cost to human life, I'd be all for it. And yes, this would make it obvious that I consider a fetus to be a human life and therefore deserving of protection.
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Old 05-12-2004, 05:40 AM   #23
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The sad and funny thing is that many of you pro-lifers are all in favor of keeping some poor bastard alive on ventilators and feeding tubes for years if need be to preserve some bullshit perversion of the "sanctity of human life" idea. Yet, you won't support a promising world of research that could actually give that same person (in some cases) a chance at having a ***real*** life again.

And we consider ourselves the most advanced civilization? Amazing
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Old 05-12-2004, 06:38 AM   #24
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Originally Posted by Hormadrune
The sad and funny thing is that many of you pro-lifers are all in favor of keeping some poor bastard alive on ventilators and feeding tubes for years if need be to preserve some bullshit perversion of the "sanctity of human life" idea. Yet, you won't support a promising world of research that could actually give that same person (in some cases) a chance at having a ***real*** life again.

And we consider ourselves the most advanced civilization? Amazing
Damnit Horma...

/agree

Goddamnit, you did it again.

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Old 05-12-2004, 07:20 AM   #25
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and aren't going to feel comfortable using the product of a "murder" for the sake of research.
I wonder how many or the religious people are doners then? If you were dying from a bad liver, but found out that the hospital just got a liver you could use from someone who was just murdered. Would you take it?
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