A Way Forward on Stem Cells

Washington Post, July 12, 2005.


The stem cell wars have heated up again, with the next skirmish due shortly on the Senate floor. Once again scientists and patients’ advocates, eager to garner maximum support for this promising field of research, are urging Congress to overturn the current limits on federal funding for embryonic stem cell research; a bill that would do so was passed by the House and is up for a vote in the Senate. Once again, pro-life advocates and their fellow travelers, dismayed at our increasingly utilitarian approach to nascent human life, oppose rewarding additional embryo destruction with further liberalization of federal funding for embryo research.

Both sides of this quarrel have something vital to defend, not only for themselves but for all of us. No decent society can afford to be callous to human suffering or indifferent to the need to seek cures. No decent society can afford to treat human life, at whatever stage of development, as a mere natural resource to be mined for the benefit of others.

Washington Post