IN OPPOSITION OF MEDICAL RESEARCH AND TREATMENTS INVOLVING THE USE OF EMBRYONIC STEM CELLS

PAPER OUTLINE (8 Minute Presentation): PHI7550 Argumentative Paper AGAINST OUTLINE

PAPER: PHI7550 Argumentative Paper AGAINST FINAL

THESIS Using hESC for medical research and treatment should be opposed on the basis that it denies the dignity and rights of human beings by discriminating and murdering them for the benefit of others, as well as on the basis of morally acceptable and outperforming alternatives.

BACKGROUND: THE SCIENCE

Before we can engage in a discussion on the moral acceptability of hESCR, we will need to overview some entry-level terms regarding the science. Stem Cells are cells containing two defining characteristics: self-renewal and potency. Self-renewal means these cells are able to go through numerous cycles of mitotic cellular division and still maintain an undifferentiated state (which allows for further division). In addition to self-renewal, SC’s must exhibit potency, which is defined as the ability of a cell to differentiate, or specialized, into certain cell types. The degree of cell types determines the potency of SC’s. Four are noted: Totipotent (can differentiate into all cell types, embryonic & extra embryonic), Pluripotent (derived from Totipotent cells after initial cellular divisions, and can differentiate into all cells of the three germ layers), Multipotent (can differentiate into cells of its cellular family), and Unipotent (differentiate into same cell type, but self-renewal). In addition to understanding what a stem cell is, it is necessary to explain the basics of embryogenesis. Two main categories of stem cells exist: Embryonic (hESC) and Adult (ASC). Upon the fusion of genetic material from the oocyte egg and sperm (Fertilization), a 46 chromosome single-celled organism is created (zygote). This zygote then begins to experience cellular division, and forms a sphere of 16 totipotent cells (Cleavage). After 4-6 days, the Blastocyst is formed, which produces a ball with an outer layer of trophoblast cells, and an inner cell mass of Pluripotent cells. After 14 days from conception, the embryo implants into the mother’s uterus, and signals are sent to initiate genetic formation of the embryo’s basic forms as encoded in its genetic blueprint. The embryo then proceeds into a fetus, which proceeds into an infant, and so on. hESCR desires to extract the Pluripotent inner cell mass prior to its division into the three germ layers, and utilize it to create regenerative treatments by guiding the cellular differentiation.

In addition to hESCR, we should name two other important technological innovations. The first involves In Vitro fertilization (IVF). This involves a process whereas a female’s egg is fertilized with a man’s sperm in vitro, or in a dish outside of the mother’s fallopian tube. The fertilized egg is then inserted into the woman in hopes of implanting. The process uses many fertilized eggs, and the leftover are frozen. In addition to IVF, somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) is relevant to the issue of hESCR. This is the process of embryonic cloning, such as the cloned sheep Dolly, whereas an ovum is taken, removed of its nucleus (de-nucleated), and inserted with the nucleus of the somatic body with the desired genes. This fusing is then zapped into gear, and an embryo with the genetic material of the donor is formed into a clone. hESCR utilizes either donated embryos from the IVF process, or embryos created for therapeutic cloning via SCNT.

The issue in question is then whether either process, which attempts to extract the Pluripotent SC’s from the inner cellular mass (and destroys the embryo in the process), should be ethically opposed. It is the opinion of this paper that it should be firmly opposed.  For the sake of brevity, we will not address the issue of ASC’s, as they are not widely contested to. This paper will argue that (1) on the basis of the principle of the dignity of human life, as supplemented by the biological fact that humans begin at conception, and (2) on the basis of hESC’s as obsolete in comparison to ASC, that hESCR is to be firmly opposed as morally wrong.

HOOK: WHAT IS A HUMAN BEING?

Roberts George, distinguished Princeton professor of jurisprudence, had the following exchange:

I asked Dr. Weissman whether the chairman of the President’s Council, Dr. Leon Kass, who was presiding at the meeting, is as a matter of fact the same human being who, at an earlier stage of his development, was an adolescent and before that an infant. “Yes,” Dr. Weissman replied. ” And before that was he in the fetal stage of his development?” “Yes.” “And before that”–at this point Dr. Weissman was under no illusions about where this line of questioning was heading–“was he in the blastocyst stage?” “For sure.” “When we speak of ‘the blastocyst’ (or ‘the embryo’), then, we are referring not to a being or entity different or distinct from the ‘human being’; we are referring rather to a developmental stage?” “Right.”[1]

On the issue we are now to discuss, such questions become relevant when asked to ourselves. Are you the same organism that was drifting through your mother’s fallopian tubes to later implant in her uterus, proceed through birth, and continue through your various development up until the current present? Having this in mind as we discuss the principle of opposing hESCR becomes sobering and personal.

ON PRINCIPLE

First and foremost, the objection to utilizing research and treatment acquired from the destruction of human embryos may be grounded on firm established principles of humanity and observations of biological fact. It is without much controversy that I may lay down my initial premise: human beings are distinct, self-developing, self-integrating organisms of the Homo sapiens species. By this, I mean that by definition a human being is a unique member of the species of humanity, and exhibits or retains the capacity of features prominent to human beings: the ability to make moral judgments, the ability to utilize logic, and the ability to have self-awareness. Although these are traits of the organism known as humans, they are not necessary characteristics required of being a human being, for one may maintain their distinct humaneness on the basis that, as a member of such a species, they retain the nature whereas such a capacity is natural. One is no less human for sleeping because, while in slumber, he cannot exhibit self-awareness anymore more than a baby who, retaining the capacity of such, has yet to bring it into development. As such, we affirm the first principle that human beings are members of the same species, containing signs of life (cellular division, sentience, awareness), as well as the ability to be distinctive, self-developing, self-integrated organisms.

From this simple biological observation, we move to a moral principle: human beings are worthy of dignity and the right to life. This is affirmed in various sources, from a secular governmental acknowledgment in our constitution that calls for the protection of one’s pursuit of ‘life and liberty,’ to the more traditional biblical claims relevant to Christian audiences. The biblical principles regarding the dignity of human beings is well supported and historically embraced: (1) Men are made in the very image of God, and by merit of this imago dei precious to God, are worthy of respect and dignity as response to God’s very present image (Gn 9:6), (2) Life is affirmed as equally valuable in Old Testament Law, such as in Lex Talionis (Gn 1:27, 9:6), (3) The status of the fetus is recognized as a person by God, and he enters into relationship with them (Ps 139, Jer 1:5)[2], and (4) Murder is prohibited by God (Ex 20), and child sacrifice angers Him (Ps 106).[3]

One could go on a hermeneutical tangent regarding the passages and their resulting principles, but I find these so firmly established and widely accepted that I will allow them to stand on their own. It is quite uncommon to find individuals who argue that human beings are not worthy of life and dignity, and as such I am hardly being controversial. Where the objections really enter is when someone agrees with the above principles, as they apply to human persons. Individuals then seek to argue that human life in a simple biological form has not the right to life.  It is worthy of observing several of these claims, as the shifting of moral excuse on the basis of how one defines ‘persons’ becomes unworkably ambiguous when so many different ‘persons’ argue so many contradicting definitions of ‘personhood’. Perhaps peaking in popularity is ‘personhood’ as defined by the prestigious Princeton Bioethics professor, Peter Singer. For Singer, the permissibility of killing human life is found in whether there exists evidence of “rationality, autonomy, and self-consciousness.”[4] Besides this definition of ‘personhood,’ Michael Gazzaniga argued that, given modern medicine treats the death of a person as the death of the brain, a human must have brain activity to properly be a ‘living individual.’ Opposing this definition of personhood, Peters, Lebacqz, and Bennett argue that persons are observed much earlier. As they suggest in Sacred Cells?, “rudiments of the nervous system necessary for sentience, the adherence to the uterine wall is necessary for any future development, and the shutting off of the possibility of twinning,” make evident a natural measure of observing the fixed existence of an individual person on the basis of sentience, viability, and individuality.[5] In disagreement to both Gazzaniga and Peters, Roe v. Wade argues that personhood should be determined much later, and on the issue of the fetus’ viability outside the mother’s womb. Some argue even later, suggesting that a child’s birth and first breath should determine personhood (thus the vile slaughter that is late-term abortion). James Rachels proceeds even farther, suggesting that ‘personhood’ and the right to life is determined not by any biological event, but by biographical value (memories, goals, dreams), which justifies the killing of humans at any time in their biological lifespan. Others still have argued for societal factors, such as non-personhood as an issue associated with race, or ethnicity (Slavery & Nazism).

Upon observing but a sampling of the many ‘persons’ defining ‘personhood’ differently, it is near impossible to leave such an observation without the impression that it is wholly arbitrary. Not only is the field of definitions and choices such, but the actual definitions themselves come across as arbitrary (Who defines what is ‘biographically’ valuable? What happens when viability shifts in response to medical innovations, as is the case? Does the simple majority of society get to determine who is a person, and who is not?). It would seem we are left to pick one of our choosing, but hardly does that provide any moral advancement. Instead, something is noticeable regarding this field of choices and the traditional view we will explore and embrace: These various definitions of ‘persons’ presume accidental characteristics define personhood, and not the simple substance of the entity in question (human beings). It would seem a simple biological fact would make this issue most simple. Choosing between characteristics is wholly arbitrary, especially when characteristics such as self-awareness may be unused, such as while asleep, or undeveloped, such as with a child. Surely a baby cannot engage in the upper level reasoning and awareness of an adult, but that does not make him any less a person, than a man who is sleeping and thus forfeiting the usage of his awareness is any less a person. Such measuring would provide different degrees of equality, let alone still remain arbitrary.

Rather than characteristics, human beings are best defined as having capacities rooted in their nature. Whether in the womb, or at birth, or asleep, humans have a capacity of mental functions. Even those who are mentally retarded have a capacity of mental functions on the basis not of accidental characteristics, but their substance/entity as human organisms.  This rejection of arbitrary accidental characteristics in favor of capacity according to substance hints at a more objective way of determining ‘persons.’ As hinted earlier, a degree of person/body dualism permeates the various systems. With such arbitrary attempts to define ‘personhood,’ thinkers commit to the troublesome premise that persons and bodies are dualistic in nature. This should be rejected in favor of something more objective, whereas human beings are the substance ‘humanity’ that are unified rational-animal organisms.  Oxford University Philosopher John Finnish offers some crippling critiques on this person/body dualist assumption, arguing that it:

Suffers the fate of every account of our being, life, and activity which treats human person and human life, or conscious self and human organism, or acts of the human organism and acts of the person, as other and other. That fact is: to overlook, or render inexplicable, a unity which we know more intimately and thoroughly than any other unity in the world, indeed the very paradigm (for us) of substantial unity and identity through time. For this dualism renders inexplicable the unity (and continuity) in complexity, which one is aware of in each of one’s conscious acts… People–you and I and everybody else–are (whatever else we are) essentially human, physical organisms. The person that is writing these words is not an unseen consciousness somehow inhabiting the physical organism sitting at the word processor; I am, rather, a unified rational-animal organism. It is not that I–considered as something apart from the organism–have an organism; it is that I am a rational animal organism. Therefore, I–that is the human being, the person I am–came to be precisely when the animal organism I am came to be. I did not come to be first and then become a person later; nor will I cease being a person without ceasing to be (by dying).[6]

Given the arbitrary nature of the various attempts at defining and shifting ‘personhood,’ as well as the common sense troubles poised by assuming a person/body dualism contrary to the most intimate of our experiences, I argue that affirming simple biology is the most assured method of observing personhood. By this I mean simply what we find affirmed in nature: That you and I are essentially human, physical organisms. The ‘you’ listening to or reading this argument is the same organism that was in your mother’s arms at birth, and the same organism that implanted itself to your mother’s uterus. There is no more objective and biologically affirmed observation for what renders one a ‘human person’ than the clear substance of humanity, historical continuity of a single unique homo sapiens organism, and the unshakable reality that persons reading or listening to this are essentially the organism in which the listening occurs.

With the establishment of human beings as the essential organism in historical continuity with itself, we must then come to an additional observation widely accepted: It is morally wrong to murder human beings for the profit of others. Regardless of how one defines ‘human being,’ this seems a suitable enough premise to stand on its own as agreeable and in line with the premise that human beings are worthy of dignity and value. From these premises, we can also state that it is morally wrong to deny dignity to human beings on the basis of discrimination (age, gender, ethnicity, race, etc), especially when such is done to harm or kill them for the profit of others. Simple historical observations that are firmly recognized as immoral make the case: (1) Slavery, (2) Nazi Death Camps,[7] and (3) Black Men of Macon County and the injection of syphilis.[8]

From these moral premises that murder for profit and discrimination are wrong, we shall make an important statement of biological fact: Embryos are human beings in their first stage of development. To borrow from Langman’s Medical Embryology, “the development of a human being begins with fertilization, a process by which the spermatozoon from the male and the oocyte from the female unite to give rise to a new organism, the zygote.”[9] I say biological fact, for it is widely recognized in the world of medical science that upon conception, a zygote initiates the construction of a totally unique and new organism. It is neither just a spermatoid, or only an egg, but a new human organism at its earliest stage. This will be the same organism that is given birth to, the same organism that goes to college, and the same organism that will get married and create, via reproduction, more organisms! As Robert George clarifies,

“biology and human-embryology texts have for a long time been quite clear that a new human organism comes into existence at fertilization. That is, in human reproduction, when sperm joins ovum, these two individual cells cease to be, and their union generates a new and distinct organism. This organism is a whole, though in the beginning developmentally immature, member of the human species. Readers need not take our word for this: They can consult any of the standard human-embryology texts, such as Moore and Persaud’s The Developing Human, Larsen’s Human Embryology, Carlson’s Human Embryology & Developmental Biology, and O’Rahilly and Mueller’s Human Embryology & Teratology.[10]

On such grounds, we must now also recognize that hESCR requires the death of a Human Being (Embryo) for the medical profit of others. This is a simple and factual biological observation. The embryo is destroyed while the inner cell mass is removed for its Pluripotent cells. Surely one could argue that although a human being is killed, it is not necessarily a human person. This we have already rejected on the grounds of its arbitrary nature, and the difficulties of person/body dualism. One can simply affirm the fact that the embryo is the same organism you currently are, yet in its initial developmental stage. To have killed such an organism is to have directly killed the organism that you are, regardless of how you wish to define when you truly became a ‘person.’ You wouldn’t be able to stand here and define ‘personhood’ if you, as an embryo, were killed.

In addition to requiring the death of the human being in the embryonic state, hESCR discriminates against the Human Being (Embryo) on the basis of age, size, stage of development, or dependency. We’ve already acknowledged the wrongness of enslaving others on the discrimination of race, or the murder of some on the basis of Jewish ethnicity. It would then logically follow that discriminating on the basis of age (initial stages of a human organism), size (tiny cellular mass), stage of development (embryo vs. fetus vs. infant vs. child vs. teen vs. adult vs. senior), or dependency (fetus dependent on the mother for nutrition versus an infant post-birth dependent on the mother for nutrition), would equally be morally detestable. It does not justify the harvesting and murdering of humans simply because one is smaller, younger, or more dependent than another. As such, we must acknowledge that hESCR, especially as justified on the grounds of ambiguous arguments of ‘personhood,’ truly discriminate against human beings. At the least, human beings in their primary stage of development deserve a minimal amount of respect, and there can be no more minimal degree than not to murder and harvest them for others.

Therefore, we conclude that on principle, hESCR is morally wrong for it murders and discriminates against Human Beings on the basis of ambiguous characteristics (age, size, dependency), for the benefit of others. As we would reject any argument favoring the harvesting of Jews or blacks for the advancement of whites or Germans, so should we take the next logical and morally significant step of accepting the biological truth that human organisms at such stages of young development should not be discriminated against on other such ambiguous grounds.

1.     Human beings are distinct, self-developing, self-integrating organisms of the Homo Sapiens species.

2.     Human beings are worthy of dignity and the right to life.

3.     It is morally wrong to murder human beings for the profit of others.

4.     It is morally wrong to deny dignity to human beings on the basis of discrimination (age, gender, ethnicity, race, etc.), especially by harming and/or killing them for the profit of others.

5.     Embryos are human beings in their first state of development as organisms.

6.     hESCR requires the death of a Human Being (Embryo) for the profit of others.

7.     hESCR discriminates against a Human Being (Embryo) on the basis of age, size, stage of development, or dependency.

8.     Therefore, hESCR is morally wrong, for it murders and discriminates against human beings for the profit of others.

ON PRACTICALITY

Even if one cares to ignore the principle in violation, and instead adhere to more ambiguous grounds in their favor, the argument on principle makes a solid conviction: arguments on ‘personhood’ come across as ambiguous, versus the objective scientific observation that an embryo is the same distinct organism in historical continuity with itself. If anything, this may shed some issues of doubt on how one defines a ‘person.’ This is increased ever more, when one realizes what is it stake: innocent human beings. If someone has submitted to the wrong definition of ‘person,’ and surely many do given the lack of agreement among those who affirm the necessity of some characteristic to determine personhood (viability vs. sentience vs. individuality vs. brain activity), they may not only be supporting, but participating in large scale murder and harvest of human beings. Such an observation is so horrifying and dreadful, that it sobers one towards the ramifications of their subjective definitions. The murdering and harvesting of human beings for parts makes slavery seem a bit pale.

The morally safest bet is to simply acknowledge that, given no universal scientific proof of ‘personhood,’ and no universal agreement in ethics, one is most rational to side with the scientific fact of embryos as human beings. Doing such merely observes the reality that you are the same self-developing organism that was created anew upon conception. It also does not wager the murder and harvesting of countless masses of human beings on ambiguous grounds.

With such doubt hinted, and the enormity and moral significance of such a wager, there is a final reality to the issue that renders the practicality of holding to such a view ‘obsolete’. This argument stems from the lack of needing hESCR, especially given its clear moral questionability. An individual can very much pursue the avenue of helping suffering individuals with stem cell treatments without wagering masses of human beings on unclear moral definitions of ‘personhood.’

As hinted in the argument On Principle, hESCR is morally questionable for it murders and discriminates against human beings on the basis of age, size, stage of development, or dependency. Even is someone disagrees with this premise, they would be hard-pressed to admit that a significant moral issue is not in question and contains significant ramifications. Building on the morally questionable nature of hESCR, certain factual observations render the pursuit of such research impractical and ‘obsolete.’

hESCR is (1) Far off, (2) Expensive and overpromising, (3) Lacks results, and (4) is potentially dangerous. (1) In 1998, James Thomson of the University of Wisconsin, successfully derived the first hESC culture. In a newswire of that year, he announced in regards to the find, that  “the development of human stem cells [are] a kind of biological holy grail… But the authors of the first study warn that such clinical applications are perhaps as much as a decade away.”[11] It is currently 2010, and there have yet to be any clinical applications of hESCs. In 2007, Thomson would later address a convention and move from ‘decade’ to ‘decades’. Lord Robert Winston, a British fertility expert, echoes these sentiments, where he states in a 2005 lecture, “I am not entirely convinced that embryonic stem cells will, in my lifetime, and possibly anybody’s lifetime for that matter, be holding quite the promise that we desperately hope they will.”[12] William Haseltine, an advocate for hESCR and a former CEO of the Human Genome Sciences, commented to the Agence France Presse in 2001 that, “the routine utilization of human embryonic stem cells for medicine is 20 to 30 years hence… The timeline to commercialization is so long that I simply would not invest.”[13]

Besides being quite far off, hESCR has proven to be overpromising and expensive. In regards to the financial burden, the state of California makes an excellent case study. Voters approved Proposition 71 in 2004, which created the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine, and allowed them to raise billions in bonds. However, “by 2009 the failure to produce human therapeutic benefits using the embryonic cells, whose derivation is ethically controversial, led CIRM to redeploy the majority of its funding to the ethically uncontroversial alternative of adult stem cell research, whose derivation does not depend on the destruction of human embryos.”[14] Not only has it been excessively expensive, and hardly worth the absent return, but it has been consistently overpromising. Regarding hESCR, John Edwards claimed that, “people like Christopher Reeve are going to walk again. Get up out of that wheelchair and walk again.”[15] Senator Arlen Specter has stated that they have the “capacity to regenerate disease cells in the human body and have the capacity to cure maladies of all sorts, including cancer, heart disease, Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, spinal cord.”[16] Unfortunately, regardless of the public promises and pronouncements by politicians such as Edwards and Specter, the cases of hESCR, even when greatly funded by governments such as California, have been overpromising and under delivering.

This lack of delivery is made most evident when compared to its more ethically accepted alternative of ASCs. In a 2007 speech, James Thomson was summarized by the AP as having argued “One day, some believe [ES] cells will become sources of brain tissue, muscle and bone marrow to replace diseased or injured body parts.” ASC has been doing this for years.[17] When we compare the current treatments/benefits of hESC to patients with the current treatments/benefits of ASC to patients we make a surprising discover: Current hESC benefits to patients: 0. Current ASC benefits to patients: treatments to over 73 diseases.[18] After various pauses in fear of the development of cancers, the FDA has just approved human trials for hESC treatment. ASC, on the other hand, has had over 2000 human clinical trials.[19]

In addition to the time, the expense, and the lack of results, hESCR is noticeably dangerous. According to the New England Journal of Medicine in 2001, side effects of experiments involving the insertion of fetal brain cells into brains of Parkinson’s patients involved them displaying uncontrollable movements (head jerking, chewing, arm flailing). In Neurology, 1996, a Parkinson’s patient in China had embryo stem cells transplanted into his brain. Upon his death and autopsy, it was found that the grafted cells had begun to grow in masses of hair, bone, and skin in the patient’s brain. Stem Cell Researcher have even called hESC “the Pandora’s box of stem cell research,” because they have a tendency to “explode into a cancerous mass after a stem cell transplant.”[20]

It should also be noted that Adult Stem Cells are not morally questionable, for it does not murder or discriminate against human beings. Clearly, it would mark a source of guilt-free stem cells, and would arguably be preferable. However, how has it performed? Regarding ASC, we find that, as contrasted with hESC, ASCR is (1) Current, (2) Consistently promising, (3) Has made significant contributions, and (4) is well tested. On their immediate usage, we find that bone marrow regeneration using ASC has been in usage since 1956.[21] Treatments are widely in use, and ASCR has had a consistent existence of newfound effective treatments and SC sources.

Recent innovations in ASC have proven significantly promising. One such example are “separate research reports of patients with spinal cord injury and multiple sclerosis benefiting from adult stem cell therapy.”[22] In addition, induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) have proven remarkably promising. “iPS cells are embryonic-like in that they can turn into any cell in the body—and so bypass the need for embryos or eggs. In late February, scientists reported on iPS cells that had been transformed into mature nerve cells.”[23]

A list of the significant treatments and contributions overshadow the morally questionable hESCR that much more. There are current ASC based treatments for Cancers, Auto-Immune Diseases, Cardiovascular diseases, ocular diseases, neural injuries, blood conditions, and others. Included among these are treatments for Brain cancer, breast cancer, juvenile diabetes, acute heart damage, corneal regeneration, spinal cord injury, Parkinson’s disease, stroke damage, sickle cell anemia, jawbone replacement, skull bone repair, and chronic liver failure.[24] This is merely a sample of the over 2,000 ASC human clinical trials. Is it then any wonder that the “Former National Institutes of Health director Dr. Bernadine Healy, once an ES cell research enthusiast,” now calls them “obsolete.”?[25]

Given the morally questionable nature of hESCR, as well as the problems associated with hESCR and the advantages and success of ASC, ASC renders hESC obsolete in moral acceptance and outperformance.

1.     hESCR is morally questionable for it potentially murders and discriminates against human beings on the basis of age, size, stage of development, or dependency.

2.     hESCR is (1) far off, (2) expensive and overpromising, (3) has lacked results, and (4) is potentially dangerous.

3.     ASC is not Morally Questionable, for it does not murder or discriminate against human beings.

4.     ASC, on the other hand, is (1) current, (2) consistently promising, (3) has made significant contributions, and (4) well tested.

5.     Therefore, ASC renders hESC morally and practically obsolete in regards to moral acceptability and outperformance.

CONCLUSION

On the combined effect of the argument On Principle, and the argument On Practicality, we are left with little to no reason to accept hESCR given its horrifying moral conclusions, its obsolete nature, and the ability of excellent morally acceptable alternatives. Using hESC for medical research and treatment should be opposed on the basis that it denies the dignity and rights of human beings by discriminating and murdering them for the benefit of others, as well as on the basis of morally acceptable and outperforming alternatives.


[2] “For you created my inmost being;
you knit me together in my mother’s womb.” (Ps 139:13)

[3] They shed innocent blood,
the blood of their sons and daughters,
whom they sacrificed to the idols of Canaan… Therefore the LORD was angry with his people,” (Ps 130:38, 40)

[4] Singer, Peter. “Taking Life: Humans,” http://www.utilitarian.net/singer/by/1993—-.htm

[5] Peters, Lebacqz, Bennett. Sacred Cells?: Why Christians Should Support Stem Cell Research. Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2008, p. 81.

[6] George, “At the Podium”, p. 1

[7] “In the absence of ethical restraint, one could arrange exactly the kind of surgical experience one sought, on exactly the appropriate kinds of cases at exactly the time one wanted. [And] if one felt . . . twinges of conscience, one could usually reassure oneself that, since all of these people were condemned to death in any case, one was not really harming them.” Gilbert Meilaender’s response: (from Gilbert Meilaender, “Spare Embryos,” The Weekly Standard, 2 September 2002, pp.25-27)

[8] “The fate of syphilitic blacks in Macon County was sealed regardless of whether an experiment went forward. Increasing the store of knowledge seemed the only way to profit from the suffering there.” Gilbert Meilaender’s response: (Meilaender, p. 25-27)

[9] Langman’s Medical Embryology, 7th ed., 1995

[10] George, “At the Podium”, p. 2

[11] AP Parkinsn Archives, “NEWS: Parent Cell Cultivation Could Help Disease Treatment,” https://listserv.utoronto.ca/cgi-bin/wa?A2=parkinsn%3bMaCgPw%3b19981106080715-0500a

[12] Winston, Robert. “Should We Trust the Scientists?” Gresham.ac.uk, http://www.gresham.ac.uk/printtranscript.asp?EventId=347

[13]Fumento, Michael. “The Dirty Secret of Embryonic Stem Cell Research.” Forbes, 2009. http://www.forbes.com/2009/07/15/stem-cells-research-cancer-opinions-contributors-embryonic-funding.html

[14] Donovan, Chuck. “California Squirms with CIRM: The Embryonic Stem Cell Boondoggle,” Heritage.org http://blog.heritage.org/2010/11/24/california-squirms-with-cirm-the-embryonic-stem-cell-boondoggle/

[15] Krauthammer, Charles. “An Edwards Outrage.” Washington Post, Octorber 15, 2004. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A34167-2004Oct14.html

[18] Prentice, D. “Adult Stem Cells” Appendix K in Monitoring Stem Cell Research: A Report of the President’s Council on Bioethics (Washington, DC: Government Printing Office, 2004), 309-346.

[19] “Clinical Trials: Stem Cells” U.S. National Institute of Health. http://www.clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/results?term=%22stem+cells%22

[20] Wesley Smith, “The Politics of Stem Cells,” The Weekly Standard, 26 March 2001, p.19

[22] Healy, Bernadine. “Why Embryonic Stem Cells are Obsolete,” U.S. News, March 4, 2009. http://health.usnews.com/health-news/blogs/heart-to-heart/2009/03/04/why-embryonic-stem-cells-are-obsolete.html

[23] Bernadine

[24] Prentice, D. “Adult Stem Cells” Appendix K in Monitoring Stem Cell Research: A Report of the President’s Council on Bioethics (Washington, DC: Government Printing Office, 2004), 309-346.

[25] Fumento

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