Letter: A duty to make life better
I said goodbye to an old friend recently. The woman whom we had driven many hours to see bore little resemblance to the vibrant intelligent friend of old. She tried to puzzle out how we had known each other. There was a momentary flicker when I m...
I said goodbye to an old friend recently. The woman whom we had driven many hours to see bore little resemblance to the vibrant intelligent friend of old. She tried to puzzle out how we had known each other. There was a momentary flicker when I mentioned our Christmas trip to Greece but it quickly faded as she tried to recall our names. She seemed afraid as we took her to her favorite restaurant -- a restaurant that she couldn't remember.
When President Bush issued his veto of stem cell research, he surrounded himself with some "snowflake children" in order to bolster his "moral" stance. A snowflake child is the result of a frozen embryo from a fertility clinic that was transferred to the womb of a woman who is not the biological mother. The embryos from fertility clinics do not have life; they have the potential for life but if they are not implanted, they will never have life. Even if they are implanted, they do not always bear fruit. Therefore the doctors make "extras". Once the couple has attained success, they no longer have need for the extras which in most cases are discarded. About 140 of these extra embryos have been "adopted" in contrast to the estimated 400,000 frozen embryos that will be disposed of.
As a non-scientist I do not know if the cure for Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, diabetes, cancer or spinal cord injury lies in adult stem cell, embryonic stem cell or cord blood stem cell research -- but I do know that our country should have a moral obligation to put our full resources into making life better for all citizens.
It is ironic that Bush's first veto refuses hope for suffering people. Those 400,000 frozen embryos which will be discarded have a lot of potential to cure disease and to save lives. It is sad that Rep. Mark Kennedy (R-MN) voted to sustain Bush's veto.
Barbara M. Edwards