Tuesday, March 10, 2009 at 4:59 AM
Yesterday amidst considerable fanfare, President Obama signed an executive order making federal funds available to “vigorously support” new research using embryonic stem cells, which scientists argue hold the key to finding cures for everything from Parkinson’s disease to diabetes and paralysis.
Of course I have no idea how any of this is supposed to work. I just pray the scientists are right. Especially since I can recall all of the hope that attended similar arguments decades ago for federal funding into new research to find a vaccine to cure HIV/AIDS….
Let me hasten to note, however, that I have no regard for the moral qualms that purportedly compelled President Bush to restrict this funding. Nor for similar qualms that have conservative politicians now prophesying about Obama’s order leading to a “slippery slope” into human cloning and other forms of Nazi-style eugenics.
We will ensure that our government never opens the door to the use of cloning for human reproduction.
(President Obama trying in vain to assure his critics during his signing ceremony yesterday)
Because, frankly, if there was any moral consistency in their right-to-life protestations, conservatives would be every bit as zealous about abolishing the death penalty as they are about abolishing abortions. Not to mention the hypocrisy inherent in the juxtaposition of their moral crusade on behalf of fetuses with their moral aversion to crack babies and other disadvantaged children.
The repudiation [of President Bush's order] is of a policy but also of a way of life, that puts faith above science.
So, here’s to the brave new world President Obama ushered in yesterday with the stroke of his pen. I just hope scientists will be able to fulfill more of their medical promises than it appears Obama will be able to fulfill of his political promises….