Pellted With Stem Cell Stories


Four stories.

1. British scientists are pioneering a surgery which could restore sight to those blinded by the "dry" form of macular degeneration.

The treatment centres on human embryonic stem cells grown in a laboratory.

They hope to have this ready to go in 5 years. But get this:

Further evidence that the technique is likely to succeed comes from human operations. In these, the researchers restored vision using healthy cells taken from the corner of the patient's own eye. In some cases, the transplants were so successful that the patients were able to read, cycle and use a computer.

So, without killing any babies they can already restore your sight, but you have to wait 5 years to possibly have your sight restored by a dead baby? And the 5-year-wait procedure is the big news? Is this a joke? Shall we ask the reporter which procedure he'd choose for his grandmother? (Let's add "rub your eyes" along with put on some weight to our running list, shall we?)

2. Following Card. Pell's little reminder that respect for life is a non-negotiable for the Catholic faith, the lower house of the NSW Parliament voted to permit embryonic stem-cell use anyway --and by a larger than anticipated margin. Several Catholic MPs criticized Pell. Cabiner Minister Nathan Rees, himself Catholic, compared Pell to "that boofhead Hilaly" --referring to the Islamofascist sheik who compared women to raw meat. Much as I respect a man who uses "boofhead" in a speech, I don't think defending life from conception to natural death is quite the same as saying a woman without a burqa is asking for it. The story cites comments from several other Catholic MPs. Notable less for their nastiness than for their ignorance of their own faith. At least my beloved John Howard understands:

"I think it's exaggerating the situation to say that he purported to direct people," he said.
"Now the question of whether he should or should not have done that is entirely a matter for him and a matter for the Catholic Church.
"In the end church leaders, if they believe something, they are entitled to put their view."

It gets embarrassing when non-Catholics understand the prerogatives of the Church in the public square better than Catholics. Curtsy: Whispers

3. In our native land, the House is pretending to ban cloning while actually legalizing same. They do this by defining cloning as implanting a cloned embryo into a womb, which you must never, never do. But as long as the life you create isn't permitted to live, you'll be able to clone as many embryos as you want. Nancy Pelosi has mismanaged the bill terribly; it it weren't so serious I'd find this hilarious.

Update: unexpectedly, the bill failed, 213-204. Score one for us.

4. The U.S. House passed, 247-176, a move to weaken the Prez.' restrictions on federal funding of embryonic stem cell research --not enough to override the promised presidential veto.

As you read the last three stories, keep in mind the first.