Stem Cell Research -- It's not just about stem cells

Hambydammit
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Stem Cell Research -- It's not just about stem cells

In the new era promised by President Obama, we will not mix science and politics.  By lifting the federal ban on stem cell research, Obama sent a powerful message to his supporters.  Naturally, any message that comes from Washington has lots of asterisks, and my own state is seeing the results of one of them. 

READ THE FULL ARTICLE HERE

Quote:
But the stem cell battle is not just a high-profile clash of values. The dispute provides a sharp focus on how science may help reshape America. Several states have set aside billions of dollars to support stem cell research, and the new federal money Obama is promising will generally flow to those areas. That means states supporting stem cell research will experience an economic windfall while attracting highly educated technology workers who tend to vote Democratic. The more conservative states restricting stem cell research will attract fewer funds and fewer socially liberal voters. In short, a state's stem cell policy will influence electoral results and help determine whether a state turns red or blue.

Quote:
In Georgia, a bill under consideration would put limits on both stem cell research and in vitro fertility clinic practices. "A person is a person no matter how small," says Dan Becker, president of Georgia Right to Life. "There is a paradigm shift going on, a shift toward personhood. You're going to see more states adopt that strategy." Indeed, bills in Texas and Mississippi would bar state funding for embryonic stem cell research. Arizona is among the states already featuring similar laws.

But Georgia best exemplifies the political and economic issues at stake. The state "is a prime example of the legislative revolt as a result of Obama's executive order," says Patrick Kelly, director of state government relations at Bio, an umbrella group representing biotechnology firms.

Georgia may be red on electoral maps, but in November, Obama lost to McCain there by a mere 5 points -- the best showing by any Democratic presidential candidate, apart from Southerners Bill Clinton and Jimmy Carter, since 1960. Democratic challenger Jim Martin forced incumbent Republican U.S. Sen. Saxby Chambliss to a runoff with a 3-point loss, although Chambliss' subsequent 15-point victory shows that a real gap still exists.

The main point here is that this is yet another example of how theist morality is not just about personal religion.  Not only does this refusal to go along with the non-religious program hurt everyone by stifling research, it's also having a major economic impact now:

Quote:
Texas-based journalist Bill Bishop, coauthor of "The Big Sort," a book about the social polarization of America, has discussed the problem of social stigmatization with Houston-area scientists. "They were saying, 'I don't want to live some place where I'm considered immoral,'" Bishop says. "They pick up these signals and they don't want to work in a setting where they will feel shunned." Likewise, Craig suggests, "If Georgia is singled out as a state restricting this research, it could give scientists pause about coming here."

I admit, if I was a microbiologist and had two job offers, I'd go to the state where I wasn't viewed as an immoral baby killer.  That's no small thing.  So we're talking about two major economic impacts during a horrible recession.  First, bio-firms and universities are not going to get the windfall of federal or state funding for the creation of new and lucrative jobs.  Second, we're not going to get the first rate scientists.  We're not going to have the big name papers in the journals.  We're not going to attract new investment capital from private entrepeneurs.

Theists need to keep their damnable morals out of my economics.  I'm sick and tired of it.

 

 

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...BUT WHAT ABOUT THE

...BUT WHAT ABOUT THE EMBRYOS??? I MEAN EACH AND EVERY ONE IS A POTENTIAL ASSHOLE JUST WAITING TO GROW UP, STUFF THEIR FACES WITH MCDONALDS, DRIVE AROUND A HUMMER AND BUY DISCOUNT MERCHANDISE FROM WAL-MART!!!

 

WE MUST PROTECT EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THESE PRECIOUS LITTLE POTENTIAL GEMS!!!

 

Sticking out tongue

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"Natasha has just come up to the window from the courtyard and opened it wider so that the air may enter more freely into my room. I can see the bright green strip of grass beneath the wall, and the clear blue sky above the wall, and sunlight everywhere. Life is beautiful. Let the future generations cleanse it of all evil, oppression and violence, and enjoy it to the full."

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Hambydammit wrote:Christians

Hambydammit wrote:

Christians need to keep their damnable morals out of my economics.  I'm sick and tired of it.

 

 

 

 

Fixed.

 

Cause this theist doesn't care what you do with stem cells.


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Hambydammit wrote:Theist need to keep their damnable morals -

-out of my economics.I'm sick and tired of it.   Right On !!!  When you think about our loss of a secular nation,which is in our Constitution.We should be absolutely free from religion.There are many in our society that live with the burden of religious beliefs,but there are also a few that pay no attention to religious bullshit such as NASA,The pentagon's War Industry,and a few other people and industry.Some days I get really pissed offed at the way religion has taken us backwards,and I'm ashamed that we as a society has failed to educate our children in critical thinking skills.  

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Ciarin wrote:Hambydammit

Ciarin wrote:

Hambydammit wrote:

Some Christians need to keep their damnable morals out of my economics.  I'm sick and tired of it.

 

 

 

 

Fixed.

 

Cause this theist doesn't care what you do with stem cells.

 

 

fixed again

 

 


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It doesn't matter if a

It doesn't matter if a person is small, big, or whatever. A person must consist of many different kinds of cells. We understand a person as a collection of skin cells, nerve cells, muscle cells, bone cells, and so on, but not stem cells. And the embryo which is harvested, consists only of stem cells. Therefore, if these theists would have any brain cells left, they would understand that stem cells are a raw material for making a person, not the person itself.

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Actually, you would be

Actually, you would be wrong on that account Luminon. Adults do have stem cells, they are part of how your body rebuilds itself constantly.

 

In an odd twist, adult stem cell research never had any controversy surrounding it and that has continued right through the Bush 43 years anywhere that anyone wanted to do the work. Further, the people who are doing that type of research think that given the resources, they might make it pay off bigger than embryonic stem cell research. After all, if you could be treated with your own stem cells that were already in your body, there would be next to no risk of tissue rejection.

 

It also bears noting that there is another very promising line of research that actually grew out of the mess that Bush made trying to make everyone happy and pretty much pissing off everyone one way or another. Researchers have (for about a year and a half now) been able to induce skin cells to form pluripotent stem cells in the laboratory. Since they would probably be recognized by your immune system the same as the multipotent adult stem cells that I mentioned above, they could one day make the whole conversation irrelevant on all sides.

 

Right now, nobody is ready to approach the FDA to start up a human trial just yet. The problem being that the cells have to be treated with oncogenes (cancer genes) to make them do the magic that they are able to do. The last that I have heard, a few labs have figured out how to put the oncogenes on plasmids that can potentially be removed from a cell line one it goes pluripotent but I have not heard if anyone has managed to extract the plasmids without destroying the newly made stem cells just yet.

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Answers in Gene Simmons

Answers in Gene Simmons wrote:

Actually, you would be wrong on that account Luminon. Adults do have stem cells, they are part of how your body rebuilds itself constantly.

Yes, I knew that. My point is, that we don't identify stem cells with a person. We say "oh, your skin is so smooth" or "look at him, he's got some big muscles" but we don't care about other people's stem cells. They don't serve to express our personality, or soul, as Christians might say. They support the body, but so does food, exercise and breathing. This is why there's no reason to identify them with people, it's only a building mechanism.

Btw, I suspect that amount of stem cells decreases with age. And yet, people have the same (or unequal) rights independently on amount of stem cells in their bodies. Anyway, these arguments probably won't work on the so-called pro-lifers. Fanatism means doubling their effort, once they forgot what do they strive for.

 

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Luminon wrote:It doesn't

Luminon wrote:

It doesn't matter if a person is small, big, or whatever. A person must consist of many different kinds of cells. We understand a person as a collection of skin cells, nerve cells, muscle cells, bone cells, and so on, but not stem cells. And the embryo which is harvested, consists only of stem cells. Therefore, if these theists would have any brain cells left, they would understand that stem cells are a raw material for making a person, not the person itself.

 

Why even discuss types of cells when talking about personhood? Personhood is an emergent property independent of the medium in which it emerges. I would say the only thing needed to qualify you for personhood is a conscious mind capable of reason and introspection, which can place value on its own life and the life of others, and understand, to some extent, themselves and the world around them. Embryos lack this emergent property and are hence not people. I would be quicker to classify a very smart computer or animal to be a person than I would to classify an embryo, human or not.


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Answers in Gene Simmons

Answers in Gene Simmons wrote:

In an odd twist, adult stem cell research never had any controversy surrounding it and that has continued right through the Bush 43 years anywhere that anyone wanted to do the work.

 

 

 

Apparently only 30% of people say embryonic stem cell research is immoral

 

 

 

Once again the atheist generalizations fall flat on it's face

 

 

 

 


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theotherguy wrote:Why even

theotherguy wrote:

Why even discuss types of cells when talking about personhood? Personhood is an emergent property independent of the medium in which it emerges. I would say the only thing needed to qualify you for personhood is a conscious mind capable of reason and introspection, which can place value on its own life and the life of others, and understand, to some extent, themselves and the world around them. Embryos lack this emergent property and are hence not people. I would be quicker to classify a very smart computer or animal to be a person than I would to classify an embryo, human or not.

Yes, I meant it from a perspective which I would use when talking to a fundie. They want to determine the personhood already in embryonic phase, when it's diffcult to test the conscious mind.
Your qualification is possible to test only much later, when you can communicate with the person somehow. But someone can be a person even earlier than you are able to communicate with him/her. Regression therapy proved to many people (including my dad) that a newborn child has extremely clear consciousness, perceiving everything around, but without control over the body. I admit, my perception of that question is based on esoteric research. Similar sources have determined the beginning of individual life of embryo on 4-5 weeks. The stem cells are taken in 4-5 days, so there's nothing wrong about it. Of course, individual life doesn't yet mean consciousness, abortion should be still possible after that, but not very recommended.


 

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:D

 

:3

 


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:o

Cpt_pineapple wrote:

Answers in Gene Simmons wrote:

In an odd twist, adult stem cell research never had any controversy surrounding it and that has continued right through the Bush 43 years anywhere that anyone wanted to do the work.

 

 

 

Apparently only 30% of people say embryonic stem cell research is immoral

 

 

Why is there anyone that thinks it is "immoral"?

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What i will never understand

What i will never understand about America is Bush only banned public funding of stem cell research not private sector stuff.

So let me get this right he thought stem cell research was mass murder but its ok for private labs to do it but not public funds.

In the UK we come up with our fair share of bad laws but nothing that illogical on even moral grounds


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ClockCat wrote: :3 Laughed

ClockCat wrote:

 

:3

 

Laughed loud enough to scare my dogs on that one! Smiling

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Cpt_pineapple wrote:Answers

Cpt_pineapple wrote:

Answers in Gene Simmons wrote:

In an odd twist, adult stem cell research never had any controversy surrounding it and that has continued right through the Bush 43 years anywhere that anyone wanted to do the work.

 

 

 

Apparently only 30% of people say embryonic stem cell research is immoral

 

 

 

Once again the atheist generalizations fall flat on it's face

 

 

 

 

Were christians polled or 'some' christians polled or a mix of many backgrounds. I wonder if people even understand or know what a stem cell is...

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 OK, pineapple.  I

 OK, pineapple.  I understand what you're getting at in that other thread now.  I hadn't read this one.

My answer in the other thread is pretty much what I think on the subject.  I don't really care what this poll says.  I care that stem cell research was banned, and that it's still effectively banned in my own state, despite popular opinion and presidential decree.

I agree with you that it's likely that a significant number of moderate theists are basically ok with stem cell research.  I agree with Renee's implication that most theists have no freaking idea what a stem cell is or why the research is important.

While we're talking about bias and perceptions about outgroup, have you considered that you might be creating strawmen about the actual opinions of atheists based on your own in-group bias?  (Are you the only person in your in-group?)  I don't think (correct me if I'm wrong, please) I've ever said that all (or nearly all) theists believe stem-cell research is wrong.  I don't think that really has much to do with the issue.  The issue from my point of view is that faith itself allows those who do oppose it to do so without having to live up to the same standards of reality as the rest of us.  The belief that faith is a virtue gives their position credibility when it should have none.

 

Atheism isn't a lot like religion at all. Unless by "religion" you mean "not religion". --Ciarin

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Quote:Apparently only 30% of

Quote:
Apparently only 30% of people say embryonic stem cell research is immoral

Whew! What a relief!

Only 90,000,000 people would call an important branch of medical research immoral. Sticking out tongue

 

(Just FYI, for comparison, there are only about 600,000 deaths in the United States due to cancer. I guess since the issue of resistance to stem cell research is essentially irrelevant, the issue of cancer and developing treatments for it must be stupendously superficial. Sticking out tongue )  

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mrjonno wrote:What i will

mrjonno wrote:

What i will never understand about America is Bush only banned public funding of stem cell research not private sector stuff.

So let me get this right he thought stem cell research was mass murder but its ok for private labs to do it but not public funds.

In the UK we come up with our fair share of bad laws but nothing that illogical on even moral grounds

The president can't make laws, but he can make decisions about funding through executive orders.  If a law banning stem cell research were to come through congress, he would have signed it, but such a bill never came to be.

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DamnDirtyApe wrote:mrjonno

DamnDirtyApe wrote:

mrjonno wrote:

What i will never understand about America is Bush only banned public funding of stem cell research not private sector stuff.

So let me get this right he thought stem cell research was mass murder but its ok for private labs to do it but not public funds.

In the UK we come up with our fair share of bad laws but nothing that illogical on even moral grounds

The president can't make laws, but he can make decisions about funding through executive orders.  If a law banning stem cell research were to come through congress, he would have signed it, but such a bill never came to be.

 

I sort of understand that but as a human being never mind a a president I would leave a country that was openly committing mass murder, its the same as the American abortion argument. Fundie thinks 'abortion is murder' but as long as a I have a decent plasma TV and lots of food all I will do is moan about it


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 Quote:I sort of understand

 

Quote:
I sort of understand that but as a human being never mind a a president I would leave a country that was openly committing mass murder, its the same as the American abortion argument.

I'd agree to extra taxes to pay for VISAs and plane tickets for all the fundies.  Really.  I would.

 

Atheism isn't a lot like religion at all. Unless by "religion" you mean "not religion". --Ciarin

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Hambydammit wrote:

"I'd agree to extra taxes to pay for VISAs and plane tickets for all the fundies.  Really.  I would."

 

Me: Really, Hamby, what other country would you inflict with these fundies?  Don't other nations have enough trouble already?

 

Conor


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:3

I hear the Co-operative Republic of Guyana is very open and accepting to religious groups, and supports all kinds of festivities as well as scenic locations for them to start over.

 

Theism is why we can't have nice things.