- Obama won't sacrifice science for "ideology."
- When Conservatives express concerns about the ethical implications of government funded stem cell research, what they're really doing is letting ideology (and politics) interefere with scientific progress. This will not be tolerated. Conservatives' concerns will be ignored.
- When Obama expresses concerns about the ethical implications of stem cell research that leads to human cloning, he is simply demonstrating a committment to high ethical standards. But let's be as clear about this as possible: he is NOT letting IDEOLOGY interfere with scientific progress.
- Obama has somehow determined that "the majority of Americans - from across the political spectrum, and of all backgrounds and beliefs - have come to a consensus" that we should spend federal money to pursue human embryonic research. So proceed we will. But let's be as clear about this as possible: he is NOT letting POLITICS influence his science policy.
- Stem cell research that does not involve destroying, discarding, or harming a human embryo or fetus will recieve no support on Obama's watch. Obama reserves the right to give no explanation.
And finally, some interesting observations from a supporter of human embryonic stem cell research:
There are good reasons why society puts ethical boundaries on science. The Nuremberg code is the best-known example of this. Shocked by the horrors of Nazi science, the civilized world agreed that tests should never again be conducted on people who hadn't agreed to take part, and that test subjects should not be knowingly harmed.
Many scientists saw [Obama's lifting of Bush's funding ban] as a victory of science over ethical shackles.
During the Bush administration, "political ideology was used to define how science should be done," said Harvard Stem Cell Institute researcher Douglas Melton in a prepared statement.
John Kessler, director of the Northwestern University Stem Cell Institute called Bush's restrictions a "really, really unwelcome intrusion of politics into science."
Their comments were echoed by researchers around the world — and though understandable, it was wrong. [snip]
...Bush's restrictions on embryonic stem cell funding were legitimate. They represented a moral objection to the destruction of embryos by people who believe that life begins when sperm meets egg. It's not an objection shared by everyone. But characterizing conscientious objectors as anti-scientific is dangerous.