MSU and Lying

The ALS bucket of ice water challenge has raised millions for ALS research. You would have thought that would have been appreciated universally. But fundamentalist Christians have a problem – because they believe the research may include the use of embryonic stem cells.

I do not know how useful embryonic stem cells will prove in the cure for various diseases. But I do know that when a fundamentalist Christian group says the following they are just making stuff up:

“Embryonic stem-cell research has proven 0 percent effective in combating diseases like ALS and other neurological degenerative ailments.
Adult stem cells, which can be harvested from living humans without their being killed, have, on the other hand, proven vastly effective in making progress toward slowing down and in some cases seeing remission or reversal of degenerative defects.”

You might argue that adult stem cells are equally effective, but to contrast “0 percent effective” embryonic stem cells with “vastly effective” adult stem cells is to let your religious imperatives abscise your reason.

ALS bucket challenge_______________________________________________________

Fundamentalists characterize the use of embryonic stem cells in medical research as morally equivalent to murder. Is it? To divine the answer let’s consider murder. There are two elements to the act that are relevant. One is that the victim is conscious of being alive. And the other is that he had a future sensate life.

Embryonic stem cells come  from the inner cells of a blastocyst. The blastocyst itself is the product of in-vitro fertilization and – this is key – they are surplus to the needs of the donor.

There is no possibility of consciousness in embryonic cells. And they have no future life. They are deep frozen. They will never be implanted into a womb to grow into a person. To prohibit their use in medical development is a stupid waste – especially in light of the differences between the two types of stem cells.

If adult stem cells prove to be everything a medical researcher could hope for – great. But embryonic stem cells are pluripotent. They can become any cell in the body. Logic demands that they have significantly more potential than the adult type.

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