Friday, July 29, 2005

Frist caves on ESCR

My respect for Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist just dropped significantly. In a speech on the Senate floor warmly embraced by liberals, Frist announced that, with numerous qualifications and invocations of ethics, he will support the bill to fund the destruction of human embryos for research purposes.

It was a long speech, but he didn't get around to providing any rational justification for his position. Essentially, he 1) said he values the embryo because it is a unique human being with dignity and worth, and 2) also said that some of these unique human beings should be killed with federal money. And that's about it.

Such Democrat-esque nonsense leads me to believe that he's really caved in to political pressures on this issue (perhaps with presidential ambitions in mind). It's disgusting.

Here's a copy of his speech. Also, The New York Times report, and FRC's reaction.

As Tim Chapman reports, Sen. Tom Coburn, who has introduced alternative legislation that would promote non-destructive embryonic and/or pluripotent stem cell research, responded to Frist with this statement:

“The Castle-DeGette bill that is being praised in the Senate is full of hype and false promises. Private research dollars are not following destructive embryonic research because that research, unlike adult stem cell research, has not produced any tangible results. Not since ‘cold fusion’ has a scientific story received so much attention without the science to support the claims,” Dr. Coburn said.

"Promoting destructive embryonic stem cell research will also cause Congress to cross an ethical threshold from which it will not be able to return. If Congress decides that is ethical to conduct destructive research on human beings because ‘they will be thrown away anyway’ we will enter a brave new world in which all human life will be cheapened, and endangered,” Dr. Coburn said.

Update 2: MN Sen. Norm Coleman also supports ESCR. Meanwhile, Gary Bauer responds (to Frist), "The senator seems to have bought into the notion that some life can be sacrificed without its consent to benefit other life, and that is a slippery slope with deadly consequences."

And on a more humorous note, SrappleFace has this bit of satire. An excerpt:
"Although I am a conservative, my addiction drives me to steal money from average Americans and spend it on my pet projects," said Sen. Frist. "Perhaps government-owned scientists will be able to conquer this unfortunate condition by slicing up human embryos."

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