Skip to comments.Soul Man
Posted on 01/07/2006 4:23:20 AM PST by yoe
WASHINGTON--Leon Kass is willing--reluctantly willing--to indulge a request. I have asked him to refresh our interview of several weeks ago by reflecting on the case of Hwang Woo Suk, the internationally celebrated South Korean researcher who recently admitted to fabricating cloned stem cells. Dr. Kass thinks that a decennial White House conference on aging might make for an equally timely news peg. Health and longevity; dementia and death; euthanasia and living wills; performance enhancement and life-prolonging genetic manipulations--these are the subjects that really engage the mind of this 66-year-old physician and ethicist (and former philosophy professor of mine). As for embryos, stem cells, cloning and the uses and abuses thereof, they are "not the most profound of subjects," he told me over a pot of tea in the kitchen of his Washington apartment. "The embryo question is really about the means. The real question has to do with the ends to which we put this."
[snip] Then again, who knows, really, whether matters will all shake out so badly in the coming biomedical revolution. Historically, America's default option in the face of sharp social and technological shifts has been to accept, adapt and improve, partly in the recognition that it is usually folly to resist, and partly from the experience that the ills such shifts bring are usually less bad than the ills they overcame.
(Excerpt) Read more at opinionjournal.com ...