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Here Come the NJ Clones
National Review Online ^ | 02.03.03 | Kathryn Jean Lopez

Posted on 02/03/2003 7:38:16 PM PST by Coleus

Here Come the Jersey Clones A devastating bill inches toward law.

The U.S. Congress remains practically agnostic on human cloning. Or so its inaction suggests. A bill sits in the House of Representatives waiting to face debate. A Senate bill sponsored by Senator Sam Brownback, too, waits in the wings. The president issued a challenge to the legislative branch to get moving during his State of the Union address last week, and to get moving toward a total prohibition on all human cloning — not some half-baked ban that would, in the end, let the clone creation march onward anyway; just so long as you kill them in the end.

Congress may not be acting at the moment, but New Jersey is. On Monday, the Garden State's assembly's health committee takes up a particularly bad bill. Worse than the bad federal laws being proposed, the New Jersey bill does not even prohibit the implantation of a "cloned" embryo. The New Jersey bill would allow for the development of a clone up to and past birth, so long as scientists do not plan on someone raising the child they've created. It's only okay to clone, in other words, so long as you plan to kill the clone, ultimately.

If S1909/A2840 becomes state law, New Jersey would have the disastrous distinction of being the first state to allow human cloning and fetal harvesting — the state would be allowing the manufacture of human beings to kill and use for their parts. As New Jersey Right to Life puts it, "This legislation opens a Pandora's box where human embryo and human fetal farms, human experimentation, and reproductive human cloning will be allowed to flourish."

All the while, however, the New Jersey bill, supported by "Superman," activist Christopher Reeve, claims to actually ban human cloning. This is possible because the bill defines cloning after birth.

The bill, in fact, reads like New Jersey lawmakers have taken on Princeton infanticide-defender Peter Singer as a consultant. The supposed ban reads: "A person who knowingly engages or assists, directly or indirectly, in the cloning of a human being is guilty of a crime of the first degree. As used in this act, 'cloning of a human being' means the replication of a human individual by cultivating a cell with genetic material through the egg, embryo, fetal and newborn stages into a new human individual" (emphasis added).

The New Jersey legislation "constitutes the moral madness of killing in the cause of healing — with a possible profit motive that would encourage the grisly practice," according to a letter sent to Governor Jim McGreevey by four members of the President's Council on Bioethics (Princeton's Robert P. George, Stanford's William Hurlbut, Georgetown's Alfonso Gomez-Lobo, and Gilbert C. Meilaender of Valparaiso University).

In their letter, the four bioethics-commission members explain:

The pending legislation expressly authorizes the creation of new human beings by cloning and, perhaps unintentionally, their cultivation from the zygote stage through the newborn stage for the purpose of harvesting what the bills themselves refer to as "cadaveric" fetal tissue. Please pause to consider whose cadaver the tissue is to be derived from. It is the cadaver of a distinct member of the species homo sapiens — a human being — who would be brought into being by cloning and, presumably, implanted and permitted to develop to the desired stage of physical maturation for the purpose of being killed for the harvesting of his or her tissues.

Gerard V. Bradley, a constitutional law professor at the University of Notre Dame has warned that the effects of the bill, if passed would be "breathtaking, unprecedented, and widely regarded as morally disastrous. These effects include, most notably, a commercial market in the body parts of fetuses, and the birth of an unlimited number of 'cloned' babies."

Wesley J. Smith, author of Culture of Death: The Assault of Medical Ethics in America tells NRO: "It is remarkable — and very telling — that in less then two years, we have gone from 'only' wanting to harvest the stem cells from embryos left over from IVF procedures, to a state senate passing legislation that would permit the implantation and gestation of cloned fetuses to the ninth month, before requiring their destruction. This is not just a slide down a slippery slope, it is a headfirst plunge into the abyss."

Someone in the New Jersey assembly ought to consider the consequences of their disingenuous, devastating dive before they get human life in too deep, too late for second thoughts. And Congress should take a message from the Garden State before the Brave New World renders Capitol Hill irrelevant.

TOPICS: Culture/Society; US: New Jersey
KEYWORDS: a2840; abortionlist; babyparts; clonaid; cloning; kathrynjeanlopez; newjersey; nj; njclones; njcloning; njrtl; prolife; s1909; scnt; sprint; weinberg
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To: Coleus
So hordes of clones are going to be marching out of New Jersey to...let's see now...get jobs at airline counters?
21 posted on 02/03/2003 9:18:39 PM PST by BlazingArizona
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To: TruthShallSetYouFree
McGreedy IS a Florio Clone. Tax me more. Government is starving. Teachers are starving. Laywers are starving.
The rest of you need to pony up some money, NOW!
22 posted on 02/03/2003 9:19:13 PM PST by kylaka
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To: BlazingArizona
Your acerbic wit notwithstanding, therapeutic cloning has nothing to do with marching. But you knew that, you just thought you'd be cute and clever where your understanding faultered.
23 posted on 02/03/2003 9:34:00 PM PST by MHGinTN (If you can read this, you've had life support from someone. Promote Life Support for others.)
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To: All
Here is the bill as it is written
24 posted on 02/03/2003 9:36:30 PM PST by Coleus (RU 486 Kills Babies)
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To: All
Lies About "Fetal" Stem Cell Research

Wesley Smith on Cloning:
25 posted on 02/03/2003 9:48:53 PM PST by Coleus (RU 486 Kills Babies)
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To: All
Fetal Stem cells are not needed.


AP Science Writer

Thursday, December 13, 2001; 2:29 PM

WASHINGTON –– Researchers have cured laboratory mice of sickle cell anemia, the inherited blood disorder that affects more than 70,000 Americans, in an experiment using stem cells, genes and a modified HIV virus.

Although the treatment is years away from being tested on humans, experts called the experiment a milestone.

"It corrected the sickling problem throughout the bodies of these mice," said Philippe Leboulch, a Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts Institute of Technology scientist who led the research team. "All of the mice were cured permanently."

Leboulch said additional study is needed before the technique can be tried on humans and the first clinical trial could come in about two years. A report on the study appears Friday in the journal Science.

The disease causes intense pain. It damages the liver, lungs and kidneys and can trigger stroke or infections. There is no cure in humans, and treatment consists of combatting the symptoms with antibiotics, blood transfusions and surgery. A drug, called hydroxyurea, helps control some symptoms in adults, but it has not been approved for children.

About 1.2 million Americans carry one sickle cell gene. They are said to have the sickle cell trait and are not affected by the disease. A person must inherit two sickle cell genes – one from each parent – to have the disease. A child born to two parents with the sickle cell trait has one chance in four of inheriting the disease.

Sickle cell anemia is most common in people of African heritage. It also is found in people of Greek, Indian and Italian origin and can occur in any race.

"Although much more research is needed before human application, this is a significant achievement that brings us closer to human gene therapy for what is a very serious genetic blood disorder," said Dr. Claude Lenfant, director of the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, one of the National Institutes of Health.

"This is an exciting result," said Dr. Michel Sadelain of the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York. "It is an important milestone in gene therapy."

Sadelain earlier achieved a similar success in mice by correcting the genetic flaw that causes thalassemia, a blood disorder related to sickle cell anemia.

In the new study, researchers used two types of mice that are bred to have a blood disease closely resembling the sickle cell anemia disease in humans.

They removed from the mice samples of the bone marrow, which makes blood, and then irradiated the mice to kill the remaining abnormal bone marrow.

The researchers mixed with the removed bone marrow a fragment of the HIV virus that had been manipulated to contain a normal red blood cell gene. The virus infected the bone marrow, carrying into the blood-making cells the normal red blood cell gene. The bone marrow was then reinjected into the mice.

Once in the animals, the genetically altered bone marrow cells produced normal red blood cells and corrected the sickling disease.

After 10 months, the mice were killed and their organs and blood examined.

Leboulch said there was no evidence of abnormal blood nor of the organ damage that is common with sickle cell anemia.

The gene therapy technique will not be tried in humans, said Leboulch, until the researchers learn how to safely neutralize the abnormal blood-making gene in patients. Radiation was used in the mouse experiment to kill the animal's bone marrow, but this would not be appropriate for human sickle cell disease patients, said Leboulch.

Greg Evans of the NHLBI said that research is under way to find a safe way to partially destroy the abnormal bone marrow in patients. The technique would then make room for the genetically corrected bone marrow.

Sadelain said that earlier studies showed that the genetically corrected bone marrow is ineffective against the blood disorder unless most of the abnormal bone marrow is neutralized.

Both sickle cell anemia and thalassemia are caused by a failure of a gene that helps to make hemoglobin, the protein in red blood cells that carries oxygen.

In thalassemia, the gene fails to make enough hemoglobin.

In sickle cell disease, the gene makes an abnormal hemoglobin that is sticky and stiff. Instead of the soft, doughnut-shaped, normal hemoglobin, the abnormal protein often forms into a distinctive sickle shape with a sharp point. The abnormal hemoglobin tends to clog small vessels, blocking the flow of blood. This starves tissues of oxygen and can cause damage throughout the body.

National Institutes of Health:

Sickle Cell Disease Association of America:

26 posted on 02/03/2003 10:03:06 PM PST by Coleus (RU 486 Kills Babies)
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The blastocyst is a lot of things, but 'undifferentiated' isn't one of them.

It contains two types of cells, but only one of those is destined to become part of the fetus -- the other will form the placenta. So at the blastocyst stage, all the cells which develop into the fetus are undifferentiated.

27 posted on 02/04/2003 5:43:59 AM PST by GovernmentShrinker
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To: GovernmentShrinker; MHGinTN

"Moreover, because therapeutic cloning requires the creation and disaggregation ex utero of blastocyst stage embryos, this technique raises complex ethical questions.""CRNT [cell replacement through nuclear transfer, aka therapeutic cloning] requires the deliberate creation and disaggregation of a human embryo."Robert P. Lanza, Arthur L. Caplan, Lee M. Silver, Jose B. Cibelli, Michael D. West, Ronald M. Green; "The ethical validity of using nuclear transfer in human transplantation"; The Journal of the American Medical Association284, 3175-3179; Dec 27, 2000.

Testimony of Edmund Pellegrino

My name is Edmund D. Pellegrino. I serve currently as professor of medicine and medical ethics at Georgetown University. In my 55 years in medicine, I have worked as a practicing clinician, research scientist, teacher, scholar in ethics and administrator. On the basis of all these experiences, I wish to oppose any relaxation of the current congressional ban on the production and use of living human embryos as the source of embryonic stem cells.

My objection is not directed against research involving multi-potential stem cells per se. The possibilities such cells offer for the replacement or repair of dead or dying cells in a variety of diseased organs is very great. Such research should be vigorously pursued and generously supported by federal and private funds.

My objection is grounded in the ethical impropriety of the deliberate production and destruction of living human embryos for the purpose of harvesting embryonic stem cells from the inner cell mass at the blastocyst stage of their early development. This extraction of the inner cell mass invariably results in the death of the embryo.

Effectively, this method ends the life of a new human being at its most vulnerable stage of existence. The human embryo is a member of the human species, the living result of the fusion of two living human cells. It is imprinted genetically as a unique member of the human species from the moment of conception. At that moment, it is set on its way to becoming a fully developed human adult. To interrupt this process is to violate the moral claim of a human being for protection at its most vulnerable stage. It is laudable to seek better ways to treat human disease and suffering.

But we are not free to use any means we choose. Even the good of others cannot justify the use of human embryos as mere means. The embryo's moral worth is not determined by its instrumental value for others. This would be to absolutize utility and to devalue the lives of all other classes of vulnerable human beings. The societal consequences are grave indeed.

These ethical objections cannot be over-ridden by the claim that the embryo is entitled to a "special respect" but that this respect can be violated if there is sufficient benefit for others. Respect is inherent in the moral status of what the human embryo is in fact. Respect is neither conferred nor removed by arbitrary social convention or convenience.

Nor can the ethical issues be side-stepped by calling the blastocyst a "pre-embryo." This is a euphemism of convenience with no ethical or biological justification. There is no arbitrary point at which we can logically confer or withdraw the moral claim of the embryo for protection of its life.

Moreover, there is genuine and increasing likelihood that the destruction of embryos is not necessary to obtain plutipotential stem cells. Recent work from very respectable scientific laboratories demonstrates the value of plutipotential stem cells from such sources as adult bone marrow (Johns Hopkins); adult human brain (University of Tennessee); neural stem cells (Harvard); muscle, thymus, T-cells, Epithelium stem cells (Tokyo); and autologous bone marrow cells. Use of cells from those sources would be morally defensible, since no living embryos are sacrificed. The effectiveness of these cells appears to equal that of cells obtained by destruction of living human embryos.

Pluripotential stem cells have enormous potential for human benefit, but, like all scientific research, research with these cells must be governed by ethical constraint. Lifting the Congressional ban is not justified logically; it is scientifically premature and unnecessary, and it is morally indefensible. If ethical constraint has any meaning, experiments involving production and destruction of living human embryos must not be done. Indeed, to be ethically sound the Congressional ban should be extended permanently to include privately supported as well as federally supported research involving the production and destruction of living human embryos.

Edmund D. Pellegrino, M.D.- Dr. Pellegrino is the John Carroll Professor of Medicine and Medical Ethics at Georgetown University. He is the former director of the Kennedy Institute of Ethics, Center for the Advanced Study of Ethics, and is the current director of the Center for Clinical Bioethics at Georgetown. He is the author of over 450 published items in medical science, philosophy, and ethics and is a member of numerous editorial boards. Dr. Pellegrino is a Master of the American College of Physicians, Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and Member of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences.

28 posted on 02/04/2003 7:08:28 AM PST by Remedy
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To: GovernmentShrinker
It contains two types of cells ... The two types of cells have their origin in the first cell of fecundation. The 'division of labor' for the cells the conceptus itself creates is evidence of earliest differentiation. The cells destined to build the pacental sac are formed by the zygote, not by the woman's body. The sticky coating on the surface of the implanting zygote is created by the zygote. The chemical messages which marshall the woman's uterine tissues to support the implanting zygote are sent by the newly conceived individual human life that is the conceptus/zygote. The amazing neutral divide the blastocyst creates, integrated in the palcental barrier, is an act of the blastocyst, not the woman's body.

The newly conceived individual human being is the director of all the form and function which hallmarks the lifetime of that individual. You've chosen to ignore the actual start of the individual continuum of this individual human life, in favor of characterizing the start of individuality as the point of cell differentiation for the embryonic body, yet the scientific facts proclaim that the differentiation begins at an earlier stage.

29 posted on 02/04/2003 9:22:26 AM PST by MHGinTN (If you can read this, you've had life support from someone. Promote Life Support for others.)
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Actually, I would "characterize the start of individuality" at some point long after initial cell differentiation. Those chemical signals sent out by blastocysts are the same for all non-defective blastocysts, and certainly don't qualify as acts of concious will. It is akin to a seed in the ground sending up a sprout in response to dampness and warmth -- strictly a series of automated chemical reactions.
30 posted on 02/04/2003 10:54:14 AM PST by GovernmentShrinker
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To: GovernmentShrinker
The will to survive is precisely what the earliest differentiation of cells indicates with the zygote/ blastocyst. I believe we would agree, that's not the same as making 'conscious' choices. If I understand your post, you would start the 'worthy of continued existence' for the individual human life at some point when consciousness may be proven. Is that correct?
31 posted on 02/04/2003 10:59:11 AM PST by MHGinTN (If you can read this, you've had life support from someone. Promote Life Support for others.)
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32 posted on 02/04/2003 8:33:35 PM PST by MHGinTN (If you can read this, you've had life support from someone. Promote Life Support for others.)
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To: GovernmentShrinker
Physician -- DO NO HARM. Ever - and espcially to those who have no voice in the whole process.
33 posted on 02/04/2003 8:45:59 PM PST by victim soul
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To: victim soul
34 posted on 02/05/2003 2:22:32 PM PST by MHGinTN (If you can read this, you've had life support from someone. Promote Life Support for others.)
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To: kylaka
I think he's worse than Florio.
35 posted on 02/05/2003 7:02:41 PM PST by Coleus (RU 486 Kills Babies)
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To: victim soul
I just hope the Assemblymen in NJ know that the whole country is watching them. Many pro-life organizations have included a note on their websites of what they have done so far.
36 posted on 02/05/2003 7:04:34 PM PST by Coleus (RU 486 Kills Babies)
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To: Coleus
Of course he's worse than Florio. He's got the media spinning for him, which Florio never had. McPerfect
cut a billion dollars from the budget the headlines
scream, and a thousand employees... hhisss goes CWA,
and the Teachers unions. The math tells a different story.
It's business as usual in the "peoples republic" of
New Jersey. Soak the taxpayers, and private industry
to make up the difference.
37 posted on 02/05/2003 9:18:16 PM PST by kylaka
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To: All
Robert Novak
February 5, 2003

Christopher Reeve Republicans

WASHINGTON -- While President Bush's call for a federal ban on human cloning will bring no immediate congressional action, the New Jersey Legislature is moving at breakneck speed toward legalization. What's more, the state's Republican legislators are not impeding this rush toward passage, ignoring admonitions from the White House.

When the cloning bill passed the state Senate (evenly divided between Democrats and Republicans) late last year, not a single GOP senator voted no. A committee of the Democratic-controlled state Assembly unanimously approved the bill Monday, Republicans abstaining. With the GOP offering no opposition, the full Assembly is expected to pass the bill as early as next Monday and send it to Democratic Gov. James McGreevey. When he signs it, New Jersey would become the only state where human cloning is expressly legal.

"If New Jersey passes this legislation," said Marie Tasy of the state's Right to Life organization, which has led the opposition, "the Raelians should feel comfortable calling New Jersey home and setting up cloning labs in the Garden State." The bizarre is familiar in Trenton, where conflict-of-interest is common among state legislators, and Republicans are divided and leaderless. GOP legislators protest that the issue is too complicated to understand. They are clear, however, in not wanting to get on the wrong side of the bill's most visible advocate, paralyzed actor Christopher Reeve.

Republican lawmakers may be confused by claims from the bill's sponsors that it actually bans human cloning. They should read the Jan. 27 letter to Gov. McGreevey by four members of the President's Council on Bioethics (Robert George of Princeton, Alfonso Gomez-Lobo of Georgetown, William Hurlbut of Stanford and Gilbert Meilaender of Valparaiso University). They contend the bill "expressly authorizes the creation of new human beings by cloning" and "threatens to make New Jersey a haven for unethical medical practices, including the macabre practice of human fetal farming."

This measure would permit "somatic cell nuclear transfer" (SCNT) -- a process used in making a human clone. While supporters argue this is not cloning, the President's Council disagrees -- unanimously. It reported last summer that "the product of 'SCNT' is not only an embryo; it is also a clone, genetically virtually identical to the individual that was the source of the transferred nucleus, hence the embryonic clone of the donor." Even the minority of the council that does not oppose research cloning agrees that SCNT amounts to human cloning.

When the bill came before the Senate Dec. 16, the vote was 25 to 0 -- all 20 Democrats and five Republicans voting aye, the remaining 15 Republicans abstaining. The five GOP supporters included Sen. Joseph Kyrillos, who doubles as state party chairman. Kyrillos was reported by colleagues to have said in a party caucus: "We can't vote against Christopher Reeve." ("I don't remember saying that," he told me.) Kyrillos is pro-choice, as is another of the Republican five, Sen. Bill Gormley, a failed 2000 candidate for the U.S. Senate.

In Trenton, other Republican supporters did not worry about conflict with their day jobs. Sen. Robert Singer, co-majority leader of the Senate, works for the Community-Kimball Medical Center. Richard Bagger was talked about for governor before he resigned from the Senate Jan. 15 to take a promotion at the Pfizer pharmaceutical firm, where he was already employed at the time of the cloning vote.

Beyond the distinctive mores of Trenton, pro-choice sentiments pervade the money raisers and contributors of the Republican Party. Kyrillos is a close associate of the militantly pro-choice Lewis Eisenberg of Rumson, N.J., who last week was re-elected national finance chairman of the Republican Party. Kyrillos and Eisenberg both serve on the Republican Leadership Council, which pursues the election of socially liberal Republicans.

New Jersey's prospective status as a haven for human cloning may be short-lived. Republican Sen. Sam Brownback of Kansas, principal sponsor of legislation to ban human cloning nationally, received assurances Tuesday from Majority Leader Bill Frist that the measure will be considered once it comes over from the House (something that did not happen in the Democratic-controlled Senate the last two years). That may well happen by early autumn -- not enough time for New Jersey to become the breeding center for a brave new world.
38 posted on 02/05/2003 10:29:52 PM PST by Coleus (RU 486 Kills Babies)
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To: TaRaRaBoomDeAyGoreLostToday!; Salvation

FREEP the NJ Assembly, namely Speaker Sires, from around the country and let them know the country is watching, NJ is poised to be the baby-killing, frankenstein-making capital of the World, isn't that wonderful?

NJ Residents can contact their own assemblymen and Speaker Sires.
Assembly Speaker Re:Catholic
Albio Sires (D)
West New York, NJ 07093
PHONE NUMBER: (201) 854-0900 E mail not listed, I'm guessing it's this.

Sponsored by:
Assemblyman NEIL M. COHEN
District 20 (Union)

Assemblyman JOHN F. MCKEON
District 27 (Essex)

Assemblyman MIMS HACKETT, JR.
District 27 (Essex)

Assemblywoman JOAN M. QUIGLEY
District 32 (Bergen and Hudson)

Co-Sponsored by:
Assemblyman Guear

Here is the bill as it is written:

Lies About "Fetal" Stem Cell Research

Wesley Smith on Cloning:

39 posted on 02/07/2003 10:56:04 AM PST by Coleus (RU 486 Kills Babies)
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To: All

Will Congress Ban Human Cloning?

Serious Questions Remain Unanswered

            Growing tension between powerful forces over whether to enact a ban on all human cloning boils down to two ways of considering the status of the human embryo.  There are those like President Bush and the vast majority of Americans who believe that a human embryo is a human being created by God in His image, through the sexual union of the male sperm and female egg.  Others, represented in Congress by Senators Arlen Specter (R-PA), Orrin Hatch (R-UT), Ted Kennedy D-MA), Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) and others, plus the pharmaceutical and biotech industries and many scientific groups who support human cloning and embryonic stem cell research, consider the human embryo engendered through assisted or a-sexual reproduction, to be a man-made object to be used and ultimately killed in scientific experiments.

             In his State of the Union address on January 28, 2003, President Bush said, “Because no human life should be started or ended as the object of an experiment, I ask you to set a high standard for humanity, and pass a law against all human cloning.”  The Weldon/Stupak Human Cloning Prohibition Act of 2003 to ban human cloning (H.R. 234) which passed the House in July 2001 and was stopped in the Senate by Sen. Tom Daschle (D-SD), has been reintroduced in the House with 103 co-sponsors.  Last week, the Brownback/Landrieu bill (S. 245), identical to the House version, was reintroduced in the Senate with 21 co-sponsors.   In contrast,  Senators Specter, Hatch, Feinstein and Kennedy have introduced a competing “clone and kill” bill (S. 303), which would allow the cloning of human embryos for experimentation, provided they are killed prior to 14 days of life.  Their bill would result in the immoral and unethical establishment of what President Bush called “human embryo farms.”

             In an opinion poll conducted by Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-TN) on his web site, the vast majority of respondents said they support a total ban on human embryo cloning.  92% support the Brownback-Weldon ban and 84% wish to ban the Specter-Hatch-Kennedy plan.  The fact that Senator Frist did a poll on an issue so fundamental has led some to speculate that his support for a total ban may be conditional, especially in light of his previously stated endorsement of human embryonic stem cell research.  The question arises: Does Senator Frist consider the human embryo to have an inviolable moral status?

     David Freddoso, in the 1/13/03 edition of Human Events pointed out that, according to the Dec. 24, 2002 Boston Globe, Senator Frist “met recently with officials from Advanced Cell Technology (ACT) – a Massachusetts-based research company that has already cloned human embryos.”  The meeting was, according to the Globe, arranged by wealthy ACT investors “friendly with Frist,” who were worried that the company’s cloning work would soon be outlawed.” 

             Mr. Fredosso’s report mentions the fact that last March, Frist expressed discomfort with a provision in the Weldon and Brownback bills that forbade importation into the United States of therapies produced from human clones.  Senator Brownback (R-KS) argued at that time that such a provision was necessary in order to prevent an easy end-run around the law, a reasonable assumption for someone who wants a cloning ban to stick.

However, the prohibition is missing from the new cloning ban bills, S. 245 and H.R. 234.  Its absence raises the concern that even if a ban were to be enacted, the U.S. biotech industry might still profit from the manufacture of human clones off-shore and the importation and sale of “products” made from them.  The importation provision should be restored to the bills immediately in order to discourage off-shore cloning efforts.

            In August of 2001, President Bush failed to stop stem cell experimentation on human embryos, instead allowing research to continue on cell lines derived from human embryos who had already been killed in privately funded research laboratories.  At the same time, he formed The President’s Council on Bioethics and appointed Dr. Leon Kass, M.D., Ph.D, a University of Chicago professor, as its chairman. Reportedly, it was Dr. Kass who advised the president to allow embryonic stem cell research to continue, albeit in a limited way.

            Linda K. Bevington, MA, Director of Research at The Center for Bioethics and Human Dignity, described a meeting she had with Dr. Kass and fellow bioethicist Dr. Kevin FitzGerald, Ph.D, S.J. in an article published in the Winter 2001 issue of Dignity.  She pointed out that Dr. Kass “stated in his Congressional testimony on June 20, 2001 that, “Anyone truly serious about preventing human reproductive cloning must seek to stop the process from the beginning, at the stage where the human somatic cell nucleus is introduced into the egg.”  In answer to her questions, Ms. Bevington says that, “Kass defended the necessity of a comprehensive ban by asserting that it would be the only ban that would effectively prevent ‘reproductive’ human cloning.” He also “asserted that a comprehensive cloning ban would place the burden of proof on cloning advocates to offer a convincing argument as to why we should endorse something that would transform humanity.”

             In October of 2002 at the American Enterprise Institute Book Forum featuring “Human Cloning and Human Dignity,” the report on human cloning by The President’s Council on Bioethics, Diana Schaub, associate professor of political science at Loyola College in Maryland and a participant in the forum made the following statement: “Cloning is an evil; and cloning for the purpose of research actually exacerbates the evil by countenancing the willful destruction of nascent human life.  Moreover, it proposes doing this on a mass scale, as an institutionalized and routinized undertaking to extract medical benefits for those who have greater power.  It is slavery plus abortion.”

             Dr. Kass, in his remarks, made this troubling comment:  “Yes, new lives would be created, and on a mass scale, purely to serve other people’s purposes.  And, yes, such innocent, nascent lives would be willfully exploited and destroyed.  But, I am not sufficiently confident about the ontological or moral status of a five-day-old embryo to speak in such abolitionist terms.”

             Today, even though the President and the vast majority of Americans demanding a ban on human cloning, Dr. Kass along with the majority on The President’s Council on Bioethics, is supporting a total ban on so-called “reproductive” cloning but only a four-year moratorium on “cloning for biomedical research.”  This is unacceptable.  All cloning is “reproductive.”  And it must be banned.

             Many European countries have already banned human cloning.  On February 3, 2003, the French Senate passed a comprehensive ban on human cloning as a “crime against the human species” and imposes a maximum penalty of 30 years in prison for transgressors.  It now goes to the Assembly and could become law by the end of June. 

         The United States must act, and quickly!  The state of New Jersey is poised to enact a law allowing the cloning of human embryos and their implantation as long as they are killed for bio-medical research prior to the “newborn” stage!  Stanford University announced in December that an anonymous donor had provided $12 million to establish a center devoted entirely to the study of human cloning and stem cell research.  California Governor Gray Davis recently signed a bill that encourages scientists to pursue methods that “generate” embryonic stem cells. (Washington Update, 12/13/02)

 The cloning ban bills with the importation prohibition restored should be passed and signed by the President without delay!  Please convey that message to your representatives in Congress. 202-224-3121.

Contact: Colleen Parro – Phone: 972/387-3830 – Fax: 972/387-3830 – E-Mail:
Please visit our web site at:

40 posted on 02/07/2003 11:00:19 AM PST by Coleus (RU 486 Kills Babies)
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