GUSET COLUMN
Further Proof of Bush's Betrayal On Embryonic Stem Cells

July-August 2002By Patrick Delaney

Patrick Delaney works for the American Life League in Stafford, Virginia. This column originally appeared in somewhat different form on washingtondispatch.com.

After some seven months of supposed consultation, deliberation, contemplation, and profound meditation, President George W. Bush announced last August that, yes, he believed it was morally acceptable to fund research that relied on the killing of little embryonic boys and girls for the harvesting of their stem cells. As the media groveled over his “Solomon-like” decision and a few major prolife organizations helped him orchestrate a “prolife” media spin, other groups were openly critical of his decision, and justly so.

These prolife groups, including the U.S. Catholic Conference of Bishops (USCCB), American Life League (ALL), and Human Life International, rightly called his decision “morally unacceptable” and a presidential “broken promise.” They pointed out that prior to August 2001 it would have been illegal for the National Institute of Health to provide any — that is, any — funding whatsoever for research that involved the killing of human embryos. With this fact in mind, it is clear that Bush’s policy actually broke down another barrier for the Culture of Death that will most likely lead to full funding for embryo harvesting in the future. As Bishop Joseph A. Fiorenza stated on behalf of the USCCB, “for the first time in history, [U.S. taxpayers] will support research that relies on the destruction of some defenseless human beings for the possible benefit to others.” He added that Bush’s policy limiting funds only for research on existing stem cell lines was untenable, because “researchers who want to pursue destructive embryo research and their allies in Congress have already rejected such limits…. The President’s policy may therefore prove to be as unworkable as it is morally wrong, ultimately serving only those whose goal is unlimited embryo research.”

With the recent nomination of Dr. Elias Zerhouni of the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine to head the National Institute of Health, Bush has taken another step that will ultimately only serve those who favor unlimited embryo research.

In March, ALL’s Judie Brown was the lone voice to note that Zerhouni “is a man who has pushed embryo destruction at Johns Hopkins University and will undoubtedly promote embryo killing on the federal level.” ALL pointed out that “Zerhouni was a driving force in establishing the Institute for Cell Engineering [at Johns Hopkins], which intends to advance embryonic stem cell research.”


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