Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Stem Stells and Orgees

There is a pretty big day coming next week. That's right - Wednesday marks the longest possible time before the next national election. What's not to like about that? The election is big news in the United States, Michigan, and the rest of the world. Based on the sheer quantity of press, Proposal 2 has received the most attention in Michigan. For the uninformed, you can read the entirety of Proposal 2 here. Let me just get this out of the way and say that I am INCREDIBLY FOR Proposal 2. That said, most of Michigan's pro-lifers are vehemently anti-Prop 2, and I could not be more dissatisfied with this viewpoint.

On top of that, the anti-Prop 2 campaign is one of the most flagrantly insane media campaigns of all time. For example, one specific commercial (that I am having trouble finding online) takes place in a human classroom, and then a cow raises it's hoof to answer a question in that class. First and foremost, having a cow that could take a class would be totally and freakingly awesome. How could anyone object to that? Second, the commercial leads the viewer to believe that Proposal 2 will open the floodgates to the most ridiculous and scary kind of genetic experimentation. The party line against Proposal 2 found in this article in The Free Press (which has come out for the proposal) is "...that the law could open the door to rampant, unregulated research that could never be checked". That is nuts, and explicitly rejected in the wording of the amendment.

The first statement of the amendment is as follows:

"(a) Nothing in this section shall alter Michigan’s current prohibition on human cloning." The second, and most damaging argument against the anti-Prop 2ers is also explicitly written in the amendment:

"(b) The human embryos were created for the purpose of fertility treatment and, with voluntary and informed consent, documented in writing, the person seeking fertility treatment chose to donate the embryos for research; and
i. the embryos were in excess of the clinical need of the person seeking the fertility treatment and would otherwise be discarded unless they are used for research; or
ii. the embryos were not suitable for implantation and would otherwise be discarded unless they are used for research."

So, explicitly, these embryos were volunteered for research in writing AND the embryos would absolutely otherwise be discarded or are not suitable for life creation.

On top of this, Michigan needs the opportunity to find cures to some of life's greatest ailments. I see no harm if these cures for the world also have a positive economic benefit on our state. The University of Michigan has a huge and beautiful building opened in the last five years (The Life Sciences Institute) entirely intended for this purpose, but it is handcuffed by current state regulations against embryonic research. Those who are against Proposal 2 I would guess are the kind of people who don't read Time Magazine (the liberal media), but here is an interesting article from four years ago breaking down the (non) life-qualities of stem cells.

The argument that allowing thing X might result in outrageous things W,Y, and Z has been used by the closed-minded and bigots for centuries. "We can't give women equal rights. What's next? BLACK PEOPLE????"


shazzerxo said...

I totally agree. Those pro-lifers need to not spout lies to uninformed voters!! I love reading your blog, Ken! Keep it up!

Ken said...

Why thank you shazzerxo, and thanks for leaving a comment! I do not know offhand who you are, though it is likely that we share some genes by virtue of the fact that I can simultaneously bore all of my readers when we are assembled for family dinner.

The funniest thing I read today was in a "second opinion" in The Free Press from some guy who has MS. In this article, the guy writes "...Voting no on Proposal 2...assures no human cloning." Well, yes, but so does Voting yes on proposal 2. He makes a few statements like this which are intentionally deceptive. Like this one I just made up "Eating 400 hot dogs means that you can still purchase milk at the grocery store."

Michael said...

I tend to be pro-life but I totally agreed with what you said. Very sensibly done and well-written.

By the way, I live nowhere near Michigan. Just thought I'd check your blog out.

I also read the one about Lost 'cause the four-toed foot statue caught my eye. Very clever stuff.

Dan A. said...

Prop. 2 needs to better their own ads, one tag line I saw was telling me to vote "as if lives depended on it". Which only made me laugh as it was hypothetically presented, eh?

...still got the good message across though.