Embryonic Stem Cell Standstill
For the last eight years, the Bush ban of federal funding of embryonic stem cell research has financially tied the hands of our nation's scientists ["Why Embryonic Stem Cells Are Obsolete," usnews.com]. Regardless of any private funds they may have had the luck to scrape together, the added knowledge of the Bush administration's hostility toward any patentable technology discovered under their watch only helped to hinder the possibility of obtaining more funding from the private sector. For what good would discovering a patentable breakthrough be if you knew you wouldn't receive a patent in a timely fashion or have that patent leaked to your competitors, only because it was funded using a method looked unfavorably upon by your government? I would argue that the federal ban on funding this technology should be overturned immediately, and any future possibility of hindrance by government agencies be legislated to make this technology safe from outside religious influences.
Comment by Jess Niedringhaus of NJ
The rush to use embryonic stem cells is another example of "when fools rush in." Directed research—that imposed by a government dictate—blocks innovation. Just as cloning hasn't met the feminists' dream of not needing males, embryonic stem cell therapy was based more upon optimism than insight and knowledge. Scientists needed to look for alternative methods of cell therapy and "necessity is the mother of invention." The greatest advances will always happen when people are allowed to explore but [are] monitored to limit jumping into a new approach too fast.
Comment by Louis H . R . Mueller of NY
I always suspected that there are groups of people, among them drug manufacturers, who don't want diseases to be cured. In my opinion, they will do anything to scare people to block and delay the development of new, natural cures. Just imagine what would happen to drug manufacturers and other entities whose income derives from the illnesses of mankind? You don't have to be a college graduate to figure out why they are against it. They use religion, politics, and other tactics to block any advance in relieving people of their dependency on drugs and current treatments which in the majority of cases don't cure and have many unwanted side effects. Genetic engineering, which was the hope of many in the last century, was practically banned with bad publicity and negative spinning. But as an optimist, I know that in the end the good and unselfish will prevail. I already see it happening.
Comment by Cari Tompkins of CA