Saturday, July 30, 2005

Ban Christian Extremism

Finally, Bill Frist returns to medicine. After replacing Trent Lott as the Senate Majority Leader, Frist gradually aligned himself with the Christian extremists that push for revoking science and reading literally a book that begins with the premise of a geocentric universe. This past week, Frist returned to a speech he delivered in 2001, pushing for federal funding of embryonic stem cell research and in doing so, reconciled his policies with the Hippocratic oath.

While Frist lacks my admiration, I applaud him for taking a firm stance against a regressive administration's attempt to quash medical progress. Perhaps even more encouraging, Frist's action represents yet another instance of the hardline moving away from the Rapture Right. Remember, Frist attempted to offer a diagnosis of Terry Schiavo based on video tape shot 5 years prior to his viewing. Frist's actions engendered the fiasco we now know as the Terry Schiavo Circus and spawned a new breed of macabre Christian extremist.

The Republican base, formed by representatives of "corporate America", recognized that the Rapture Right alienated "mainstream America" with their shenanigans and sought to, ever so subtly, push the nuts back into the proverbial closet. The "mainstream" American sees hope for their ailing friend or family member in embryonic stem cell research; "coporate America" understands the economic opportunities the research could create for pharmaceutical companies. Either way, "mainstream America" and "corporate America", stand to gain.

After reading Frist's speech, only the most primitive Christian extremist would object to his proposal. He suggests funding for research, "...only on embryonic stem cells derived from blastocysts leftover from fertility therapy, which will not be implemented or adopted but instead are otherwise destined by the parents with absolute certainty to be discarded and destroyed." First states that research would only be allowed with "transparent and fully informed consent of the parents."


Blogger William said...

I have no problem with Corporate America undertaking privately funded stem cell research.

As long as the only reason people have for opposing it originates from religious value Congress has no right to ban it as that violaes the 1st amendment's non-establishment clause.

However, because the 1st amendment also guarantees freedom of religious exercise I do not think that stem cell research should be federally funded, as that would mean forcing millions of Americans to subsidize something their religious values prevent them from morally supporting.

I'm also irritated by all the people who accuse Bush of killing people by preventing further research. As promising as it is there is no guarantee it will cure anything. That's just insidious to label someone a murderer under those circumstances.

12:23 PM  

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