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  1. #41  
    in my tradition of being a thread-crapper - here is my contribution (a reprise from Monty Python);

    There are Jews in the world, there are Buddhists,
    There are Hindus and Mormons and then,
    There are those that follow Mohammed,
    But I've never been one of them...

    I'm a Roman Catholic, and have been since the day I was born,
    And the one thing they say about Catholics,
    Is they'll take you as soon as you're warm...

    You don't have to be a six-footer,
    You don't have to have a great brain,
    You don't have to have any clothes on -
    You're a Catholic the moment dad came...

    because...

    Every sperm is sacred, every sperm is great,
    If a sperm is wasted, God gets quite irate.

    Every sperm is sacred, every sperm is great,
    If a sperm is wasted, God gets quite irate.

    Let the heathen spill theirs, on the dusty ground,
    God shall make them pay for each sperm that can't be found

    Every sperm is wanted, every sperm is good,
    Every sperm is needed in your neighbourhood.

    Hindu, Taoist, Mormon,
    Spill theirs just anywhere,
    But God loves those who treat their
    ***** with more care.

    Every sperm is sacred, every sperm is great,
    If a sperm is wasted,
    God gets quite irate.

    Every sperm is sacred,
    Every sperm is good,
    Every sperm is needed,
    In your neighbourhood.

    Every sperm is useful, every sperm is fine,
    God needs everybody's,
    Mine
    And mine
    And mine

    Let the Pagan spill theirs,
    O'er mountain, hill and plain,
    God shall strike them down for
    Each sperm that's spilt in vain.

    Every sperm is sacred, every sperm is good,
    Every sperm is needed in your neighbourhood.

    Every sperm is sacred, every sperm is great,
    If a sperm is wasted, God gets quite irate.
    Palm m505 -> Treo600 (GSM ATT) -> Treo650 (Cingular) -> BB8700g -> BB Pearl
    "The point of living and of being an optimist, is to be foolish enough to believe the best is yet to come."
  2. #42  
    Why some people would rather see all current unused IVF embryos die in storage or get thrown in the toilet instead of being used to find a way to stop human suffering and disease is totally beyond me.
  3.    #43  
    Quote Originally Posted by cellmatrix
    Why some people would rather see all current unused IVF embryos die in storage or get thrown in the toilet instead of being used to find a way to stop human suffering and disease is totally beyond me.
    I find that it is not that people are opposed to such a noble cause (a salvaging of value, as it were), as much as they don't want to make any concession because history shows that such intellectual boundaries rarely hold. As soon as a concession is made, that very concession is offered as the precedent for the next step, and the next, and the next.

    It is reasonable to have some dialogue and some agreement as to how far is too far before starting the journey. Because history shows that there is no turning back.

    IVF itself is a fine example. The intent was to assist people who were unable to have children on their own to still have the experience. Yet, the process results in the creation of countless human lives. Granted some consider these beings to be "potential humans" or "embryos" or "fetuses" or "specimen" or..... But the reality is, there are millions of lives that are being spawned then subsequently flushed or placed in suspended animation.

    It may seem like a stretch now, but the path from devaluing the unborn to devaluing the born is a short, steep, slippery one, that is paved with promises of progress.
  4. #44  
    A lot of the debate is about the difference between labeling something as "human being" or "potential to become a human being". Muddying the waters and calling everything a "human being" does not help matters - then we can start to slide to the extreme levels - after all is every sperm important then? Or since we each shed millions of skin cells everyday - all these could be potential human beings after all. So where would you draw the line?
    Palm m505 -> Treo600 (GSM ATT) -> Treo650 (Cingular) -> BB8700g -> BB Pearl
    "The point of living and of being an optimist, is to be foolish enough to believe the best is yet to come."
  5.    #45  
    Quote Originally Posted by chillig35
    A lot of the debate is about the difference between labeling something as "human being" or "potential to become a human being". Muddying the waters and calling everything a "human being" does not help matters - then we can start to slide to the extreme levels - after all is every sperm important then? Or since we each shed millions of skin cells everyday - all these could be potential human beings after all. So where would you draw the line?
    I know (and you know) I'm not caught up on all the scientific journals. But I am not aware of skin cells being used to generate human beings. Is that a fact?

    It feels like a far askew "for instance" that serves to more muddy the water. And, I mean no disrespect by that assessment.

    But, we are clear on how humans reproduce. The process is so well documented that we can predict with accuracy what will occur on a near daily basis. We can also quickly detect variation in the process, and make fairly accurate predictions as to the likely result of such variations. We can debate as to whether the 8-cell entity is rightfully called a human being, but we don't really question the normal path forward. Certainly, not all conceptions result in live birth. However, all live births do follow the same general process.

    So, when we start making distinctions based on extent of development, are we really identifying meaningful differences?

    In actuality, such differences only have significance in moral/ethical discussions such as this one.

    The woman who has an intended pregnancy only thinks of the activity inside her womb as the development and impending birth of her child. 2 cells? 4 cells? 8 cells? heartbeat? fingers? toes? eyes? To her, it is all "my baby."

    It is only when a woman wants to artificially terminate a pregnancy that we have discussions of gradiation.

    I suppose the procedure commonly referred to as "partial-birth abortion" while certainly an extreme best typifies the lunacy of the matter. Imagine making a distinction based on whether only the head of the child is exposed versus the entire body. That very same mother would be arrested if she fully delivered the child then placed it in a dumpster. But, if a medical professional killed the child while his/her feet were still in the womb, then placed the corpse it in a dumpster, it is somehow acceptable.

    That type of splitting hairs is what is beyond me.

  6. #46  
    right now skin cells from a dog were used to clone a puppy (in S Korea). It is only a matter of time before the same can be done with humans (though I do not condone it myself personally) - and it could conceivably be offered as an option for infertile couples.

    for a 8-cell clump fertilized in a petri-dish - there is no "normal path forward" without enormous technological intervention. The question is, should this 8-cell clump, which was a laboratory contrivance - be accorded the status of a human being? If yes, then is it ethical to destroy them? If not, then is it ok to experiment with them?
    Palm m505 -> Treo600 (GSM ATT) -> Treo650 (Cingular) -> BB8700g -> BB Pearl
    "The point of living and of being an optimist, is to be foolish enough to believe the best is yet to come."
  7. #47  
    Quote Originally Posted by shopharim
    I find that it is not that people are opposed to such a noble cause (a salvaging of value, as it were), as much as they don't want to make any concession because history shows that such intellectual boundaries rarely hold. As soon as a concession is made, that very concession is offered as the precedent for the next step, and the next, and the next.

    It is reasonable to have some dialogue and some agreement as to how far is too far before starting the journey. Because history shows that there is no turning back.

    IVF itself is a fine example. The intent was to assist people who were unable to have children on their own to still have the experience. Yet, the process results in the creation of countless human lives. Granted some consider these beings to be "potential humans" or "embryos" or "fetuses" or "specimen" or..... But the reality is, there are millions of lives that are being spawned then subsequently flushed or placed in suspended animation.

    It may seem like a stretch now, but the path from devaluing the unborn to devaluing the born is a short, steep, slippery one, that is paved with promises of progress.
    So you are arguing that it is more moral to throw the cells in the toilet than have them be used to help people?

    As I recall, we have had this discussion before, and I still dont get it.

    Maybe you are saying if there is an agreement to use just the embryos that are destined to die in storage currently, then it might be OK? That is the intellectual boundry you are nebulously referring to? If that is the case, no problem, the amount of cells in storage is huge compared to the number of scientists who actually study this area. Only a small fraction of available cells would be needed.
  8.    #48  
    Quote Originally Posted by chillig35
    right now skin cells from a dog were used to clone a puppy (in S Korea). It is only a matter of time before the same can be done with humans (though I do not condone it myself personally) - and it could conceivably be offered as an option for infertile couples.
    I do not condone it either. I would be interested to know why you do not.
    Quote Originally Posted by chillig35
    for a 8-cell clump fertilized in a petri-dish - there is no "normal path forward" without enormous technological intervention. The question is, should this 8-cell clump, which was a laboratory contrivance - be accorded the status of a human being? If yes, then is it ethical to destroy them? If not, then is it ok to experiment with them?
    I think the more pertinent ethical question is should we be fertilizing the clumps in the petri-dish? The question of what to do with it is likely resolved if we address whether or not they should even be there in the first place.
  9. #49  
    SWEET!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by chillig35
    in my tradition of being a thread-crapper - here is my contribution (a reprise from Monty Python);

    Thread Crapper
    ~ August 16,2005 Poll-Master ~
    August 17, 2005 Century Club Member ~ August 29, 2005

    I have a fondness for intelligence.
    I often black out when doing something really stupid. I supose that's why I'm such a danger to my self
    .



  10.    #50  
    Quote Originally Posted by cellmatrix
    So you are arguing that it is more moral to throw the cells in the toilet than have them be used to help people?

    As I recall, we have had this discussion before, and I still dont get it.
    No, I'm not necessarily arguing that (and if I did before, I have evolved )

    My point is that we should know why we condone what we condone (or don't condone). Because whatever we accept today will be the logical basis for what is asked for tomorrow.

    It may be more moral to throw the cells in the toilet, to bring an end to the travesty that is already in motion.

    It may be more moral to salvage some good out of the travesty that is already in motion.

    It may not be a travesty at all.

    But, to proceed without answering the question is a travesty.
  11. #51  
    Quote Originally Posted by shopharim
    I do not condone it either. I would be interested to know why you do not.
    On the ethical side: one would be a fear of eugenics (only wealthy upper class of society would be able to clone themselves). And the other would be the potential for using a clone to harvest it for organs/body parts.
    from a scientific viewpoint: loss of diversity - could lead to greater increase of recessive (genetic) diseases. Also without sexual reproduction we may lose our immune systems may be compromised as they lose their ability to continue to evolve and fight infectious diseases (imagine if new virus, like HIV, pops up and we don't have the immune system variation to fight it?)

    I think the more pertinent ethical question is should we be fertilizing the clumps in the petri-dish? The question of what to do with it is likely resolved if we address whether or not they should even be there in the first place.
    I agree - so should IVF clinics be shut down? For those infertile couples who are desperate to have a child of their own, does the government have the right to deny them this possibility? I don't have the answers myself - but that particular line (IVF) has already been crossed - and may be more difficult to turn back.
    Palm m505 -> Treo600 (GSM ATT) -> Treo650 (Cingular) -> BB8700g -> BB Pearl
    "The point of living and of being an optimist, is to be foolish enough to believe the best is yet to come."
  12. #52  
    Quote Originally Posted by shopharim
    No, I'm not necessarily arguing that (and if I did before, I have evolved )
    Palm m505 -> Treo600 (GSM ATT) -> Treo650 (Cingular) -> BB8700g -> BB Pearl
    "The point of living and of being an optimist, is to be foolish enough to believe the best is yet to come."
  13. #53  
    Quote Originally Posted by shopharim
    No, I'm not necessarily arguing that (and if I did before, I have evolved )

    My point is that we should know why we condone what we condone (or don't condone). Because whatever we accept today will be the logical basis for what is asked for tomorrow.

    It may be more moral to throw the cells in the toilet, to bring an end to the travesty that is already in motion.

    It may be more moral to salvage some good out of the travesty that is already in motion.

    It may not be a travesty at all.

    But, to proceed without answering the question is a travesty.
    Even if IVF were stopped right now, the currently stored cells would remain and die just the same.

    Working to save lives and end suffering from something which otherwise will die (a death I might add, that stem cell research had nothing to do with) is the right thing to do.

    Stem cell research is going to develop whether you want it to or not. Whether it happens in the US or it happens in Korea, or somewhere else eventually there will be technology developed which will save lives and ameliorate suffering of lots of people.

    When the time comes when those who are so morally opposed to stem cell research are suddenly faced with a choice of whether or not to cure their own disease, the technology will be embraced and their argument will lay discarded by the wayside.
    Last edited by cellmatrix; 08/16/2005 at 07:41 PM.
  14.    #54  
    IVF is a great example of the dilemma. I don't support the practice despite the joy it brings. But then could we stop it at this late dare? Don't know. I do know childbirth is a privilege not a right. That notwithstanding, people aren't too keen in restrictions. So turning back the clock would be difficult.

    As stated, regardless of whether the practice continues, we have millions of cells that are in limbo from which research could benefit. Logically, going ahead with research seems the obvious choice. But that same logic prevents so from setting the next barrier.

    So, perhaps the question is better framed, does the end justify the means?

    I don't think so.
  15.    #55  
    Of course, this re-begs the question of where to draw the line.

    I know I tend to be ultra-conservative about this type of stuff. I find that life would be fine without all the artificial assistance. Does that mean that the will be suffering or inconvenience? Certainly. But....what's wrong with that?
  16. #56  
    SP, even though I cannot quite grasp why it is immoral to use tissue that is going to die no matter what we do, you are entitled to believe in what you believe, and I respect your civil and thoughtful approach to the discussion. It reinforces me to do the same, although I have to admit I lapse in the civility sometimes.

    Anyway, I feel that it is inevitable, despite what you or I have to say, that stem cell research is going to progress, and in the not too distant future there will be medical therapies available, maybe which do not use stem cells themselves, but were built upon the foundation of knowledge that stem cell research provided.

    When those therapies become available, I do not know about you, but I predict that most of those who poo poo this research now, will be standing in line with everyone else to reap the benefits stem cell research will have given them.
    Last edited by cellmatrix; 08/17/2005 at 12:05 AM.
  17. #57  
    Quote Originally Posted by chillig35
    right now skin cells from a dog were used to clone a puppy (in S Korea). It is only a matter of time before the same can be done with humans (though I do not condone it myself personally)
    I don't condone it either. In fact it would be illegal in Switzerland and most European countries even to try, I don't know about the US. Reproductive cloning has many drawbacks, drawbacks which are not acceptable in humans. Reproductive cloning is highly infefficient. This means that a very high number of pregnancies will result in stillborn children (also in very late stages of pregnancy), and in children suffering from very severe disabilities and diseases. Few cloned animals were fully healthy, many died shortly after birth. All of this may be acceptable when done with animals, but not with humans.

    Because a high number of pregnancies is needed (and hence a high number of women willing to participate in a process with a high chance of disastrous outcome), I am not so sure cloned humans will be a reality in the future. I think it should be made illegal all over the world.

    Therapeutic cloning is a totally different matter. It means growing certain types of human tissues from stem cells (which may, but don't always have to come from embryos). Those tissues may then be used to cure diseases. It does not involve pregnancy and the negative effects described above.
    Last edited by clulup; 08/17/2005 at 04:31 AM.
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
  18. #58  
    Quote Originally Posted by shopharim
    You want to know why it is is easy to preach abstience as the cure-all?

    drum roll please................

    Because it IS the cure-all. That's reality.

    Unfortunately, some would prefer to live in a fantasy world where any indulgences can be entertained without consequence.
    ...It's reality, if you don’t control your sexual desire you had a lot to deal... and more upcoming problem, if you use contraceptives like condoms it’s just eating candy with a cover/wrapper. Go Go Go for abstinence ... after marriage sex is delightful
    Love is a chemical state of mind that's part of our genes and influenced by our upbringing. We are wired for romance in part because we are supposed to be loving parents who care diligently for our helpless babies.

    Gadget begets gadgets
  19.    #59  
    cellmatrix, given my observations of humans, I think you're accurate on all counts. Namely, the experimentation will occur; some useful capabilities will result;and those who once protested will abandon their position for the advantages.

    However, clulup's stated opposition to reproductive cloning makes a better case than I have made. The assured loss of life, or at least quality of life is too high a price to pay.

    The only place that clulup and I differ on this is that I want to protest, preserve, and promote life for all sizes of human cell clumps, not just the ones that matured to a gazillion cells.
  20.    #60  
    protect, not protest

    :embarrassed:

    lol
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