Sunday, March 15, 2009

Embryos are fertilized

Of course they are.

Former Pres. Clinton does not think so. In an interview by Dr. Sanjay Gupta over at CNN, Clinton said that it was okay to experiment on embryos unless they are fertilized.

I think - the answer is I think that we'll work it through. If - particularly if it's done right. If it's obvious that we're not taking embryos that can - that under any conceivable scenario would be used for a process that would allow them to be fertilized and become little babies, and I think if it's obvious that we're not talking about some science fiction cloning of human beings, then I think the American people will support this....

I don't know that I have any reservations, but I was - he has apparently decided to leave to the relevant professional committees the definition of which frozen embryos are basically going to be discarded, because they're not going to be fertilized. I believe the American people believe it's a pro-life decision to use an embryo that's frozen and never going to be fertilized for embryonic stem cell research....

But those committees need to be really careful to make sure if they don't want a big storm to be stirred up here, that any of the embryos that are used clearly have been placed beyond the pale of being fertilized before their use. There are a large number of embryos that we know are never going to be fertilized, where the people who are in control of them have made that clear. The research ought to be confined to those....

But there are values involved that we all ought to feel free to discuss in all scientific research. And that is the one thing that I think these committees need to make it clear that they're not going to fool with any embryos where there's any possibility, even if it's somewhat remote, that they could be fertilized and become human beings.

And he said it many times. Some say he must have meant "implantation" but we do not buy that. Clinton said in an earlier interview with Larry King the same thing.

But let me say, I feel very strongly about this. I think that I worked hard on the sequencing of the human genome. We finished it when I was president. Now there are all these practical applications being spun out of it. We've identified the genes that were high predictors of breast cancer. We're getting close on Parkinson's. We're even making headway on Alzheimer's. But this stem cell research, if the stem cells are frozen embryonic stem cells, if they are never going to be used to be fertilized, to bring a life into being, then I think making them available for medical research is the pro-life position and I honestly don't understand -- I would understand it if we were going and raiding stem cell banks, where these stem cells were going to be used to actually fertilize eggs and have babies.

Even Gupta did not correct Clinton on his use of "fertilized" (On another note, remember that slip that Gupta made in Larry King Live when he said that one of the tasks of the surgeon general was to "prevent" life -- he corrected himself quickly when he said "preserve life".)

Check Jill Stanek. Read also Domenico and Kelly.

Here's a link to that interview.

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