Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Off Topic: When Personal Beliefs Should Be Put Aside For the Greater Good...

I realize that people have beliefs, I have them too, but when the potential exists to help millions of people, I might have to reconsider putting my beliefs aside, just for a second, for the greater good of humankind. That being said, I really am dissappointed that President Bush has decided to veto expanding embryonic stem cell research. No matter what we decide, other countries will move forward, leaving America in the dark. Sorry my fellow citizens, this is a blow to the future of health sciences in America. Looks like we'll be on the sidelines as the next leap of health science occurs right before our eyes. Those who stand with President Bush, are you not going to use the health advances discovered when cures tied to stem cell reasearch are found? What would you do if your father, mother, son, daugther, aunt, uncle's terminal disease could be cured? Would you put your beliefs aside then?


Carl said...

Just one Question, at what price is OK to for such advances. The president has said that this would be too much. Would you kill someone to save someone else, is killing 1 person OK to save 10 or 100 others. The president has said any sign of lift basiclly is too much of price to save anyone else. I agree that much could be learned, I also know that there is usaully other ways to acomplish the same goal so lets look that what other possiblities exist since he has vetoed it.

freedumb said...

"Several polls have shown a clear majority of Americans support the research, which would use embryos that already exist in fertility clinics and would otherwise be thrown out." (reference)

I don't see the question mark...folks would rather see these embryo's thrown away?

Besides, this is a president who killed thousands of people at war by the way...

qw said...

The point of your post seems to be sometimes you have to set aside your beliefs for "the greater good"

When is that ok?
Who's beliefs should be set aside?
Who decides what counts as "the greater good".

I submit that if you eliminate everyone who is chronically sick and of inferior intelligence it will serve the greater good by preventing precious resources from being "wasted" on people who are less productive or even counter productive to the society. Should we set aside certain people's beliefs for that "greater good."

I do believe the above statement I just made is certainly true. I believe it would serve our society as a whole better if we did such a thing as far as making the remaining people better off and even healthier. It may have other negative affects on our sense of equality and justice but once again, who gets to weigh these greater good arguments.

I am not making a statement about whether or not we should do stem cell research or about whether or not the President is correct.

Yes these embryos are scheduled to be destroyed anyway. His argument is its exploitive of life and where that might lead. You might "believe" that "belief" is preposterous.

So why is it that your belief is not in need of being set aside?

Nice straw man by the way. The President killed thousands in war thus he doesn't care about killing. You actually believe thats a valid debate point?

If you are willing to be honest, why not state what your true belief is about embryos? Do you actually believe we should not do research on them but are willing to set that belief aside? Or is it what I suspect that you don't have a problem with it but would like others who do to set their belief aside?

Are you willing to answer that honestly?

D said...

Hello FF,
This is a hot topic. I tend to agree with Bush on this 1 and only topic. The problem with this research vessel is that there are other options to come to the same conclusions.

An Example - The Placenta. Do you know what this is? This by product of having a baby is essentially thrown in the garabage after birth, and has the same dna and cells as the embryo - why can't researchers go after this? I am sure there are many other ways to achieve this goal without sacraficing a life.

The problem for me with this type of research is that once "the law" takes effect, there is no going back, whos to say they won't say .."well that baby you just miscarried is now technically an item for research... no burial for you". Our government has a way of inching its way to greater power. This is sometimes not so good. Ever hear of Eminent Domain?
excuse spelling, my mind is tired, thoughts many.

Anonymous said...

So, it's better to destroy the embryos and not learn anything from them?

That's what I don't get. These are going to go to waste anyway. If you believe that these are a human life then let's compare one of them to me.

If I knew my days were numbered and that I could further the advancement of science to help millions and it wouldn't hurt? I'd be all in favor of being used.

Not to mention the fact that the quality of life in one of those fertility clinic freezers can't be all that good anyway!!!

freedumb said...

D--You're right, hot topic! I knew I was opening a can of worms, but it's important people talk about it.

About the placenta, I could be wrong, but I believe embryo's contain differential/stem cells that have no designated or predetermined function...these cells may hold the key to growing cells that normally don't regrow. The placenta, from what I understand, are already "designated," thus no longer have the programming to form nerve cells, skin cells, etc. I'm not a scientist, so I can't say that's 100% accurate, but from my understanding, that's what I see.

I understand your concern with going too far, but as with most discoveries, there is always a threat of this...look at the nuclear bomb. We can't let fear of misuse hold us back from discovering new things though, otherwise we'd never make progress.

Also, no life is being sacrified...these embryos are designated to be destroyed.

qw--The questions you ask are for each individual to decide. I can't decide for anyone else what is okay and what isn't.

Some examples:

- The pro-choice person who decides 1st term abortions should be eliminated.

- The gay or lesbian who decides marriage should remain between a man and a woman.

You said, Yes these embryos are scheduled to be destroyed anyway. His argument is its exploitive of life and where that might lead.

Exploitive of life? That's an interesting debate point as well.

I do wish those that believed exactly what you said to put their beliefs aside for the greater good--my grandmother who's suffering from Alzeihmer's might be cured? Heck yeah! I'm all for it.

Anonymous, I don't get that either...

qw said...

Thanks for being honest FF,

There are plenty of valid reasons to argue for doing the research. I wish you had stated your position and made the case for it.

Stating that "I might have to reconsider putting my beliefs aside, just for a second, for the greater good of humankind." seems a bit misleading to me.

Its just to easy to suggest "you" might consider putting aside your beliefs when really you have done no such thing but are suggesting others should do so. And as I said, there are plenty of good arguments to be made for such. It seems to me that making them would have been a stronger case than suggesting everyone should be willing to set aside their beliefs when really what you mean is you think that your beliefs are correct and those who belief differently should set theirs aside.

Now if you had said you are personally against stem cell research but are reconsidering whether you should set that belief aside that would be an argument, but as it is, its kind of a guilt trip disguised as an argument.

I guess all that is to say, make the argument, skip the guilt trip.

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