Tuesday, October 19, 2010

New threat to human embryos in Ireland?

Beware of Greeks bearing gifts! … and beware of wolves in sheep’s clothing!
Two Irish funding agencies, the Health Research Board (HRB) and Science Foundation Ireland (SFI), have announced that they ‘will not fund research projects using human embryonic stem cells.’

Sounds great, but can such government-linked agencies be trusted? Can they be believed? Read on, and you will see that the answer to these questions is an emphatic NO.

The agencies say that ‘in the absence of any legislative framework governing the use of stem cells, they had been directed by the Government via the Department of Health not to fund research in the area.’ Their stance, the news report giving the announcement states, ‘has prompted fresh calls for a national debate on the ethical issues surrounding the use of embryonic stem cells.’

But, wait a minute – a national debate on the ethical issues surrounding the use of embryonic stem cells took place in 2001, when the general public was asked to give its opinion on the matter. Over 1600 submissions were sent in to the Government-appointed Commission on Assisted Human Reproduction, and the vast majority of these submissions were pro-life – that is, the submissions showed that the people of Ireland do not want to have experimentation carried out in Ireland (or anywhere else, for that matter) on human embryos. In 2002 a referendum of the people was held, the aim of which was an attempt to limit protection of the human embryo to the child in the womb, thus leaving the unimplanted embryo open to destruction. That referendum was defeated. Then, in 2003, a further ‘national debate’ took place, this time in the form of a public conference. The list of conference speakers was heavily loaded with individuals who were totally in favour of IVF, including the notorious Lady Warnock as a key speaker. Again, the pro-life message from the floor dominated the proceedings, to the huge disappointment of the organisers. Despite all of these failures to circumvent the Constitutional protection given to unborn life, the CAHR then proceeded to produce a report (2005) that confirmed in its ‘findings’ the anti-life views of the Commission.

We don’t need another ‘national debate’ as to whether or not the human embryo is entitled to care and protection from the moment of conception. We know that all human life starts at conception/fertilisation, and that therefore the human embryo must have legal protection from the moment of its existence, i.e., from conception/fertilisation.

The announcement of a ‘funding ban’ on embryonic stem cell research is, therefore, a delusion presented in an attempt to bring forward legislation that would allow for experimentation and research on human embryos. The stated beliefs of the ordinary people as to the sanctity of all human life, at all its stages, are to be discarded by the vested interests of the IVF/AHR industry and their supporters.