Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Moral Question for the Anti-Embryonic Stem Cell Research Crowd

A question that it's worth putting to pro-lifers is this: if an abortion is really morally equivalent to killing a human being, do you believe that aborting women should be tried for murder? If not, why not? Of course, there are some pro-lifers who explicitly want this, but when pressed on this question, many anti-abortionists equivocate and say something to the effect that "it's between her and God". It's a curious disconnect that might almost make you think they really don't believe what they say they do - and, if you point it out, might make them think that too.

I thought about this today when I was picking somebody up at lunch, and as I got off the freeway and saw the research facility where the worked, I thought "there are doubtless embryonic stem cells being used in research at this moment in that building". And then I imagined a group of black-clad special forces from Operation Rescue scaling the walls under cover of darkness with night vision goggles, to liberate the stem cells about to be "executed". Great premise for an action movie, right? Wrong, because to most people - even, I bet, anti-stem-cell types, it's ridiculous. And there's another question: if you run across someone who's adamantly against the use of embryonic stem cells in research, ask them if it seems justified to them, and if not, why not? Would it not be morally equivalent to U.S. troops breaking someone out of a WWII concentration camp? In case there's a temptation for them to equivocate by saying "at least some good might come out of the research being done on the stem cells", there was medical research being done by Mengele et al at the camps too. Can that possibly make a difference in either case anyway?

Stem cell blogs here and here.

1 comment:

Alphonsus said...

I think Francis Beckwith touches on these issues in his book "Defending Life." I'd recommend it to anyone interested in the pro-life side of the argument.