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Jack Sisson's Life Ethics Blog
We must find new ways through many ethical issues, especially regarding bioethics, medical ethics, and criminal justice. Jack Sisson's 'Life Ethics' blog focuses on numerous areas of concern, including the philosophical and ethical dilemmas surrounding stem-cell research, abortion, medical research, and health care.
Tuesday, June 14, 2005
Selfishness will kill us...literally
When we are healthy we have ten thousand wishes and desires, but when we are sick we only have one single wish.
That was taken from Toni's post (June 7th), taken from Omar's post on the inevitability of stem cell research. It's true--it is inevitable. How much more selfish can we as a race get? I'll mind my p's and q's in my wording as best I can on this but aren't we trading a life for a life...or lots of lives for lots of lives? Let's face it, humankind is not going to go extinct anytime soon. There are plenty of us plodding along to Starbucks and picking up kids from daycare--so many people not all of them are being fed and cared for appropriately. Yet, we're preparing to embark on this mission that's just going to extend the lives of those nature is already doing its best to remove. I'm certainly not suggesting we want people to be dying. Believe me, within the past six months four members of my immediately family have been essentially given death sentences within the next year. Could stem cell research save them? You bet.
How many possible-lives will it take to make a cure for Brain Cancer--something that at this moment is killing two people in my family? Lots. No one knows how many exactly but it's more than a handful of freezer-ridden specks. I don't see how a case can be made for millions (billions? trillions?) of potential-lives (that could grow up to be little Beethovens?) being traded to save those that (either through self-choice or nature) are being weeded out. I don't mean to sound heartless but no one has ever made it off this Earth alive. We all die. If it wasn't for death, there wouldn't be room for new life. That's how it goes.
I know the arguments will go something like this:
1) You're saving REAL people with stem cell research. You're throwing away the research parts anyway, so why not use them? Just like in baseball, you trade one major leaguer for 20 prospects/draft picks.
2) They might not grow up to be Beethovens. The could grow up to be Hitlers. Then what?
3) What about those with diseases that never really got a chance to live? Is that fair to them?
To answer those: I can't. They're valid points and like I said in the beginning, this research is inevitable. And when I'm on my deathbed getting new cells pumped into me I'll probably be as happy as can be. But that's also because I'm selfish and love me the most.
Roe v. Wade
Stem Cell Fight!
Bush the hypocrite
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