Monday, March 9, 2009

Obama's Lifting of Funding Ban on Stem Cell Research is Victory for Science, Democracy, and Life

We've all seen in movies, learned in history classes, how superstition and religious intolerance got in the way of science in the Middle Ages, even during the Renaissance.

It's hard to believe that we were just inhabiting a 21st century Dark Ages regarding stem cell research. True, it wasn't banned, but funding was withheld by a President, guided by ignorance. Who knows how many lives might have been saved, could have been saved in the future, by research into stem cells and their organ-building capacities, research that was not conducted due to a lack of funding these past eight years.

Thank goodness, that's over now. When historians look back at our time, and cite the best things done by Barack Obama, his lifting of the stem cell research Federal funding ban today will be high among them. On the one hand, it's unfortunate that excellence has to be highlighted by the bad policy it replaces. On the other hand, it's gratifying that the democratic process works - in the Middle Ages, there was little that could be done to remedy the rulings of an unschooled king.

Stem cell research is about saving and improving life. Its consequence is that more people will live, and live healthier lives. Today, in other words, is not only a victory for science and democracy, but for life.

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