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Misreading the Reagans
The American Prowler ^ | 10/1/02 | George Neumayr

Posted on 10/01/2002 3:55:43 PM PDT by Ragtime Cowgirl

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By George Neumayr
Published 10/1/02 12:03:00 AM

"Nancy Reagan Fights Bush Over Stem Cells," reads the New York Times headline. And the Times, usually not in the mood to take her seriously, is suddenly ready to help: "'A lot of time is being wasted,' she told a friend last week who was given permission to pass her words on to the New York Times. 'A lot of people who could be helped are not being helped.'"

Ronald Reagan argued that human life begins at the moment of conception and that destroying an innocent human life for reasons of utility is unjust, dishonorable, and godless. But the Times isn't terribly interested in what he might think of embryonic stem cell research. The Times relays Michael Deaver's crass response to the observation that Reagan would have disapproved of his wife's new cause: "Ronald Reagan didn't have to take care of Ronald Reagan for the last 10 years."

Reagan wasn't the type to discard moral principle if it conflicted with convenience. But the Deavers around him never cared too much for his pro-life principles, and so they see no problem with using his condition to advance a cause he would have opposed. Such is their selfless stewardship of his legacy.

The Times reports that Nancy Reagan is the daughter of a "neurosurgeon," as though that strengthens her case. The Times doesn't bother to mention that her father, Dr. Loyal Davis, was a pro-lifer who confirmed Ronald Reagan in his views.

But so what? The Times can't be distracted from the point it wants to make, namely, that George Bush should now consider supporting embryo destruction for medical research because Nancy Reagan is in favor of it. Apropos of nothing, the Times reports that "Mrs. Reagan's dispute with Mr. Bush is complicated by the long, rather strained history between their families."

Forced to respond to an artificial controversy, the White House generously said of Nancy Reagan's media campaign for the research, "A great many good-hearted people have strong feelings about this. The president is confident that the decision he made last year strikes the right balance between moral and ethical responsibility and furthering scientific research."

Bush, to defend his policy, could just quote Ronald Reagan's own words. "We cannot diminish the value of one category of human life -- the unborn -- without diminishing the value of all human life," Reagan said. "We will never recognize the true value of our own lives until we affirm the value in the life of others, a value of which Malcolm Muggeridge says, 'however low it flickers or fiercely burns, it is still a Divine flame which no man dare presume to put out, be his motives ever so humane and enlightened.'"

Reagan was well aware of the utilitarian arguments for destroying unborn human life. He never found them persuasive. Good motives, he thought, could never make an evil act good. He would find abhorrent the elite's view of human embryos as guinea pigs for research.

"Obviously, some influential people want to deny that every human life has intrinsic, sacred worth. They insist that a member of the human race must have certain qualities before they accord him or her status as a 'human being,'" he said. "They want to pick and choose which individuals have value. Some have said that only those individuals with 'consciousness of self' are human beings. One such writer has followed this deadly logic and concluded that 'shocking as it may seem, a newly born infant is not a human being.'"

The Times reports that last year "Mrs. Reagan wrote to Mr. Bush, saying she hoped that sparing other families what hers had suffered could be part of her husband's legacy." Extending some lives by ending other lives is not Reagan's legacy.

In this media-ginned-up dispute between Bush and Nancy Reagan, Ronald Reagan would side with Bush.

George Neumayr is a frequent contributor to The American Prowler.

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TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; Culture/Society; Editorial; Government; News/Current Events; Philosophy; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: abortionlist; bias; catholiclist; ludditesareus; newjersey; nytimes; prolife; stemcellresearch

1 posted on 10/01/2002 3:55:43 PM PDT by Ragtime Cowgirl
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To: Ragtime Cowgirl
FWIW, I agree with Nancy Reagan. While abortion is still unfortunately legal, make use of the stem cells. They show tremendous promise for use in medical applications. I don't see using stem cell material any different than using cadavers for medical research. Maybe something postive, anything positive can come from almost 40 years of state sanctioned murder.
2 posted on 10/01/2002 4:07:54 PM PDT by SandfleaCSC
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To: Ragtime Cowgirl
Shame on Nancy.
3 posted on 10/01/2002 4:12:10 PM PDT by RAT Patrol
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4 posted on 10/01/2002 4:20:19 PM PDT by Mo1
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To: SandfleaCSC; MHGinTN; tame; Coleus; Sabertooth
There's a big difference between using adult stem cells and fetal stem cells. One requires the creation of embryos or the use of material from aborted fetuses.

Perhaps one more eloquent than I can help you understand. Here's a good start: Celling Lies, posted by Sabertooth.

5 posted on 10/01/2002 4:24:33 PM PDT by Ragtime Cowgirl
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To: SandfleaCSC
So 40,000,000 wrongs can somehow make a right?
6 posted on 10/01/2002 4:27:14 PM PDT by Notforprophet
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To: RAT Patrol
Shame on the slick propagandists who have exploited Nancy's current state, caring for her beloved husband through his long battle with alzheimers, for their own ends.
7 posted on 10/01/2002 4:28:44 PM PDT by Ragtime Cowgirl
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To: Ragtime Cowgirl
They might not like the decision that PRESIDENT Bush made, but I think it was the lesser of 2 evils.

Say no to it, and the cells that already exist will be destroyed and the research will stop, or say yes, and new cells will be used.

He came to the right decison, continue with the research, but ONLY on the cells you already have.

An excellent moral and political decision.
8 posted on 10/01/2002 4:33:47 PM PDT by Aric2000
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To: Notforprophet
Pretty simplistic view of the issue don't you think? Let's narrow it down to just the usage of fetal stem cells from aborted pregnancies. Regardless of our views on abortion, the GOP still sits on its hands and it is still legal. Now why not use the material for some end other than throw it away as bio-waste.

GOP stance = "Its okay to kill them, but whatever you do, don't use the tissue to advance medical science."

Bush and the GOP may think this stance gives them some kind of moral highground on abortion while getting away with letting it happen everyday. Me, I see it as a trick, a ruse to help placate the pro-life voters of the GOP and cushion the party from any political fallout. In the meantime, maybe, just maybe, the next big medical breakthrough will slip through our fingers.
9 posted on 10/01/2002 4:44:49 PM PDT by SandfleaCSC
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To: SandfleaCSC
Frankly I don't think it's simplistic at all. Any harvesting of fetal stem cells from aborted fetuses for the benefit of the living strikes me as abhorrent.

I believe that God knows each of us even when we're still in our mothers womb. The Bible speaks to this very concept. I believe that He knew each of us before we were even conceived.

Using the cells from aborted fetuses for research to aid the living is perhaps the most cynical attempt yet by scientists to erase God's judgement on our sinful selves. It is precisely because mankind rejected God that we are plagued by these illnesses, so how can we presume to thumb our noses at Him vis a vis curing disease through such abominable means?

It's a 21st Century Tower of Babel... and I want no part of it.

10 posted on 10/01/2002 5:11:27 PM PDT by Notforprophet
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To: Ragtime Cowgirl
Yeah, you're right in your post #7.
11 posted on 10/01/2002 5:17:55 PM PDT by RAT Patrol
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To: RAT Patrol
When Michael gives yet another pro stem cell speech on his radio show, I cringe.

To oppose these caring people is to sentence heroes to death.

Our PR people are capable of selling anything - to willing buyers.

12 posted on 10/01/2002 6:44:47 PM PDT by Ragtime Cowgirl
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To: SandfleaCSC
Let me post two links to the other side of the argument and give the authors conclusion from one article:

The field of stem cell research holds out considerable promise for the treatment of disease and injury, but this promise is not unlimited. There are real, possibly insurmountable, scientific challenges to the use of embryonic stem cells as a medical treatment for disease and injury. In contrast, adult stem cell research holds out nearly equal promise while circumventing the enormous social, ethical, and political issues raised by the use of human embryos for research. There is clearly much work that needs to be done before stem cells of any age can be used as a medical treatment. It seems only practical to put our resources into the approach that is most likely to be successful in the long run. In light of the serious problems associated with embryonic stem cells and the relatively unfettered promise of adult stem cells, there is no compelling scientific argument for the public support of research on human embryos.

First Things, January 2002, The Basics About Stem Cells

First Things, Aug/Sep 2002, Stem Cells and False Hopes

13 posted on 10/01/2002 7:19:59 PM PDT by ExpandNATO
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To: Aric2000; All
Would someone care to explain for me why these scientists are not using highest primate embryonic stem cells instead of jumping into human embryonic stems cell lines?
14 posted on 10/01/2002 7:54:56 PM PDT by MHGinTN
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To: SandfleaCSC; MHGinTN; tame; Coleus; Sabertooth; **New_Jersey; *Pro_Life; *Abortion_list; ...

We do not object to stem cell research. We object to killing embryos and undifferentiated totipotent cells to do stem cell research. The only research that has been successful so far has been adult stem cell research.

Placenta and umbilical chord stem cells also hold promise.

It is wrong to produce life by bringing a sperm and an egg together, to harvest parts.

We have lost God's protection because of abortion, I pity the Human Race in the USA and elsewhere. A blast has a soul, it's a Godlike and living human being the moment it's conceived where it is an genetically individually human life which immediately starts growing the moment it's formed.

Lies about fetal stem cell research!!
15 posted on 10/01/2002 8:16:57 PM PDT by Coleus
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