Strings Attached to MO Life Science Funding: Blame Amendment 2
A column in the KC Star
grouses that the state is funding life sciences research into animal and plant experiments, but not human studies. From the column
by Jason Gertzen
The Missouri General Assembly created the trust fund and the grant program a few years ago. It was one of the ways state leaders decided to use the several billion dollars Missouri ultimately is to receive from its portion of the tobacco settlement.
But only earlier this year did lawmakers pump money into the trust fund for the first time. When they did so, the program was restricted to funding plant or animal projects. Some lawmakers expressed concern about state dollars paying for human embryonic stem-cell research...
The rules of the grant program could be changed so that the human health restrictions are not so broad, Duncan said. "There is a lot of human health research that could be done that has nothing to do with embryonic stem-cell research," Duncan said. "To provide those restrictions is a bit stifling."
That may be. But the Stowers Institute Crowd, who bought and paid for their own constitutional amendment known as Amendment 2 , is responsible for these restrictions. You see, the amendment not only created a constitutional right to perform human cloning in Missouri--accurately defined as the creation of human embryos via SCNT--but it created an explicit non discrimination policy that required human embryonic stem cell research to be funded if other forms of human stem cell research receive state money. So, because of this overreaching and arrogance, the opponents of ESCR and human SCNT just didn't fund human research in order to ensure that state money would not have to be paid toward what they consider to be unethical and immoral experiments.
Gertzen should have placed the blame where it belongs--on overreaching by Amendment 2's authors.