Once again, a Missouri newspaper simply refuses to accurately report a story about human cloning research in MO. A group called Cures Without Cloning is attempting to bring an initiative to ban human somatic cell nuclear transfer in Missouri. From its press release, how the proposed initiative would define human cloning:
Section 38(e) 1. It shall be unlawful to clone or attempt to clone a human being. Researchers may conduct stem cell research to discover cures for disease [my emphasis]and develop stem cell therapies and cures, provided that the research complies with the limitations of this section and, in addition, the limitations of Section 38(d). 2. For all purposes within this constitution:
(1) "Clone or attempt to clone a human being" includes the
creation of or the attempt to create, by means other than
fertilization of a human egg with human sperm, a new human
organism that is virtually identical genetically to an existing
or previously existing human organism or human organisms.
Note, there is no ban on embryonic stem cell research in the proposed amendment, whatsoever. This would be a ban on human cloning, that is, the creation of a human embryo through cloning techniques.
Now look how the Columbia Tribune, byline Jason Rosenbaum, reports the story:
“Group Launches Anti-Stem Cell Initiative”
Opponents of embryonic stem cell research began in earnest today to upend key portions of a constitutional amendment that protects the practice.
Rosenbaum then describes SCNT, and to his credit admits that it creates an embryo (which is not the same thing as creating stem cells), and quotes a representative of Missourians for Life Saving Cures making this ludicrous statement that, if given on a test, would have caused her to flunk high school biology:
[Connie]Farrow said replicating cells in a laboratory dish holds promise for the future. “There’s never been a human life created that didn’t come from a womb,” Farrow said, “and our measure strictly bans that. But what our measure does is allow scientists to use a person’s own DNA to create a cure for them.”
So, all of the IVF embryos were not human life? Please.
The media in Missouri is shamelessly biased on the issue of human cloning. Despite this, and despite Mr. Stowers “investing” more than $30 million to buy his own constitutional amendment, the media’s pet Amendment 2 barely passed. If this initiative gets on the ballot and people are able to cut through the smoke and mirrors from Missourians for Lifesaving Cures and their minions in the media, Missouri could very well outlaw human cloning. And that would change the face of the biotechnological debate.