Human Exceptionalism

Fetal Farming: It Isn’t A Paranoid Fear

As readers of this blog and my other writings know, I have been warning for more than a year that therapeutic cloning will not long remain restricted to using early cloned human embryos in the Petri dish. And, I have pointed out repeatedly that New Jersey has already explicitly legalized “fetal farming,” that is cloning, implantation, and gestation through the ninth month.

This story hasn’t gained much traction. Will Saletan demonstrated in Slate how biotechnologists are redefining terms and conducting experiments in animals that could lead to this result. (Here is the link.) But other than one opinion column in a New Jersey newspaper, the mainstream media refuses to even report on the radical permissiveness of the New Jersey law, usually referring to it as merely authorizing embryonic stem cell research.

Now, Robert George, a member of the President’s Council on Bioethics, has issued a similar clarion warning in the current edition of the Weekly Standard. “Based on the literature I have read and the evasive answers given by spokesmen for the biotechnology industry at meetings of the President’s Council on Bioethics,” he writes, “I fear that the long-term goal is indeed to create an industry in harvesting late embryonic and fetal body parts for use in regenerative medicine and organ transplantation.”

I have experienced the same evasiveness. When confronted in debates, for example, my pro cloning opponents either remain silent or change the subject.

Please read George’s piece. Forewarned is forearmed.