Human Exceptionalism

Fox’s Tragedy Doesn’t Make His Statements About Embryonic Stem Cells True

Michael J. Fox

Michael J. Fox doesn’t tell the truth about Senator Talent in this ad. Talent does not want to outlaw stem cell research. Rather, he does not support Missouri’s Amendment 2, which would create a constitutional right in Missouri to conduct human cloning–which isn’t the same thing at all.

I find it sad that Fox would use his own tragic disease as an emotional club for political purposes. But since he has, since he placed himself in the center of all of this, people need to know a little more about the story that Fox either doesn’t know, or doesn’t care to tell you. Embryonic stem cells cause tumors when injected into mice. This has been known for years, but the most recent example involved mice with Parkinson’s who were injected with human ES cells–apparently to very bad effect. Nor will using cloned embryos to obtain ES cells–which would be authorized by Amendment 2–solve this seemingly intractable tumor problem.

Ads like Fox’s are shameful in that they pull our emotional heart strings–who could not be touched by seeing anyone with Parkinson’s–without shedding any actual light. Only in this case, deception rather than truth, was the order of the day.

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