Discolor Online

Weblog of the sweetest person you never want to piss off.



Lately I've seen several billboards popping up around my neighborhood in Seattle. They show sweet-faced, chubby (white, of course) six-month-old babies with the text "WHAT! Embryos are BABIES!"

I know science is out of vogue at the moment, especially with the evangelical rapture-loving right-to-life set but I'm still frustrated by the constant attempts to bamboozle and confound and obfuscate on every damn issue. Embryos are NOT babies, they're EMBRYOS. I know, I know, it makes it a lot easier to guilt people into thinking about chubby, healthy little white babies for the purposes of fighting stem cell research but how about some facts instead?

Embryo is not just a highfalutin way of saying "baby" here, the word embryo actually has specific meaning: 1) An organism in its early stages of development, especially before it has reached a distinctively recognizable form. 2) In humans, the prefetal product of conception from implantation through the eighth week of development.

Embryonic Stem Cell research uses human blastocysts. That would be this:

Blastocysts are approximately .2mm in size. This is not a "baby". It has the potential to turn into a baby. It could become a baby under the right cicrumcstances. It also represents a possible solution to any number of horrible, debilitating conditions that weaken, cripple, and kill your living, breathing human cohabitants here on planet earth. Embryonic stem cell research could hold the answer for diseases that are currently incurable diseases (juvenile diabetes, cancers, Alzheimer's, Lou Gehrig's disease, Parkinson's disease, multiple sclerosis), birth defects, crippling injuries (like spinal cord injuries).

Millions of people need these solutions. Millions of people are waiting for us to do the right thing.


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