Letter to the Editor: Being anti-abortion and anti-stem-cell research is OK

Editor:

In response to RuthAnne Frost’s column on stem-cell research (“Stem-cell research needs to be reconsidered by ‘pro-life’ supporters,” June 23), I would like to point out that she has not addressed the primary concern of the anti-abortion folks who oppose stem-cell research: the question of whether the embryo to be destroyed for its stem cells is or is not a human baby. Frost compares this ethical question to animal research, use of placebos and use of experimental drugs (the latter I believe is done with permission of the patient or someone entitled to speak for them, and in the hope of saving or improving that patient’s life), she does not consider the “extraction of stem cells” to be equivalent to the destruction of human life. I differ, as do the president and the anti-abortioners who oppose the research. Being “pro-life” and opposing stem-cell research is hardly paradoxical. No one fears an army of clones (well, most people don’t), but we fear a world where we will sacrifice our children to save ourselves from these diseases.

The critical question becomes, is it human? One’s stance on that should determine one’s opinion on stem cells. I believe there is very good cause to answer yes. I believe if there is to be debate, it should center on that very key point.

Desiree Hausam

Salt Lake City