President Obama recently signed a bill that will end the ban on federal funding for embryonic stem cell research, signaling a new approach to science in America. Under George W. Bush, America had slipped into a kind of modern “Dark Age,” in which reason was subjugated to mindless prejudice. In addition to ending the ban on stem cell research, Obama issued a memo declaring that science should be protected from political influence. The Bush administration frequently blocked funding for scientific advancements. And his officials even went so far as to edit scientific research findings in order to support Bush’s stance on such isues as global warming.
By lifiting the restrictions on funding stem cell research, President Obama has opened the door to exciting possibilities: Cures may be found for such stubborn afflictions as cancer, diabetes, Alzheimer’s Disease and AIDS.
Under the Obama Administration, science is again free from political impediments. Of course, not everyone is happy. Diehard opponents of stem cell research raise the specter of human cloning and protest the use of fertilized human embryos (photo above) in research. They interpret it as abortion.
I know it’s a stretch. You know it’s a stretch. But nobody ever accused these people of being temperate or logical. They are besotted with fanaticism. Thankfully they are in a decided minority. A recent Gallup Poll found that only 19 per cent of Americans support the Bush ban on funding stem cell research.
It looks as if America, with its first African-American President at the helm of the ship of state, is emerging from the miasma of the Bush Dark Age.