The USA does not have any federal laws on human cloning, while most developed countries do, because polarized debate in Congress and the Senate has
blocked efforts to pass cloning laws. Two types of cloning are at issue: "reproductive cloning," which leads to a baby, and "therapeutic cloning,"
which is used to develop treatments for diseases. A bill to ban both types of cloning has failed to pass twice since 2001, but was reintroduced on
Thursday by Sen. Sam Brownback (R-Kansas). A new conservative group, led by Leon Kass, chair of the President's Council on Bioethics, has developed a
plan for an even more comprehensive total cloning ban - and promises to polarize debate even further.
The United States is one of the few developed countries without legislation regarding human cloning. Debates have fallen apart amidst squabbling over
when human life begins and the inability to separate reproductive cloning from therapeutic cloning. ...Discussions about human cloning legislation are
heating up once again, with two opposing conservative camps vying for the best strategy to outlaw the practice. On Thursday, Sen. Sam Brownback
(R-Kansas) reintroduced a bill to ban human cloning that has failed to pass twice since 2001. The bill would ban both reproductive cloning, which
would lead to a baby, and therapeutic cloning of the type researchers believe could lead to treatments for human diseases.
But a new group has entered the debate. Led by Leon Kass, chair of the President's Council on Bioethics, and Eric Cohen, editor in chief of The New
Atlantis, a conservative journal on technology and society, the group says Brownback's strategy is flawed. ...Brownback's bill "appears unlikely to
succeed in the next Congress as well," the group wrote in a document listing its goals. The American Journal of Bioethics blog published text from
Titled "Bioethics for the Second Term: Legislative Recommendations," the group's plan says in part: "Meanwhile, South Koreans successfully cloned
human embryos; British HFEA authorizes human cloning-for-research; Harvard scientists get permission to do human cloning-for-research; a right to do
such research is constitutionalized in California and endorsed in several other states. We did not get the preferred convention passed at the United
Nations. We have lost much ground."
Please visit the link provided for the complete story.
James Thompson of U.W. Madison is credited as the first scientist to isolate a human embryonic stem cell in 1998. The discovery allowed researchers
around the world the ability to study these precursor cells to every human organ. On Aug. 9, 2001, an executive order from Bush ruled that U.S.
laboratories can receive federal funding to study only the 22 embryonic stem cell lines already available. Researchers point out that 22 lines are not
enough to work with and besides, all of the lines are contaminated.
See: The Stem Cell Gold Rush
The 2001 Senate Hearing on cloning gives an overview of several pro and con arguments. People arguing for a total ban say any cloning, including stem
cell cloning, is disrespectful of human life. Those arguing for therapeutic cloning say there is a great deal of misinformation surrounding cloning,
and that the polarization is synthetic. Business and other interests in favor of total deregulation do not present their arguments in hearings or to
the public. The 2001 hearing minutes are well worth reading.
See: Senate Hearing on Cloning
The polarization may be orchestrated by corporate interests to prevent consensus and any
US cloning ban, and thereby, to keep the industry
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[edit on 19-3-2005 by soficrow]
[edit on 19-3-2005 by soficrow]