Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Follow the Logic

One of my favorite movies is The Princess Bride. Full of great lines and great moments, the story continues to be a classic. One of my favorite scenes is when Wesley (the hero) takes on Vizzini (an antagonist) in a duel of wits. Wesley wins because, as he admits to Buttercup, he’s been building up immunity to iocane powder.

It makes me wonder if we are doing the same thing today…

I’m going to jump right to the point. We’ve known that research companies use aborted fetus cells as part of medical research, but there is a rather new market that we don’t hear about.

Kidney cells from aborted babies are being used to test sweeteners for sodas. Senomyx is a research company under contract with Pepsi to test sweeteners for their drinks. While the cells do not make it into the drinks themselves, they are used to do the research for the drinks.

This leads me to the next question. How far away are we from cannibalism?

Follow the logic.

Human cells are being used in research for the drinks, thus we are only a step away. Does this frighten you? What does this tell us about our society?

Those of us “older folk” remember a 1973 science fiction movie called Soylent Green. Even the name turns my stomach (still!) just thinking of the context. But this science fiction idea is not so science fiction anymore.

Let me summarize the plot… (Yes! Spoiler alert!!!)

The main character is a police officer who through a series of murders tracks down a corporation who says they are using plankton from the disappearing oceans of 2022 to make healthy crackers called soylent green for the starving people to eat. The world has become over populated, the green house effect has led to poor crops, and the general state of the people is that they are in a starving panic. The main character’s shaman is an older man who is dying. This shaman figures out that the murders are committed to keep the results of an oceanic research paper out of the public eye. The research? There is there is no more plankton in the dying oceans. So the next question is “What is soylent green?” As the shaman is dying he begs the main character to see what happens to his dead body and sure enough, it is turned into these soylent green crackers for people to eat.

Are you sick to your stomach yet?

Well, the fact of the matter is this: We are only a step away from Soylent Green.

Follow the logic.

1973 – abortions are made legal

We find out through medical research that a fetus has complete human DNA from the moment of conception.

We begin to use aborted fetus cell lines to create vaccinations for our children (See MMR, Varicella, and Hepatitis A ingredients) We justify this because it is saving lives.

We begin to use aborted fetus cells lines for research for cures for diseases. (It happens that adult stem cells have helped many different diseases while fetus cells still have produced very little cures yet). But we again justify this because it saves lives.

We use aborted fetus cells to test sweeteners for human consumption. How is this saving lives?

It doesn’t. But this is the next step in the de-valuing of human life. There really is no reason for this type of research except that we’ve become so de-sensitized that we think nothing of it.

If we take the next logical step, we might ask ourselves: Would it be so bad to be cannibals if we put these cells in our food? The fetuses are already dead, right?

The slippery slope was determined back in 1973, but when do we cry uncle?

Are we really that far away from Soylent Green?

I can’t help but think that standing by and letting this happen is any different than building up an immunity to iocane powder. Can it do us any good?

Here is the research:


Lina Fletcher said...

great commentary. Thanks for sharing. I will do the same.

Loretta Oakes said...

Thanks, Lina.

Lady Sybil Crawley said...

While I believe that abortion is an heinous affront to the will of God, we live in a country in which individuals are guaranteed by our constitution the right to follow any faith, or none at all, as each deems fit. Many people do not believe in God and, therefore, do not view abortion as a sin. I strongly disagree, but I understand that, in order to live in a country in which freedom of (or from) religion is enjoyed, I cannot shove my personal views down other people's throats.

You cannot force anyone to have faith. If a person is forced to "believe" just because one group deems it so, then is it really faith?

I hate abortion, but making it illegal did not stop women from having abortions. Women have always found some means of ending unwanted pregnancies. This is a sad fact.

So what do we then do with those aborted children? The women who abort them have already shown a callus disrespect for human life. These women are clearly not interested in paying for these children to have a proper burial. How are the abortion clinics to dispose of these babies? As far as the clinics are concerned, the babies are no more than biohazard. There are government rules and regulations for how biohazardous material may be disposed of, though I am sure the government was not specifically thinking about aborted babies when these laws were enacted.

Selling these babies for research certainly seems revolting. However, if the medical research carried out using these stem cells leads to the discovery of cures, then perhaps these babies lives were not completely given in vain. If these cells are used to find a cure for cancer, or diabetes, or Parkinson's disease, or Alzheimer's disease, then the lives the of babies from whom these stem cells were taken will have had a great purpose, even though the methodology is immensely disturbing.

The stem cells being used to research sodas are being used in an effort to find a cure for diabetes. They are NOT being used IN the sodas. We are NOT drinking stem cells. This in not cannibalism. The scientists are not, and will not, be using the stem cells IN food as cannibalism has already been demonstrated to create a whole slew of other neurological diseases, such as Kuru, to name just one.

But, with regard to your point about whether or not we are building up immunity to the iocane powder known as abortion, you are right on point. People hear about stem cells and forget that those stem cells used to be a baby. Society is certainly disconnected from that fact. Furthermore, while stem cell research is essential, stem cells can also be easily collected from the umbilical cords on newborns. I know I thought about saving my children's cord blood, but it was too cost prohibitive, so I chose to donate it instead.

We will not turn people away from abortion by attempting to gross them out. I think it's more important to fight the battle with improved education. Continue to encourage young people to wait until they are married to have sex. Teach people how the heart starts beating between the 19th and 21st day after conception. Continue to teach people that our children are our greatest gift from God.

Better education, not scare tactics... bringing people into a closer relationship with God, teaching them that He loves them, teaching them to love themselves. It seems to me that this would do more to reverse iocane immunity than attempting to frighten or disgust people into doing the right thing.

I hope I haven't offended you with these thoughts. I sought to follow your blog because I think you are an inspiring writer and I find your blog encouraging.

Loretta Oakes said...

Dear Lady Sybil:

Thank you for your thoughts.
Here are just a few things to think about:
1. I did not mention religion...not even once, so I can only assume that you make the connection. I am curious on why you brought that up and the correlation with faith.
2. Making it legal did not stop abortion, you are right, but it did pave the way to more promiscuity and then more abortions. The heart of the matter lies with what happened before the woman ever walks into the abortion clinic. If you are curious about that, read the book Motherhood Interrupted to learn about women who've had abortions and the traumas they face from it. The stories are heart wrenching but they show the victims abortion leaves behind and the continuing struggles of those who've faced this reality. Abortion is never the answer.
3. I am making a commentary concerning the slippery slope we are on with regards to science and what is permissible. Ethics needs to play more of a role with regard to science and the promulgation of research.
4. I was quite clear that the cells did not make it into the soda. Quite clear. And I included the link to the story behind this that also makes it clear that it is used in research.
5. Human dignity is protected by our founding fathers saying: All men are created equal. It didn't say born equal. Because we know through scientific research that the fetus is human from the moment of conception, there is no reason why that pre-born baby should not be given the same rights as those who are born.
6. Thank you for following my blog. I do seek to inspire, but I also seek to educate. This is not scare tactics, this is what is happening. I am merely encouraging others to open their minds to how numb we are becoming with regard to life.