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The proposal of stem cell research seemed like a revolutionary breakthrough in modern day medical history. It had promises of curing the most complicated diseases for which previous research had not found. It sought out to inform the world a promise of universal healing. But on contrary, it provided the world with negative and inaccurate results. The many people hoping for a changed and better life failed to see the true colors of this research. Due to the many religious, legal, ethical, and political issues surrounding the stem cell research, this paper seeks to oppose the stem cell research.
Stem cell research is a mass production of unpromising health to the unfortunate bodies it inhabits. There are two primary types of stem cells: adult stem cells and embryonic stem cells. According to Rowley, “Most of the ethical controversies around human stem cell research concerns embryonic stem cells.” Further, this points out to a mass discussion between ethical and moral standards among scientists and religious leaders. Different people have different opinions concerning the stem cell research. For scientists, the research is merely a proposed way to find a more exclusive path toward a better and substantial future. On the other hand, religious groups and leaders may find this research to have the same properties and results as abortion.
Moreover, the foundation of the stem cell research was flawed with many cracks. As demonstrated by Cook, the first mark to begin this long-term research was scathed with false and unethical producing results. In 2004 and 2005 the Science published two papers about Hwang Woo-suk, a South Korean scientist, regarding his research on stem cells and the papers shocked the medical world by storm. According to the Science, Hwang Woo-suk had claimed that he had “successfully isolated human embryonic cells” (Cook). South Korea undoubtedly took his word for the research results, not knowing his results were false and he had unethically acquired human eggs (Cook. The research had begun the bad reputation it set out to avoid.
In addition, stem cell research proposed the idea to find a more exclusive and universal pathway towards a better and substantial future for a critically ill human being dealing with the most incurable diseases. These incurable diseases are, but not limited to Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, and Blindness. The scientists who conducted the stem cell research defined the research as a way to save lives and promote cures for the human life. Rowley argues that according to the research reports, “the embryonic stem cells had the potential to develop into any kind of cell found in the human body.” The predictions of the outcome of this research were highly rated and, on the verge, to becoming the most successful research ever conducted. Conversely, the reality for these proposed and predicted results began to show the real face behind the mask. Although there was a lot of hype and talk surrounding the new research of these stem cells, it had not provided the main thing it set out to find, a cure. The research had been conducted for over ten years, but since Woo-suk had unethically acquired the embryonic cells in his research, he made it enter into the book of history, setting a world record for being a scientific fraud (Cook). Although stem cell research began with a goal, it slowly started making promises it could not keep.
Besides, previous research did not have the maximum capability that stem cell research had to develop cures for diseases such as Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, and Blindness. Although stem cell research had an indifferent way of proceeding to find these cures, science completely took moral ethics and put it in the back seat for a large portion of this research. "Bioethicist Ruth Faden and stem cell scientist John Gearhart, both leaders in their field, spoke for many: 'We believe that the obligation to relieve human suffering binds us all and justifies the instrumental use of early embryonic life " (Cook). The statement of the scientists wanted to provide the world with the ease of some moral relaxation but backfired when the research failed to provide any cures. Even so, abandoning human morals, especially when destroying the early development of the human embryo, is highly unethical even to some scientists in other fields of study.
Consequently, the human embryo has a moral status like all living human beings in this world. To further point out the moral status of an embryo, “Ronald Bailey, a science writer for Reason magazine, observes that each cell in the human body possesses the entire DNA code, but that each has become specialized as a muscle or skin cell” (George). Stem cell research had brainwashed the public into thinking that these innocent and unprotected human embryos would receive no pain or harm during the process of extracting their stem cells. This was yet another false claim. Even when taking particular stem cells from the embryo, it leads to an outcome that the embryo cannot survive, thus, not having a percentage rate of survival contrary to popular belief meant that the human embryos were killed and cloned (Klusendorf).
Also, the advocates for the stem cell research praise that the embryo is not a human life form, but an organism with a group of stem cells. This is another false claim. “Embryos don't come from stem cells; they are living human beings that have stem cells” (Klusendorf). “And extracting these cells is lethal for the tiny human subject” (Klusendorf). It’s so lethal that it has an impossible way of surviving. It’s simple. You can have the embryo in its stage of life or destroy it for a mere research that has proven negative and no results.
Unfortunately, most of the research that has begun has been anything but positive or proven results. Presently there is no evidence that a single stem cell, once replication has begun, has ‘the intrinsic capacity to generate a complete organism in any mammalian species’ when extracted during the blastomeric stage” (Sutherland). These particular results added to the many false claims and manipulated results that stem cell research had made their roots upon. Unethical morals, forged results, and unkept promises are just a few of the reasons why stem cell research cannot be trusted.
Moreover, with any type of research comes expenses and funding. Every new type of research needs funding in order to continue what it proposes to do. Funding for stem cell research was following in line with the recent trend of downward spiraling. The funds for this research “According to the Wall Street Journal, troubled investors who had already poured $100 billion into the biotechnology industry even though $40 billion has been lost” (Smith). Investors have to look for a more promising research which stem cell research does not provide. Results, leading in poor numbers have led to almost more than half of the funding for stem cell research to go down the drain. The money that was lost could have been given to recent research that has proved growing and positive results.
Even having the results to be proven inaccurate and false, the scientists behind stem cell research wanted to make the public think otherwise. Ronald D.G. McKay, another leading stem cell scientist proceeded to continue feeding the minds of the general public. Leading to convey that the public “needs a fairy tale” (Cook). This type of statement provides a false pathway to the general public to believe that there is still hope for many of their ill loved ones. In fact, it gives them false hope. It gives them a promise which the scientists know may very well, not happen at all.
In conclusion, it is evident from the discussion that it has been a downhill discussion of problematic turns and false claims. This hurts the current human life than it promotes. Reaching results that are false and untrustworthy, make a huge inconsideration for the well-being of the adult intaking them. I believe causing more harm to an adult human is not what most people are looking for. They are looking for a cure, which this type of research does not provide. It does not even provide a trail to find a cure. As seen from the discussion, the testing that is being conducted is documented inaccurately. There seems but only one alternative route for this research. That route is to stop it overall. It has made many claims and promises but has not over the past ten years even made a dent in our society, hence the reason why I am opposing the stem cell research.
As we look forward to the expansion and breakthroughs of different types of research. We look at the results of highly successful research. Cancer has been the main contender for breakthrough research. Even though there hasn’t been a cure for cancer, there has been more positive and proven results leading to finding one. This leads to the new institutes being made to treat cancer patients and funding for the research to prove useful. Stem cell research did not make the impact it set out to build. Instead of rebuilding the cracked foundation on which it was founded, it continued to build on the faulty foundation in which it had started. We as a society have to differentiate between what results have been trustworthy and the results that are helping promote the promising future of health in our world.
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