2008.10.08 Ryan Shadbolt: Prop. 2

Written by David Green.

In Mary Marsh Gautz’s letter (Oct. 1), she invites Michigan citizens to research Proposal 2, which will appear on the Nov. 4 ballot.  I fully support her invitation, but I feel that Proposal 2 may be painted unfairly by Gautz and the MiCause.com website that she cites.

In fact, the proposal does not allow for unregulated, unrestricted research on human embryos. Rather, the proposal restricts embryo research to the following limits: the embryos are created for fertility purposes, are not suitable for implantation or are in excess of clinical needs, would be discarded unless used for research, and were donated by the person seeking fertility treatment.  In addition, stem cells cannot be taken from embryos more than 14 days after cell division begins and any sale or purchase of embryos is prohibited.

Others against Proposal 2 may claim that embryonic stem cell research is already allowed when it is funded by private funds and may ask, why should we allow state taxpayer money to pay for this research?  Stem cell research is not my field of study, but as someone who has been frequently funded by research dollars, I can say that at least in my experience, the overwhelming majority of funds for scientific research comes from federal and state sources funded by taxpayers.  Private funds are only a drop in the bucket.

I just want to repeat that the embryos in question here are those intended for, but not used, in fertility purposes. These embryos will simply be discarded.  Therefore, no lives whatsoever will be saved by turning down Proposal 2. As stated by Gautz, there are other options available besides using embryonic stem cells, and those options have promise, but if we also utilize these otherwise wasted embryos, we increase our potential that much more of finding treatments for life-threatening conditions.  In other words, a vote in favor for Proposal 2, is indeed a vote for life.

– Ryan P. Shadbolt

West Bloomfield, Michigan

  • Cecil
    THE MAYOR—Cecil Schoonover poses with a collection of garden gnomes that mysteriously arrive and disappear from his property. Along with the gnomes, someone created the sign stating that he is the Mayor of Gnomesville. He hasn’t yet tracked down the people involved in the prank, but he’s having a good time with the mystery.
  • Front.rest
    TAKE A BREAK—Last Wednesday’s session of Stair District Library’s Summer Reading Program ended with a quiet period in a class presented by yoga instructor Melany Gladieux of Toledo. Children learned a variety of yoga poses in the main room at the library, then finished off the session relaxing. Additional photos are on page 7. Area children are invited to visit the library today when the Michigan Science Center presents a flight program at 11 a.m. and roller coasters at 1 p.m.
  • Front.batter
    THE DERBY—Tyler “Smallpox” Flakne of Minnesota’s Home Run League All-Stars goes for the fence Friday night during the National Wiffle League Association’s home run derby in Morenci. This year the wiffleball national tournament moved from Dublin, Ohio, to Morenci’s Wakefield Park. During the derby, competitors had two minutes to hit as many home runs as possible. The winner this year finished with 21. See page 6 and 7 for additional photos.
  • Front.green Screen
    OUT OF THIS WORLD—Elizabeth McFadden and Elise Christle pose in front of the green screen as VolunTeen Noah Gilson makes them appear as though they are standing on the Moon. More photos from the Stair District Library’s NASA @ My Library program are on page 12.
  • Front.snake
    Lannis Smith of the Leslie Science and Nature Center in Ann Arbor shows off a python last week at Stair District Library's Summer Reading Program.
  • Front.fireworks
    FIREWORKS erupt Saturday night over Morenci’s Wakefield Park during the waning hours of the Town and Country Festival. Additional festival photos are inside.
  • Pipeline Spread
    LINED UP—Lengths of pipe were put in place last week along the route of the Rover natural gas pipeline that will stretch from Defiance, Ohio, to Ontario, Canada. Topsoil was removed before the pipes were laid out. The 42-inch diameter pipeline is scheduled for completion in November.
  • Front.rock Study
    ROCKHOUNDS—From the left, Joseph McCullough, Sean Pagett and Jonathan McCullough peer through hand lenses to study rocks. The project is part of Morenci Elementary School’s summer camp that continues into August.

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