Clone and kill bill I

Thanks to all who answered my question yesterday: What do you think cloning is? I asked for simple and technical definitions.

clone.jpgCameron, our resident doctorate biology major, answered: "Asexual propagation. Recent attempts at animal cloning have been described as identical twins born years apart."

SH answered: "'[Y]ou are genetically copying a life form, so the end result is a life form identical to the original."

Heather4life answered: "Duplication."

Jasper answered: "[T]o produce an exact copy of."

SamanthaT answered: "[T]he process of replicating genomic material from one organism for the purpose of reproducing that organism in whole or in part."

John M. answered: "[T]he popular (media) view is that a duplication takes place... a kind of living photocopy. The reality in science is somewhat different: each cell has a nucleus with DNA surrounded by a full-gel. Cloning then is the separation of these two... plunk in a DNA of choice and voila a clone."

All good. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I think all would agree with Wikipedia's definition:

Human cloning is the creation of a genetically identical copy of an existing, or previously existing, human being or clone tissue from that individual. The term is generally used to refer to artificial human cloning; human clones in the form of identical twins are commonplace, with their cloning occurring during the natural process of reproduction....

The most successful common cloning technique in non-human mammals is the process which produced Dolly the sheep.... The process is as follows: an egg cell taken from a donor has its nucleus removed. Another cell with the genetic material to be cloned is fused with the original egg cell. In theory, this process, known as somatic cell nuclear transfer, could be applied to human beings.

Our understanding of cloning becomes important today.

degette.jpgBecause today, pro-death CO Democrat Congresswoman Diana DeGette is expected to introduce the Human Cloning Prohibition Act of 2007 on the floor of the U.S. House.

Will it be that? No. It is a sham, a phony, a lie.

In fact and incredibly, DeGette's "ban" actually authorizes human cloning experimentation. It is a clone-and-kill bill that parses by allowing human cloning for scientific experimentation but not for implantation in uteruses.

How so? DeGette has simply changed the definition of human cloning to suit her purposes.

Here is DeGette's definition of cloning:

(a) In General. - It shall be unlawful for any person -

(1) to perform or attempt to perform human cloning....

(b) Definitions. - For purposes of this section:

(1) The term 'human cloning' means the implantation of the product of human somatic cell nuclear transfer technology into a uterus or the functional equivalent of a uterus.

(2) The term 'human somatic cell nuclear transfer technology' means transferring the nuclear material of a human somantic cell into an egg cell from which the nuclear material has been removed or rendered inert.

Of the 70+ comments received yesterday in response to my question, everyone basically agreed with the scientific definition of cloning, as explained in layperson's terms by Wikipedia.

Is it acceptable to you that politicians in bed with the biotech industry change the definition? Why do they have to? Why the cover-up? Why not just say out loud what they want?


Comments:

But they never lie...

Surely we must be wrong. As well as wikipedia. And all the scientists. You know that pro-choice stands for pro-truth don't you? It has nothing to do with $$$$$!

Jill,
You have to stop with all of these false accusations! It gives our side a bad name.

First they change the definition of life, then they change the definition of fetus, then they change the definition of marriage, now they change the definition of cloning.

Do you suppose they will make an English/Pro-choice translation book soon? We're gonna need one!

Posted by: MK Author Profile Page at June 6, 2007 8:39 AM


Okay, I have a question. What is the PURPOSE of cloning? I am clueless.

Posted by: Heather4life at June 6, 2007 8:55 AM


Heather, the biotech industry needs to clone to make the "promise" and "hope" of embryonic stem cell research at all possible.

Cells from embryos are uniquely human and stand the same possibility of human therapy matches as, say, bone marrow transplants, which is remote unless from a close relative.

Only clones would provide exact organ and tissue matches for therapeutic use.

Posted by: Jill Stanek Author Profile Page at June 6, 2007 9:08 AM


Haha. MK, it's more like you'll need a pro-life/pro-choice dictionary. Both sides have their own lingo that is impossible to decipher if you try to read it in the language of your own side.

But it's all English. One thing I've learned to appreciate in France is how great the English language is to play around with. It's like a toy! My favorite ...

Posted by: Leah at June 6, 2007 9:09 AM


If they are going to clone things for the purpose of organ transplant, they would ONLY clone the organs. It's entirely possible and has even happened in controlled lab settings once or twice, from what I've read. It doesn't really have anything to do with ESCR, because those are perfectly attainable WITHOUT cloning. At least they would be if the regulations weren't so crazy. Geh.

Posted by: Erin at June 6, 2007 10:04 AM


Diana DeGette: very sneaky.....hopefully the republicans caught on to this scam and will stop it.

Posted by: jasper at June 6, 2007 10:11 AM


Hmm...from what I'm reading, she didn't really change the definition of cloning, she just confined it to a specific definition. When I think cloning, I think of an exact copy of me walking around.

The bill says it prohibits implanting a egg into a uterus, and the egg is created through SCNT - so, you can't clone a person's DNA, make an egg, then implant it to grow another human.

Of course, it's sneaky in that it leaves a rather large loophole for OTHER techniqes of cloning (although as far as I know SCNT is the only one). It also allows SCNT to be used for other purposes, such as stem cell research.

Unfortunetly, that's the way both sides work to get favorable legislation passed. I'm sure this is the reason why we have or should have very good lawyers picking this bills apart to search for hidden messages.

At least, that's my take on it.

Posted by: Stephanie at June 6, 2007 10:28 AM


This already happened in Missori, and from what I remembered it passed. I believe Michale J. Fox was supporting the bill, even though he had never read it.

Posted by: Lauren Author Profile Page at June 6, 2007 10:32 AM


Okay, well, I hate to point out the obvious, but perhaps this is just another one of those partial legislation baby steps to a larger goal. I mean, I understand that some people have huge problems with cloning, but when the SC ruled in favor of the partial birth abortion ban, we were ecstatic here. That was a successful baby step, even tho the judges specifically outlined the fact that a doctor could avoid prosecution by lethally injecting a fetus before delivery. But now, when a pro-choicer introduces a bill that eliminates a method of cloning, she is being sneaky? I dont quite grasp the concept here.

Posted by: SamanthaT at June 6, 2007 10:39 AM


I think the reason everyone is so upset is that it is easier to make a law than to change a law. So if this gets passed it will make it extremely hard to change it. Sort of like roe vs wade...while it didn't exactly state that you could have late term abortions, it didn't state that you couldn't...so when the subject came up, it involved interpreting a law that was already on the books...

Something like that.

Now the acceptable definition of cloning will be implanting the embryo in a uterus. What happens if they can actually do the cloning in utero, or what happens if they can somehow grow it eventually sans a uterus...

Posted by: MK Author Profile Page at June 6, 2007 10:54 AM


SamanthaT, 10:39a, said: "But now, when a pro-choicer introduces a bill that eliminates a method of cloning, she is being sneaky? I dont quite grasp the concept here."

Samantha, it's smoke and mirrors. They've conducted this same scam elsewhere, like MO, as Lauren said, and in my home state, IL.

Your premise that maybe they're simply taking legislative baby steps doesn't fly because there's no reason to take baby steps. The public is against cloning. The UN has come out against cloning. Most other countries have cloning bans. This isn't a political hot potato. It isn't as if we have to take back something slowly that the public is used to, either.

Posted by: Jill Stanek Author Profile Page at June 6, 2007 11:12 AM


Jill,

I really enjoy how you craft mixed signals based on one thing and another thing... in particular your foolish observations of disharmony between the CO senator's Choice Bill and Cloning bill. It's particularly ironic considering what cloning offers with respect to use and consumption of human embryos for research--no demand on IVF anymore.

Recently developed cloning techniques with mice will likely be able to provide scientific researchers with an endless supply of human embryos via cloning, thus negating the requests and donations from IVF clinics. Additionally, like other cell lines such as HeLa, if everybody is working with the same clone or genetic compliment, it reduces variation in results, makes the science more readily reproducible, and ultimately consumes fewer embryos in the long run.

Cloning has some serious ethical concerns a la "The Island" and Huxley's "Brave New World," however with proper application of universally acceptable bioethics, scientists are not likely to the one breaching the ethics... I suspect the first human clone will be a rich guy sort of trying to live forever... passing on his wealth and power to his clone.

Mostly the ignorant opposition to cloning is alarmist tripe intended to impose religious tenets (46 chromosomes and potential life = god's cherished and sacred future christian warrior needed to fight the infidels) on public policy and society... the cost will be the demise of our biotech sector which will not be able to compete with entities in other countries who aren't so constrained by policies manifest from a myopic and delusional zealots.

Posted by: Cameron at June 6, 2007 1:37 PM


Cam, 1:37p, said: "I really enjoy how you craft mixed signals based on one thing and another thing... in particular your foolish observations of disharmony between the CO senator's Choice Bill and Cloning bill."

Giving credit where it's due, NRL was who spotted DeGette's clashing bills. But stop right there. Explain exactly where NRL was wrong in its analysis?

Cam also said: "Recently developed cloning techniques with mice will likely be able to provide scientific researchers with an endless supply of human embryos via cloning,"

Explain exactly how, Cameron.

Cameron also said, "Mostly the ignorant opposition to cloning is alarmist tripe intended to impose religious tenets... future christian warrior[s]...."

Really? The UN is full of religious warriors spewing Christian tripe? These 19 countries, which signed the UN ban: Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Greece, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Luxembourg, Moldova, Norway, Portugal, Romania, San Marino, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Macedonia and Turkey?

http://cypherpunks.venona.com/date/1998/01/msg00522.html

Cam said: "scientists are not likely to the one breaching the ethics... "

Really? Like Hwang Woo-suk of S. Korea?

Posted by: Jill Stanek Author Profile Page at June 6, 2007 2:56 PM


Samantha,
Maybe this will help...
Also, if these "clones" which are often human beings aren't being implanted in a uterus to grow, then where are they going? I'd rather see them have a chance at life than just be experimental fodder! (I don't want to see them at all of course)

Australian Defense of Life
Cardinal Pell decries the slippery slope cloning

If this bill is passed, the enemies of human life will soon be back with further proposals, disguised with sweet words and promises of cures, to roll back the few remaining barriers to the regular destruction of early human life."

The bill would allow the creation of four different types of embryos. The first type of cloning (somatic cell nuclear transfer) creates embryos with only one genetic parent. The second kind of cloning would mix �the genetic material of more than two persons - which makes a human embryo with three or more genetic parents.� The third procedure to be legalized would involve �Fertilizing immature eggs taken from aborted girls with adult male sperm - which makes a human embryo with an aborted baby girl as its genetic 'mother'." The final type of cloning would create, �human-animal hybrids as a test for sperm quality - which makes an embryo with a human and an animal genetic parent.�

In response to the bill, Cardinal Pell said, "This Bill would result in there being two classes of human embryos: those created to live and those manufactured to be eliminated in research. To produce a human embryo with the express purpose of destroying it for research - as if it were a lab rat - is a perverse new direction for human experimentation.�


Posted by: MK Author Profile Page at June 6, 2007 3:17 PM


"Mostly the ignorant opposition to cloning is alarmist tripe intended to impose religious tenets (46 chromosomes and potential life = god's cherished and sacred future christian warrior needed to fight the infidels) on public policy and society... the cost will be the demise of our biotech sector which will not be able to compete with entities in other countries who aren't so constrained by policies manifest from a myopic and delusional zealots."

It's very scary that a person like Cameron is in this type of business, who knows what kind of damage he do with his abundance of arrogance.

Posted by: jasper at June 6, 2007 7:01 PM


Well predicting the "demise" of our biotech sector because of the prohibition on human cloning is exaggerated, alarmist. Our biotech sector will remain the envy of the world for a long time still. The national debt is a greater threat to our biotech sector than the cloning ban is.

I say this even though I personally support cloning embryos for research. As long as you don't grow it into a newborn, I'm fine with it. And the only reason not to grow it is that it will have a host of disabilities like Dolly the sheep. If we can overcome this difficulty I'd have no problem with reproduction by cloning.

Eventually we (some of us, anyway) will have genetically-designed children.

Posted by: SoMG at June 6, 2007 11:00 PM


The idea that a scientist should have to adjust his research in accordance with Jill Stanek's religious doctrine is fundamentally unacceptable.

Posted by: SoMG at June 6, 2007 11:14 PM


Smoggy, what do you say to the UN and and 19 countries that agree with me and have banned cloning: Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Greece, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Luxembourg, Moldova, Norway, Portugal?

Posted by: Jill Stanek Author Profile Page at June 7, 2007 7:52 AM


You're such a tool Jill,

"Smoggy, what do you say to the UN and and 19 countries that agree with me and have banned cloning:"

I got this from the link you provided. Did you read it?

"The text, which is to become a part of the European Convention on Human Rights and Biomedicine, would permit cloning of cells for research purposes."

Posted by: Cameron at June 7, 2007 8:25 AM


No, that's news to me, Cam.

Posted by: Jill Stanek Author Profile Page at June 7, 2007 8:34 AM


Cameron, the link to the 1998 article I provided was premature. I had a sense of what I was looking for but my quick googling and reading gave way to the wrong link, as it turned out.

Here's a correct link:

http://www.newscientist.com/article.ns?id=dn7120

In 2005, the UN adopted a nonbinding declaration against all forms of human cloning by a vote of 84-34 with 37 abstentions. After years of wrangling, the countries were unable to agree to an outright ban against experimental cloning, hence the declaration.

Still, these 84 countries voted against all forms of human cloning: Afghanistan, Albania, Andorra, Australia, Austria, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Belize, Benin, Bolivia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brunei Darussalam, Burundi, Chile, Comoros, Costa Rica, Cte dIvoire, Croatia, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Georgia, Germany, Grenada, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Hungary, Iraq, Ireland, Italy, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kuwait, Lesotho, Liberia, Liechtenstein, Madagascar, Malta, Marshall Islands, Mauritius, Mexico, Federated States of Micronesia, Monaco, Morocco, Nicaragua, Palau, Panama, Paraguay, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Rwanda, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Samoa, San Marino, Sao Tome and Principe, Saudi Arabia, Sierra Leone, Slovakia, Slovenia, Solomon Islands, Sudan, Suriname, Switzerland, Tajikistan, The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Timor-Leste, Trinidad and Tobago, Uganda, United Arab Emirates, United Republic of Tanzania, United States, Uzbekistan, Zambia.

http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2005/ga10333.doc.htm

Posted by: Jill Stanek Author Profile Page at June 7, 2007 10:17 AM


Jill,

you forgot the rest of the sentence:

"...all forms of human cloning inasmuch as they are incompatible with human dignity and the protection of human life."

Both vague and "non-binding." Basically, everyone is in agreement that there are legitimate advancements in science to be made, such that any sweeping ban would be foolish.

Posted by: Cameron at June 7, 2007 1:10 PM


Right, I said it was nonbinding.

"All forms of human cloning" is vague?

Cam, have you been smoking dead cloned anemones?

You're also beyond silly to claim "everyone is in agreement" to support experimental cloning when the vote was 84-34-37 against it.

Those anemones must be hallucinogenic.

Posted by: Jill Stanek Author Profile Page at June 7, 2007 2:39 PM


Jill

"Cam," I'm "smoking dead cloned anemones".... and I think I'm "hallucinating."

Maybe you shouldn't be smoking anemones Jill.

Posted by: Cameron at June 7, 2007 4:33 PM