On July 19, President Bush signed the “Fetus Farming Prohibition Act of 2006,” a law that prohibits growing human embryos in animals or humans for research.
Did you think fetus farming was a figment of someone’s imagination? A right-wing scare tactic, perhaps?
Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich’s 2005 embryonic stem cell research executive order included “payment” for “transplantation, or implantation of [embryonic] tissue,” with no age restriction. It also included “payment” for “cadaveric fetal tissue,” or dead fetuses.
In other words, Blagojevich was planning to harvest a new crop in Illinois, fetuses, in uterine farms.
In October 2005, bioethicist Robert George of Princeton noted in The Weekly Standard that his home state of New Jersey had also passed legislation authorizing the harvest of “cadaveric fetal tissue.”
“What the bill envisages and promotes, in other words,” wrote George, “is fetus farming.”
George theorized that because week-old embryos, the age currently being experimented upon, have a propensity to grow into cancerous tumors, researchers were beginning to look toward older preborn babies.
At 8 weeks gestation, basic structures for all body systems are established. All remaining time in the uterus is spent growing and refining tissues and organs.
“Because the developmental process stabilizes cells (which is why we are not all masses of tumors),” wrote George, “it is likely true that stem cells, tissues, and organs harvested from human beings at, say, 16 or 18 weeks or later could be used in the treatment of diseases.”
Those plans have now been shot to hell, where they belong, making embryonic stem cell research ever more implausible.

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