President Bush says stem cell research is immoral. I guess pre-emptive invasion of foreign countries without valid reasons, the killing and maiming of thousands of innocent children, an official policy of psychological and physical torture, being the largest seller of arms and weapons of war in the world, tax cuts for the very wealthy, and cutting of services to the poor and needy are not!
Ironically, I think President Bush is one of the most immoral men to ever occupy the White House. His groveling and sucking up to the very rich and the Religious Right is nauseating. He seems to take pride in stating he doesn't read newspapers.
I'm sure all his erroneous information is tenderly spoon-fed to him by his "moral" advisers (Dick Cheney, Karl Rove, Donald Rumsfeld, etc.), Mr. Bush's God, and Mr. Bush's spiritual advisers. Science, intelligence, compassion, and reason mean nothing to this President and his administration. Fear, secrecy, ignorance, bullying, and hatred rule the day.
Shame on the people who voted for Mr. Bush in 2004. How sad that 20 percent to 30 percent of the people would vote for someone just because that person states he's a "born again"Christian, and says "God tells me what to do" while definitely acting in an unchristian manner (example: Mr. Bush signs the John McCain-sponsored anti-torture bill but reserves the right to torture).
Thanks to this President, America now stands for all the wrong things at the wrong time in history.
With regard to your July 20 editorial castigating President Bush for vetoing federally funded stem cell research, abortion law cannot be used to definitively settle the "non-entity" status of a blastocyst.
Roe vs. Wade did not settle the argument as to when life begins. Roe is based on the idea that two lives cannot have equal claim to the body of one person. The rights of the woman hosting the fetus trump the rights of the fetus with regard to state-imposed protections.
Further, while the courts have made abortion a right, Congress and most states have "religiously" avoided making abortion the official policy of the land through legislation. Federally funded abortions can only be had for those reasons that abortions were granted prior to the Roe decision - life-threatening medical conditions, rape, and incest.
Second, if stem cell research is really the medical manna from heaven that everyone expects, there's no reason for the feds to inject their money into the research equation at all. The private capital market will generate the research funds necessary to discover a "sure thing."
Blastocyst research with private money is currently legal. The fact that the private market is not responding may be a better indicator of what a stem cell future holds than the predictions of hyper-ventilating, self-promoting scientists looking for a stipend.
Third, many of us are still waiting for the promised breakthroughs in cancer and AIDS treatments that were promised long ago. Will stem cell therapies arrive in time to protect us from an avian flu pandemic?
What did we get for all the federal money poured into syn-fuel research? Ethanol, something man has made for 3,000 years.
And what about federal fusion research? When is it going to start producing electricity too cheap to meter?
So President Bush has finally vetoed a bill, the first of his presidency. And what horrible bill warranted this unprecedented act? Stem cell research.
Scientists are in clear agreement that stem cell research represents nearly unlimited potential for curing such diseases as juvenile diabetes and Alzheimer's disease.
Despite the enormous potential of stem cell research, and in complete defiance of the 66 percent of Americans who support such research, the President finally decided to veto the bill.
This act is hardly surprising because Mr. Bush and his gang have already made clear their hostility to science and empirical reason. Against the advice of the FDA they have blocked over-the-counter sales of the "plan b" contraceptive.
They force high school health classes to teach abstinence-only education despite the clear, unequivocal evidence that this approach is completely ineffective in reducing teen sex and actually makes the situation worse.
They seek to place all sorts of restrictions on the right of a woman to make her own deeply personal decisions when it comes to reproductive health.
These are also the same people who want to interfere in other medical situations, as was made clear by the Terri Schiavo fiasco. And of course, there is their fervent desire to teach the Bible in science classes.
I wish I could say I was surprised by the Republicans' hostility to science and reason, but their track record is quite clear. I'm hoping that some of the voters who previously supported the Republicans are outraged by this nonsense, and will jump the fence to join the reality-based community.
I commend the refuse collectors of Toledo. I was fortunate not to have suffered from the flooded basement problem that many area Toledo residents experienced recently.
On my drive into work I noticed one particular neighborhood that had tons of refuse, including furniture that was set out by the curb for the refuse men to pick up. To my amazement it disappeared just as quickly as it was placed there.
I think these behind-the-scenes workers deserve a big applause because there aren't many of us who could handle such an unappealing, thankless job as a refuse collector.
Too often we forget to thank the people who deserve it the most.
I am grateful to all of Toledo's refuse collectors for the fine job they did after the recent flooding and also for the work they do every day to keep our city clean.
I feel compelled to comment on my experience at the Toledo City Council hearing on the minimum habitability legislation that would assure properties would meet at least a minimum standard for livability at the time of sale.
Proponents of the legislation worked on the council-appointed task force with the opposition who represented business interests. We made concession after concession to the opposition, believing something was better than nothing. It appeared to us that the opposition could not be satisfied. However, at the last moment they agreed to what is basically before the council now. Let me be clear: All of the major points were agreed to. We met several more times on what were regarded as editorial changes. However, when the final draft was presented, we were informed that they would not support the legislation.
It is quite clear that their motives were disingenuous from the start. At the council hearing, several of those who had committed to support the legislation spoke against it. Interestingly, many things spoken against it were the very things that they asked to be included in the legislation.
Also disturbing is that speaker after speaker for the opposition presented false information that went unchallenged by council members. I would hope that members of council are able to sort out the truth from self-serving fiction.
Government has a very important role to play to protect citizens from those who would deceive. The City of Toledo also has a stake in the future of its housing stock. I believe that this legislation can and will work based on the experience of those cities that have implemented similar legislation.
To side with the powerful and rich is easy. I challenge council to take a risk and side with the vulnerable and pass the minimum habitability legislation.
Rev. Larry C. Clark
Toledo Area Ministries
I wonder how many people are griping about gas prices while they are drinking their $30 a gallon latte.
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