New investigative report is published
In December of 2001 a billboard appeared across Ireland. It featured then Taoiseach, Bertie Ahern, and his colleague Micheál Martin, then Minister for Health, and called on these politicians not to allow experiments on human embryos to take place in Ireland.
Produced by Youth Defence, the billboard's message was criticised as outlandish. But it was, in fact, a prescient campaign, since the push to legalise embryo research in this country had already begun.
As we will see, for the past ten years, a small but politically powerful group of people have attempted to introduce human embryonic stem research and cloning to Ireland. Despite growing public opposition, that's still their goal.
This report identifies who those people are, and who appointed them to positions of power. It also exposes how science and ethics are being trampled down in an unseemly rush to legalise experiments on human life.
Important questions are asked and explored: Why did Micheál Martin and Mary Harney create quangos which were absolutely stacked against the human embryo? What role did the EU play in pushing for embryo research? Why was the opposition of a majority of UCC academics to allowing embryonic stem cell research in the university covered up? What link exists between the Governing Body of UCC and global pharmaceutical corporations that are financially invested in embryo research? Who are the companies pouring billions into research on embryonic stem cells? What's the identity of the "vested interests" funding the secretive Irish Stem Cell Foundation? And why did Mary Harney suggest that embryonic stem cell research could take place in Ireland if the embryos had firstly been destroyed in another country?
These are important questions because the answers signify whether we respect human life, and whether we are, in turn, respected by our government. Stem cell research is hugely promising, and may lead to cell-based therapies to treat some of mankind's most debilitating diseases. But the fact remains that the real progress - producing treatments that actually work for patients - has been made in adult stem cell research, not in research that involves killing human embryos. One recent study showed that over 50,000 patients are now being treated with adult stem cell therapies every year.
In fact, the good news from ethical stem cell research has become so pervasive that the headline in a recent report from the Associated Press read: "Adult stem cell research far ahead of embryonic".
That's also a key finding of this report: lethal research on embryos destroys human life and has failed miserably to help patients. It goes without saying that destroying innocent human life is, in itself, always morally wrong.
That moral view is shared by a very significant majority of Irish people, whose opposition to embryo research has been recorded in consecutive opinion polls. Yet, as this report shows, the opinion of the people has been deliberately and arrogantly ignored by elitist political quangos hellbent on pursuing their own agenda.
In the coming months the new Minister for Health may bring forward legislation on the human embryo. Their actions will tell whether she believes the people, or the elite, are in charge.
Email the Life Institute on info 'at' thelifeinstitue.net to get a copy of Join the Dots.