News Release

Stem Cells and Beyond

RUTH HUBBARD
Professor emerita of biology at Harvard University and author of Exploding the Gene Myth, Hubbard is on the board of the Council for Responsible Genetics. She said today: “The most immediate problem with Bush’s stance is that by saying there will be no federal funding for initial stem cell research, that means there will be no federal regulation. Germany, Britain and other countries have laws that regulate this kind of research. The existence of excess embryos for research is a result of the lack of regulation of the U.S. fertility industry. As a result, we have already seen the biotech companies beginning to produce embryos for research that are not intended to relieve infertility. This was not addressed by Mr. Bush.”

QUENTIN YOUNG, M.D.
National coordinator of Physicians for a National Health Program, Young said today: “Bush’s statement on stem cell research is the latest in a series of doublespeak pronouncements where the fig leaf of high morality — the sanctity of life — poorly conceals his fundamental ethic: a commitment to corporate exploitation and commodification of everything. There are serious issues of experimentation, but none of the ethical questions are resolved if for-profit models are not only permitted but favored, often to the exclusion of serious not-for-profit scientific experimentation. If this disastrous trend — which commenced with the patenting of elements in the human gnome and is now exploding — is not reversed, it holds dire consequences for the human experience.”
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THOMAS NAGY
Nagy is author of “The Secret Behind the Sanctions: How the U.S. Intentionally Destroyed Iraq’s Water Supply,” the just-published cover story in the September issue of The Progressive. He is associate professor of expert systems at George Washington University. Nagy said today: “Last night, Bush said that he ‘worries about a culture that devalues life.’ If he wants to show his commitment to the idea of the sanctity of life and save the lives of thousands of children each month, all he has to do is tell the U.S. delegation to the UN to stop withholding from Iraq materials needed to rehabilitate the water treatment systems that were disabled as a result of the U.S. bombing and sanctions.”
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KATHY KELLY
Kelly is co-founder of Voices in the Wilderness, which is currently conducting unauthorized delivery of medicines to Iraq. She and several of her colleagues have recently begun a 40-day fast in front of the U.S. Mission to the UN. She said today: “We still await an answer to an April 2001 letter to Bush signed by scores of religious groups and leaders calling for the lifting of the sanctions, which have been in effect for 11 years.”
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GINA COPLON-NEWFIELD
Coordinator of the U.S. Campaign to Ban Landmines, a coalition of over 500 groups, Coplon-Newfield said today: “One hundred and forty countries have joined the Mine Ban Treaty, but the U.S. has not. Eighteen thousand people are maimed or killed from landmines each year, and most of the victims are civilians. If President Bush is concerned with the value of life, then we urge him to join an agreement that has already begun saving lives.”
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For more information, contact at the Institute for Public Accuracy:
Sam Husseini, (202) 347-0020; David Zupan, (541) 484-9167