Monday, October 30, 2006

Missouri "stem cell initiative" explicitly allows "cloning"

Been a lot of talk over this, Michael J. Fox videos, yadda, yadda, yadda.

Well, I decided to actually read the full text of this initiative and stop relying on what all the talking head, pundits, politicians, prognisticators, prevaricators, movie stars, etc were saying.

Here is what the text in 38(d)2(1) says regarding cloning:
"(1) No person may clone or attempt to clone a human being."
Looks like it explicitly prohibits "cloning" right?


Anyone casually flipping through the proposed legislation will be totally fooled into believing that it prohibits cloning.

Here's why -- the initiative doesn't use word definitions as the common man and general public understand them. This is a very common trick politicians use to fool people about the real nature of a particular piece of legislation. They use words and phrases people know and understand intuitively, but then include other language in the legislation to ALTER and CHANGE the legal definition of those words and phrases so they legally mean something else entirely.

This is exactly what is going on with the Missouri initiative. Here's the kicker down at the bottom of the initiative [38(d)6(2)] where "cloning" becomes explicitly permitted by virtuse of redefinitional hokus pokus:
(2) “Clone or attempt to clone a human being” means to implant in a uterus or attempt to implant in a uterus anything other than the product of fertilization of an egg of a human female by a sperm of a human male for the purpose of initiating a pregnancy that could result in the creation of a human fetus, or the birth of a human being.
As you can plainly see, they've redefined the phrase: "Clone or attempt to clone a human being" to be legally something TOTALLY DIFFERENT than what ordinary people would interpret it to be.

What we have here is explicit permission to clone as long as the resultant cells are not "implanted in a uterus". Grow'em in a petri dish for as long as you like. Let the resultant cell blob grow as large as it can get. You could even grow it to term into a full blown ready to be born human as long as you avoided ever putting it in a uterus.

Why this shifty redefinitional legedermain? Obviously the proponents of this initiative full well intend to have cloning proceed at full speed if it is passed. If not, they wouldn't have felt the need to include the redefinitional weasle words giving "clone or attempt to clone" a completely different meaning than common usage might suggest.

Simply put, the proponents of the initiative are flat out lying in their public presentations about the nature of this initiative, and when someone lies like this, they do it because they know people won't accept it if they tell the truth about it.

For the record, I have no moral problems with cloning or stem cell research. I would love for someone to clone me up a fresh pancreas if they could.

My problem is with the intentionally deceptive presentation of this initiative. I don't like it when people try to con the public.


jill bryant said...

You might want to add that MJF was not campaigning for the initiative. If you watch the video, you will see he is also against cloning...

Purple Avenger said...

If Fox wasn't pitching for the initiative, he chose a very fortuitous point in time to make that video for McCaskill.

I don't believe in coincidences like that any more than I believe in the easter bunny.

He may not believe in cloning, but that's exactly what he's going to get if this deceptively presented initiative passes.

MJF is pitching using sentiment, but he should read the gory details of the initiative to see if the sentiment matches up with the reality.

The written words rather than sentiment matter very much when it comes to legislation.

Caveat Emptor

Little Miss Chatterbox said...

Excellent post and thanks for the trackback. This is exactly one of my main problems with this amendment. They are flat out lying to Missourians. SCNT is the definition of cloning and it has nothing to do with whether the embryos are implanted in the womb or not.

The other area where they are completely lieing is that they aren't going to pay women for their eggs. Just like it says on page 1 that there is no cloning but there is on page 3. On page 1 it says women won't be paid but on page 3 it says that they will.

Like Robert Novak says this is the biggest scam he's ever seen in politics. And to say that in the political world is a big deal indeed.

And I'm glad that whether you agree with it or not you are upset that we are being deceived. I'm hoping many others will feel the same.

And as for Michael J. Fox he admitted yesterday that he hasn't even read Missouri's amendment. That might've been something he wanted to do before putting his reputation on the line for Claire McCaskill.

jill bryant said...

MJF has another goal in getting the McCaskill which has nothing to do with the Easter Bunny. He is looking for enough votes so they can get a veto-proof bill through the legislature (since Bush used his one veto against this.) He looked into the races and saw where anti and pro stem cell candidates could swing the vote.

The fact there is also a ballot is on the measure shows this is becoming an issue to be faced by the American public.

Purple Avenger said...

The fact there is also a ballot is on the measure shows this is becoming an issue to be faced by the American public.

I agree. That this initiative is so deceptively worded doesn't speak well for the motivations of its proponents though.

jill bryant said...

And I agree with that. Why should you have to practically perform written surgery to figure out what is going on with some of our political propositions?

Purple Avenger said...

Plain, "unredefinined" language, would result in the voters understanding the prop ;->

Almost invariably, there's some shadowy special interest group behind the props. In Florida, a lot of them are driven by land developers masking themselves behind cozy names like Taxpayer Fairness Union[I made that up] or similar nonsense that hides their true motivations.

Anonymous said...

HA it passed

Purple Avenger said...

HA it passed

Beware of what you wish for -- you may get it.