May 20, 2008

Light Fuse, Stand Back

Sigh...attempting to extend human life by cheapening it.

British scientists will be allowed to research devastating diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s using human-animal embryos, after the House of Commons rejected a ban yesterday.

An amendment to the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill that would have outlawed the creation of “human admixed embryos” for medical research was defeated in a free vote by a majority of 160, preserving what Gordon Brown regarded as a central element of the legislation.

The Government is braced for defeat today, however, on a separate clause that would scrap the requirement that fertility clinics consider a child’s need for a father before treating patients. MPs will also consider amendments tonight that would cut the legal limit for abortion from 24 weeks to 22 or 20 weeks.

A second amendment, which would have banned the creation of “true hybrids” made by fertilising an animal egg with human sperm, or vice-versa, was also defeated yesterday by a majority of 63. Another free vote last night was expected to approve the use of embryo-screening to create “saviour siblings” suitable to donate umbilical cord blood to sick children.

It would all be cruelly funny if it were not so horrid. It's been a long time since I last read the Screwtape Letters, but I've got to believe there's some correspondence in there covering this sort of thing.

Posted by Robert at May 20, 2008 10:55 AM | TrackBack