Modern Conservatism and Stem Cell Research

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The ethics of stem cell research remain the subject of fierce debate; more particularly, there is a persistent notion that a technological ability to do something
must be viewed through a larger ethical prism. …

Introduction

Policy on Stem Cell Research"). The compromise failed to satisfy all of the interested Conservative groups and seems more of a stop-gap policy within Conservatism than a long-term resolution. The debate has hardly subsided.

This essay will examine how Conservative thought ought to resolve the ethical dilemmas involved in stem cell research; more specifically, this essay will examine the religious dimensions of the debate and whether Conservative thought can be reconciled with stem cell research. To this end, this essay will define what is meant by stem cell research and then discuss the extant to which the religious orientation of modern Conservatives is consistent or inconsistent with stem cell research.

As a preliminary matter, it must be noted that stem cells are not new. It is the manipulation of stem cells that has raised a myriad of ethical issues. Most simply, as defined by the National Institutes of Health, the biomedical organization vested with executing American health policy regarding stem cell research, stem cells are, "Cells with the ability to divide for indefinite periods in culture and to give rise to specialized cells" ("Stem Cell Basics"). However, and of critical importance, there are two types of stem cells. These are embryonic stem cells and adult stem cells. ...
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