Monday, November 29, 2021

Opinion

OPINION

Good thing

After weeks of increasingly heated debate that has threatened to obscure the real issue at hand, President Bush is close to making a decision on whether the government should pay for research on stem cells extracted from human embryos. Stem cells are found in embryos and some adult tissues and can develop into brain cells, liver cells, heart cells and other parts of the body. Embryonic stem cells have generated great excitement among scientists because they are believed to have the potential to grow into any cell or tissue in the body, and consequently may be able to repair and replace damaged tissues and organs. Although it is possible to extract stem cells from adult tissue, embryonic cells have unlimited ability to proliferate and form new tissue in the laboratory, making them superior for research use. While advocates of federal spending for such research say the promise of new treatments or cures for Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease and diabetes is more than enough to justify government support; the Roman Catholic Church, anti-abortion activists and many conservatives object to using stem cells extracted from embryos, even those from fertility clinics that might otherwise be discarded. Despite the opposition, the White House is reportedly leaning toward support of a plan that would permit government-funded research to use discarded embryos created during infertility treatments. This plan would be similar to the one already put in place by former President Bill Clinton that allows federal funds to support research on stem cells created during fertility treatments. Although this is a no-win situation for the Bush administration, it will please the most people and placate the most interests by adopting some form of this idea. While the Catholic Church can be said to represent the views of a significant percentage of the American people, the majority of Americans do not prescribe to its conservative ideology. Anti-abortion activists are also found on the extreme side of the political spectrum, and it has been shown in many public opinion polls that most people do not agree with their views on abortion. Likewise, the opinions of overly conservative politicians are not always in sync with those of the general populace, as evidenced by the focus on the moderate voter prevalent in last year’s presidential election. In fact, some of Capitol Hill’s most right-wing voices have spoken in support of stem cell research - including South Carolina Sen.

OPINION

Older generation ponders new technology

I felt really old the other day. I’m sure it had nothing to do with attending my friend’s bachelor party the night before, but more with a conversation I had with a few friends about old-school comedians, and buying comedy albums (yup, vinyl records). I was telling the story about the first album I ever bought, at a drug store near my home in 1982, which was Steve Martin’s “Let’s Get Small.” One of the tracks was called “Smoking,” and the big joke was “Mind if I smoke?

OPINION

First steps

The Red Cedar River is about to get a face-lift and it’s a good thing too, because it’s been getting pretty ugly lately. Last fall, researchers found unusually high levels of E.

OPINION

Slow down

We’re all getting pretty ticked off by drivers on cell phones, but new legislation in New York doesn’t consider the many implications of banning phone calls while driving. The state Assembly passed a bill Monday prohibiting drivers from holding a cell phone to their ears.

OPINION

Bush is pushing questionable facts

It is extremely disappointing that President Bush, supposedly representing all Americans, calls on “science” only to support his particular views, while claiming a future world view superior to that in Europe where informed critics are raising questions.

OPINION

Students should fight tuition tax

While the state budget is not yet finalized, it looks increasingly likely that the Legislature will not be able provide adequate funding for Michigan’s 15 public universities.

OPINION

Blame is easy to lay, not so quick to stay

Rumor has it our tuition at MSU may rise by 10 percent. Coupled with the rising costs of room and board, books and other supplies necessary for a successful college experience, this news of a likely tuition increase is the last thing many want to hear. So whose fault is it anyway?

OPINION

Chivalry useless against kidney shot

I’ve never really thought of myself as “macho.” I don’t wear boots or chop down trees, I don’t chug a six-pack of beer in the span of a couple minutes and I don’t attempt to fine-tune the reverberation in my belches.

OPINION

Guns in school no practical solution

In two years I will be a teacher in one of our nation’s public schools. I was therefore appalled to read it is even being suggested by some that we place metal detectors randomly throughout schools and arm our school officers with guns (“ Officers discuss school violence,” SN 6/20). I firmly believe people, including students of all ages, will behave according to how they are treated.

OPINION

The way out

After years of struggle by Yugoslavian authorities, NATO officials and the international community, Slobodan Milosevic is one step closer to being extradited to the War Crimes Tribunal in The Hague, Netherlands. Yugoslav police last month announced the discovery of evidence linking former President Milosevic to possible war crimes during the 1999 Kosovo conflict, and on Saturday the Yugoslav Cabinet voted 8-1 to approve a decree paving the way for his expected journey to the United Nations tribunal. Police say they have found at least two mass graves in Serbia, presumably filled with the bodies of ethnic Albanians. The decision to extradite comes two years after the United Nations indicted Milosevic for crimes against humanity during his crackdown on ethnic Albanians in Kosovo, which ended after the NATO bombing campaign in 1999.

OPINION

Prison life isnt meant to be fun

The editorial criticizing the Michigan penal system (“Hard time,” SN 6/18) for imposing strict visiting policies is ignorant and obviously lacks the understanding of what purpose a prison serves.

OPINION

Big city lights lead to students enlightenment

About the time I was 7, I was sure about a few things in life. I knew firsthand I was put on this earth to be a star on the television show “Kids Incorporated.” Around the age of 11, these dreams were crushed with the realization that it might not happen.On the bright side, at 21 years old I am living out my other childhood dream: living in New York City.

OPINION

Idea is all wet

The Michigan Senate is making a grave mistake by allowing oil drilling in the Great Lakes. The Senate passed two bills supporting drilling in May, with backers split evenly along party lines.