Focus on the Family

Focus on the Family Urges Congress to Ban Human Cloning

Date: 11/26/2001

November 26, 2001

Colorado Springs- Carrie Gordon Earll, Bioethics Analyst for Focus on the Family’s public policy division, released the following statement in response to yesterday’s announcement that Advanced Cell Technology, a Massachusetts biotechnology firm, has successfully cloned the first human embryo:

“This is human experimentation, pure and simple. To say that these embryos are ‘cellular’ life, but not human life is to engage in a game of semantics. Every one of us started out as embryos. To redefine life in any other terms puts all life at risk.

“While this for-profit corporation claims it does not intend to clone humans for birth, other groups do. And they will use this research to that end. How many embryos will be created and destroyed before scientists perfect these experimental methods-methods with unknown results?”

Advanced Cell Technology also said it hopes to grow human embryos so that stem cells can be extracted for medical research-a process that destroys the embryo.

“Creating life for the sole purpose of destroying it is unethical and unnecessary,” said Earll. “The medical community should continue to advance the research progress already underway, using adult stem cells, as well as stem cells from placenta and umbilical cord blood, that offer promise in healing the body without destroying human life.

“The pace of science is rapidly passing the social bounds of ethics and morality. It is time for public policy to set reasonable limits to advance the preservation of life and protect human dignity.

“We urge the Senate to act quickly and pass the Weldon-Brownback Human Cloning Bill, already approved by the House.”