Misleading the Disabled Community

Date: 05/01/2002

The following excerpt is from a piece by James Kelly that was run in the Detroit News 4/28/02. Mr. Kelly is a patient advocate with spinal cord injury (SCI); he is paralyzed from the waist down and has been working with researchers and foundations seeking a cure for SCI.

America’s disabled and the public are being flagrantly misled concerning the immediate and long-range therapeutic potential of cloning. I have no doubt that [Christopher] Reeve wants to get out of his wheelchair as badly as I want to walk away from mine, but regarding this issue he is sadly misinformed.

The tragedy is that valuable public and private research funds may end up being diverted to basic embryonic stem cell and cloning research with little clinical potential, to the detriment of proven and further developed avenues that could help both of us during our lifetimes. If that happens, Reeve will have more to answer for than the destruction of some embryos.

(Mr. Kelly’s entire op-ed can be found at http://detnews.com/2002/editorial/0204/28/a17-476161.htm)