I am, by and large, pretty conservative. For most of my life I considered myself to be a Republican, but a few years back I came to realize that I am much closer to being a Libertarian. Perhaps more telling is that I am fiscal conservative but a social liberal. For example, I support a small, highly efficient federal government. At the same time, I support same-sex marriage and abortion rights.
But, as even an extreme left-winger can imagine, my mix of conservative and liberal ideas doesn’t sit very well with most of my right-wing friends.
Take this article as an example:
I know a little about medicine. My daughter knows more, and it was Debbie who actually brought this article to my attention. Her question was a simple one, too…”Mom, why would anyone oppose such technology? Why would anyone, for some silly political ideology, condemn thousands—maybe millions—of people to die when this offers a very real possibility of curing them?” (And yes, Debbie really does talk that way.)
When this topic comes up and my extreme conservative friends start talking about why the use of stem cells is wrong, I get the urge to smile, reach across the table, and bitch-slap them.
In many conversations I’ve had since this article came out, my right-wing colleagues have made comments about those needing new livers often are in that position due to drug or alcohol abuse, so let’s take that away from the table. I’m told (by Debbie) that a pancreas should be no more difficult to “grow” than a liver, so we’ll make the jump to a different organ and a different disorder caused by its failure.
Diabetes is caused by a failure of the pancreas to produce insulin. Yeah, that’s the VERY short version. In some cases, diabetes can be triggered by obesity, but often it just sort of happens. We’ll ignore family history for now. There have been some successes in transplanting a pancreas into a diabetic. So, what if we could “grow” a new organ for people with diabetes?
I haven’t looked it up, but it seems that the costs of transplanting a pancreas into someone would be less than the long-term care for that same person left with the bum organ. After all, diabetes impacts every system in the body.
I think this comes under the social liberal part of my politics…
I support stem cell research.
What say you?