e_moon60 (e_moon60) wrote,

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Writer's Block: Big Debates

Do you think stem cell research is good, bad, or dangerous? Should it be funded by the government?
Everything's dangerous, including eating, breathing, walking....not doing something (not eating, not breathing, not walking) has its own dangers.  So research, even if dangerous, can be just as dangerous NOT to do.  Stem-cell research is less dangerous to the public than many other kinds (atmospheric testing of nuclear weapons, for instance) and the potential benefits are high.

Stem cell research is, like many other kinds of biological research, essential to understanding how living things "work."  It has high potential for advancing therapeutics, and thus falls into the "not just good but important to do" category.

Basic research should be funded by the government as well as private entities, because private entities often choose to use research results for private profit, not the welfare of the whole.  Research is scientific infrastructure, the way that roads and bridges and water treatment plants are physical infrastructure.  We need to support that infrastructure.   In a straitened research budget, stem cell research might not have priority over something else--but if there were funds enough, it certainly should be publicly funded.

Tags: government funding, stem cell research, writer's block

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