Marlowe's Shade

Monday, December 12, 2005

Weekend Round-up

Friday was a snow day [working but no time to post] and my inbox was full of all kinds of euthanasia-related stories this morning.

The Czech Republic is struggling with the question of legalizing euthanasia. President Vaclav Klaus could sign a bill effectively de-criminalizing the practice. Based on this statement, it's easy to see why he is confused:

"The endless prolongation of some people's lives seems to be bad. However, it is also important who asks for euthanasia, who is supposed to carry it out and under what conditions," Klaus said.

Quote from Dutch parents who euthanized their daughter: "I'm convinced that if we meet again somewhere in heaven," her father said, "she'll tell us we reached the most perfect solution."

On a related note, the Dutch actually jailed a 73 year old right-to-die activist [with the inappropriate name of Jan Hilarius] for committing euthanize, reminding us that it is technically still illegal! Doctors are heavily protected from prosecution for euthanasia, and it seems that the law is being used to protect their privileged position as official executioners.

They are routinely ignored by the mainstream media and reports of new adult stem cell cures are so common these day that even pro-life advocates can take them for granted. But this report of child whose life was saved by cord blood stem cells is amazing.

And finally, an American and Korean university will investigate whether cloning researcher Dr Hwang faked his results:

Seoul National University and the University of Pittsburgh say they will launch investigations into embryonic stem cell research and cloning efforts of Hwang Woo-suk to make sure none of the results in his studies were fabricated. The probes follow complaints that Hwang's team submitted the wrong photos to the medical journal Science to accompany an article on the research results.

But based on this, I'm not expecting any objectivity:

SNU convened a meeting of senior officials at Hwang's request and agreed to conduct an inquiry. Hwang is a veterinary professor at the college. "We have decided to re-examine the research because Dr. Hwang himself wants it," Roe Jung-hye, chief of research policy office of the university, told reporters after the meeting, according to a Korean Herald news report. Roe said Hwang asked for the probe after the allegations came forward that he fabricated some of his research.

This sounds more promising:

Meanwhile, the University of Pittsburgh is also investigating the team's research because of the involvement of Gerald Schatten, who resigned from Hwang's team when the egg donation cover-up came to light.

I'm a little more confident that the university will be eager to avoid any taint if Dr Hwang's research turns out to be fraudulent.
papijoe 8:57 AM