Embryonic Adoption

RNC Chair Michael Steele is far from alone in the Republican Party among those who believe in promoting embryonic adoption.

We live in a nation where each year there are an average of about 500,000 children living in foster care, including 130,000 who are needing adoption.

Former foster children, by some accounts, make up 30 percent of the homeless population and 25 percent of the prison population, with the criterion of “aging out” of the system being the number one indicator of such a grim future.

And people are talking about promoting the adoption of embryos from fertility clinics.


I find this beyond belief.

Anyway, Obama is lifting the ban on federal funding for embryonic stem cell research, saving thousands of embryos from the incinerator. For that, I salute him.

8 comments to Embryonic Adoption

  • Paige Cunningham

    I’m puzzled by your celebration of embryos being donated for research, rather than being destroyed in the incinerator. They’re going to be destroyed in research, too, after they’ve been allowed to divide for several days. Then, the group of cells in the inner mass will be “disaggregated”…that means they will be torn apart to get at the cells researchers want. The embryo is destroyed either way. Not persuaded that either destiny is a positive option, especially from the embryo’s point of view.

  • Hi Paige – sorry I wasn’t clear. I’m glad that not all of these embryos are going to go to waste; that people can be helped by them. Putting that kind of research potential into an incinerator is hard to imagine.

    I understand that, even so, many embryos will be destroyed – but at least the medical & scientific communities will now have a shot at funds for converting that potential into something that can help people.

  • P.S. – Yes, I see that it’s all the same to the embryo. I reserve the word for “perspective” for those critters with at least a minimum nervous and sensory systems in order to have an actual “perspective”. The important part is that the embryos will not be burned without the opportunity to first harvest their research potential.

  • [...] Smijer, a Chattanooga blogger, is equally baffled: [...]

  • I am friends with a couple who will soon be parents of their second and third children due to embryonic adoption.

  • Bill, that’s interesting. Have you discussed with them their reasoning for choosing this particular avenue to parenthood?

  • Basically, they did it after other, more common conception methods failed. They had one child the first time, and are now having twins.

    Haven’t really spent a lot of time talking to them about it. If I do, I will let you know.

  • That’s interesting. I wouldn’t dare criticize their choice, just interested to know how they made it. I can imagine myself going the in vitro route or going the live adoption route, but have a hard time imagining a situation where I would want to go the embryonic adoption route.

    And, of course, just because I don’t criticize their choice doesn’t mean I think it makes sense to promote embryonic adoption over live adoption as national policy.

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