Wednesday, December 07, 2005

You never know what you'll find once you start digging...

In the course of researching what was going to be today’s entry, I came across a very interesting tidbit on a section of the CBC website devoted to a comparison of issues between the parties contesting the Canadian election:

Specifically, the paragraph outlining the Conservatives’ platform of health reforms:



Prevent the drift toward two-tier health care. Establish maximum acceptable wait times for essential medical services. Press for faster processing of drug approvals. Support health research and innovation. Ban embryonic research for at least three years and encourage granting agencies to focus on more promising adult (post-natal) stem cell research.

Say what?

Ban embryonic research for at least three years????????

This is a complicated subject, as “embryonic research” can mean several different things, some more ethically acceptable than others. The Canadian government passed a bill in March, 2004, prohibiting activities such as creating a human clone and regulating others such as using excess embryos already created for reproductive purposes.

But a total ban on stem cell research using embryos (as opposed to adult cells which show some promise but, as yet, not nearly as much) is a more conservative position than even the United States has taken!

Not wanting to take the CBC’s word for this, I checked with CTV, and they also have this item listed on their “issues” page.

Okay, now I want to see it from the source. With details.

I can’t find it anywhere on the Conservative Party of Canada website.

I can send an e-card, buy a golf umbrella or request a lawn sign but
I CANNOT VERIFY THE PARTY’S POSITION ON STEM CELL RESEARCH.

To be fair (if I must) I couldn’t find a mention of this on any other party websites either.

Is it a big deal? I won’t know until I have more information, and right now the only way for me to get that will be to actively request it.
Perhaps the information on the CBC and CTV sites is out of date; but if so, the CPC should have caught it before some lowly blogger.

If it is for real, it's important, both to those who agree with the stance and those who would oppose it.