Wednesday, November 7, 2007

HB 76: When does a cloning ban have something to do with abortion?

You'd be amazed what can be hidden deep in the bowels of proposed legislation.

Cloning prohibitions are trendy in state legislatures these days, much like anti-porn internet laws were several years ago.

There are two problems with this, only one of which is the rampant scientific illiteracy throughout our nation (including many of our legislators).

The biggest concern is the definitions.

Consider HB 76, which includes the following:

(g) An ‘organism’ is a living whole being, an individual, even if that organism is compromised of just one cell.

(h) A ‘human being’ is a living whole human organism, a human individual, from the beginning of the single-cell stage onward, produced by any means.

Notice what this language does: by law it defines human life as beginning at conception, which lays some important groundwork for later placing restrictions on abortion.

Please understand that I am not taking a position for or against abortion here; the issue is intellectual honesty.

Do you seriously believe that the bill's three sponsors and eighteen co-sponsors all missed this?

If not, you'll be interested in the complete list:

Rep. Joseph Miro (R-22nd)

Additional Sponsors:
Sen. David McBride (D-13th)
Sen. Charles Copeland (D-4th)

Rep. Terry Spence (R-18th)
Rep. "Biff" Lee (R-40th)
Rep. Don Blakey (R-34th)
Rep. Joseph Booth (R-37th)
Rep. George Carey (R-36)
Rep. Benjamin Ewing (R-35th)
Rep. Gerald Hocker (R-38th)
Rep. Gregory Lavelle (R-11th)
Rep. Vincent Lofink (R-27th)
Rep. William Outten (R-30)
Rep. Daniel Short (R-39th)
Rep. Pamela Thornburg (R-29th)
Rep. Gerald Brady (D-4th)
Sen. George Bunting (D-20)
Sen. Colin Bonini (R-16th)
Sen. Catherine Cloutier (R-15th)
Sen. Gary Simpson (R-18th)
Sen. John Still (R-17th)

If there is anyone on this list known to favor legal abortion, you may want to send them this post.

As for those legislators who are opposed to legal abortion, that's also their right, but you might want to ask them if they intentionally signed on to support this "Trojan Horse" language.


Anonymous said...

My representative (Daniel Short) is a co-sponsor, and my email has been sent. Nothing forceful, just an FYI, with my concerns.

Steven H. Newton said...

Thanks, and you're right about the approach. I'd be really interested to know about his reply.

a most peculiar nature said...

I find this very disturbing. I was aware of the legislation, but never read the details.

Cathering Cloutier, one of the co-sponsors, is my Senator. I will be letting her know my concerns.

Anonymous said...

He said that the concerns would most likely be debated on the floor when and if it finally gets there. Since he's pro-life, I doubt he will raise them himself.

Ryan S. said...

I was at the hearing when this was in committee, and there was talk of amending it so this definition only applies to issues of cloning and nothing else to appease those concerns.

Steven H. Newton said...

So far, following the commitee process and talking to at least two or three representatives, nobody is currently doing anything to change this wording.