To the editor:
I must respond to Will Richardson's recent letter. He refers to "falsehoods and scare tactics being the weapons of choice for the misguided opponents" to the Missouri Stem Cell Initiative. He states that the initiative is about "preserving the lives of thousands of sick or disabled Missourians." Here are some facts he chooses to ignore.
The Missouri Stem Cell Initiative has chosen to redefine cloning, and in doing so misrepresents itself as an anti-cloning measure. But the scientific method -- called somatic cell nuclear transfer -- being supported by this initiative is the same method used in the cloning of Dolly the sheep in 1996. Nine years ago, the headlines and stories about this event boasted that Dolly was a clone.
The only successful advances in stem-cell research have come from adult or umbilical cord stem-cell research, so your title to Mr. Richardson's letter ("Initiative will preserve lives") is a falsehood. To date there is not one medical breakthrough that has resulted from embryonic stem-cell research. The opponents to this initiative are not against adult or umbilical stem cell research. We are against cloning.
I find it very interesting that Mr. Richardson would quote the notorious Nazi propaganda Joseph Goebbels. You see, there are currently 27 countries that ban human cloning. Germany is one of them. Missourians shouldn't repeat the lessons that Germany learned from mad scientists run amok. We're certainly smarter than that.
MARY WULFERS, Cape Girardeau