Stephen Napier On Stem Cell Research

999 words - 4 pages

The dispute which is being analyzed in this paper is one of mass debate today. The argument is on whether or not embryonic stem cells should be used to come up with forms of treatment for degenerative diseases such as: Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s and Diabetes. The author of this paper is Stephen Napier he is in association with the Bioethics center in Philadelphia, PA. The article was published in the Journal of Medicine and Philosophy in 2009.
In this article Mr. Napier reviews past arguments on the current debate and provides the reader with his stance against the use of Stem cells as a form of research and furthermore he argues the stance on vulnerability of a fetus and if it has moral ...view middle of the document...

He then goes onto to say what the protections to the vulnerable could be. In the following section he begins to place his argument into an outline.
After laying out his structured argument he takes a broader look at the opposition and what they might say about his view on the subject matter. The critics would say that the human embryo does not count as a human subject or that she does not count as a vulnerable human subject (Napier, 502). After explaining the opposition he then looks at the moral worth of the embryo and gives several situations in which there is possibilities of the embryo having moral values even before birth. He gives an example that an adult is comatose and needs stem cell implants to be able to function again. The adult who needs regenerative therapy and the embryo are in the same position in relation to possessing personhood capacities. Both lack these capacities in morally similar ways. Therefore, if we say the adult has moral status, then so does the embryo (Napier, 505). Another case he illustrates to prove his point is that of women smoking and having miscarriages. Most women when they find out they have had a miscarriage mourn the loss of their baby. Most people would say that women should stop smoking if they become pregnant; not doing so is morally irresponsible (Napier, 505). According to Napier, if the women have to stop smoking because it’s immoral then the embryo is a living being.
In his conclusion he summarizes up his previous accounts and pushes his side of the argument once again. We have a strong intuition that an infant is more vulnerable than an eight-year-old since the latter can at least give assent, whereas the former cannot even do that. Common sense intuition affords infants greater vulnerability than eight-year-olds, and there is no natural stopping point as we travel back in the developmental course of the human being (Napier,...

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