Stem cell research has been at the center of one of the hottest debates in the 21st century where science and ethics have clashed. Additionally, many lab procedures flirt with the bounds of ethics and morality — cloning, genetic engineering, in vitro fertilization, and preimplantation genetic diagnosis to name just a few. Some scientists see new lab procedures as holding the answer to many of medicine's most difficult challenges. They see a future with the ability to clone, cure the most noxious of diseases — perhaps, even, the ability to achieve genetic perfection. But such a utopian vision dismisses the spiritual side of the equation, overriding it with the "absolutes" of science. This vision ignores the moral and ethical questions surrounding medical research:

What are the potential human costs of these so-called "advances in medicine and technology?"

Are some humans "disposable" if their destruction leads to medical advances?

As science moves into uncharted territory, Americans are caught between the hope it provides and the quickly fading morals that guard against sacrificing human life. Responding to these challenges, The Family Foundation has produced, Do No Harm: Ethics in the Laboratory, a new policy paper. In this paper, we address the oft-asked questions of

When does life begin?

Is embryonic stem cell research ethical?

Is in vitro fertilization a choice that respects life?

I encourage you to read Do No Harm as I believe you will find it instructive and enlightening. Click here to read the report in its entirety.

The Family Foundation has worked with pro-life allies for several years to educate the public and legislators on this important topic. We have successfully amended legislation that attempted to funnel your tax dollars into unethical research to ensure that Virginians are not forced to subsidize these questionable programs. There is still work to be done and too many politicians in Richmond are willing to waste our money on unethical and unproductive research. Our hope is that this paper will provide information to citizens, the media and elected officials they may not otherwise know.

To help us continue to produce research that produces policy papers such as Do No Harm and our previous papers, and to help us disseminate it to legislators, policy makers and the media, click here.