[Re: "Stem cell research needed, Andrew Sedor, Nov. 16, 2006."]
Your article regarding stem cell research included the quote "it's the the age-old story of the fanatical religious right opposing scence..."
Since the "fanatical religous right" was not named, presumably it is anyone who disagrees with embryonic stem cell research from a religious point of view. A broad brush with which to paint, but it saves the trouble of looking at the actual points of the argument. In other words, it is an ad hominem attack, not a discussion of the real issues.
The Roman Catholic Church is often accused of being part of the religious right for their understanding of the dignity of human nature, which prohibits embryonic stem cell research (along with abortion, euthanasia, torture and pornography). Thus, they are "anti-science fanatics" to those who wish to promote ESC research, a convenient boogeyman.
This, of course, denies historical reality, which is that the groundwork for Western scientific thought was laid by the Church in the middle ages, in no small part by their institution of the university (Paris and Bologna). While this flies in the face of accepted wisdom, it is well documented by contemporary historians.
To oppose a scientific investigation on the grounds of human dignity is not anti-science, as those who have read the transcripts of the Nuremburg files on human experimentation will testify. The issue is not science vs. anti-science, but, 'Where do we draw the line?' Ad hominem attacks, such as Rabbi Voss-Altman's, do not further the debate in a rational manner.