Supreme Court Allows Continued Destruction of Human Embryos

Human Embryo - Approximately 8 weeks estimated gestational age lunar caustic / Foter / CC BY

This week the Supreme Court declined to hear a case about the Obama administration’s funding of embryonic stem cell research, thereby allowing the continued use of taxpayer dollars for studies that require the destruction of human embryos. The high court refused to hear an appeal from two scientists who have been challenging the funding.

At issue is whether the Obama administration’s policy violates the 1996 Dickey-Wicker Amendment, an annual spending bill rider that bars federal funds for “research in which a human embryo or embryos are destroyed, discarded, or knowingly subjected to risk of injury or death.”

Many scientists and biotech firms have promoted embryonic stem cell research even though the extraction of such cells from an embryo results in the destruction of the days-old human being.