THE POLITICS OF NATURE

Catalyst October Issue 2006

Nature, a highly respected scientific journal, created quite a stir recently when it issued a press release about an article in its publication that claims to have found a way to generate human embryonic stem cells without destroying the embryo. The only problem with the news release was that it was false.

The author of the article, Dr. Robert Lanza, did not make such an extravagant claim; the problem lay with those who sought to hype the research. Indeed, Dr. Lanza was never shown the news release about his research.

The major media, of course, didn’t bother to fact check the claims made in the news release. Thus did they disseminate false reports. Richard Doerflinger, a senior staff member of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), accurately branded the story a “sham.”

Kudos to the USCCB for jumping on this from the get-go. They smelled a rat right away and said so. Too bad the mainstream media doesn’t approach science the way Catholic officials do.


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Written by Bill