Wednesday, October 20, 2004

stems and more stems... cells, that is.


Friday I went with Bess McAneny on WHYY tv speaking against embryonic stem cell research, with Art Caplan as the nationally known expert speaking in favor of it and Mark Greene as another local expert like Bess and me. This came after we couldn't find any other local folks to do it - Mike DePietro was going to but got bronchitis. The WHYY producer got Bess to go on by telling her I was all signed up for it, then called me to tell me Bess was going to do it so how about I join her? It was a bust as these things go, but I think I will know a lot more about what to expect the next time. First, it wasn't too scary and I didn't say "shit" on live television like I was worried I'd do. Secondly, I realized once and for all (I hope) that it does no good to talk about the science -- people don't care that adult stem cell research is more promising and the truth is that embryonic stem cell research would be fine if it did not kill embryos. Mark Greene helped me realize that when he said that if he were on our side he wouldn't even both about the science, he'd talk ethics. The science can change, but the ethics will hold if they are solid to start with. Thirdly, the more of this kind of stuff I do, the more I'll get called on to do it assuming I don't completely screw up. I don't _want_ to be a spokeswoman against ESC research but right now it looks like in Delaware there's a short list of folks who will speak out publicly and I'm one of them. So I need to learn to get solid sound bites, shore up my knowledge, and above all don't get so antagonistic. I felt like biting Art Caplan's head off and I'm sure that showed.

Maybe I should join toastmaster's to get more experience with public speaking.

Tomorrow Alfonso Gomez-Lobo comes for the first debate - Inquiry for Truth dialogue on therapeutic cloning. Will Metzger is sponsoring this one. Saturday will be the panel discussion at the conference. I hope Mike Castle does not back out, and I hope (pray) he is open to hearing a different POV.Oremus.

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