There has been a lot of talk during the past few weeks concerning the European Union forcing its member states to fund embryonic stem cell research. Remember, that this research destroys embryos and has proven useless (source).
Well, Monday, July 24, 2006, the European Union made a compromise that the Catholic Church is upset about still. Now, "The Monday vote would make sure that the EU does not directly pay for embryonic stem cell research but member nations would be free to use EU science funds they receive to pay for it in their own countries" (1).
In its Wednesday issue, the L'Osservatore Romano condemned the effort to find a compromise between funding the research, which involves the destruction of days-old unborn children, and pro-life concerns about taking human life. The paper said the EU is condoning "a macabre illicit trade." Expanding on the Vatican's response to the vote, Bishop Elio Sgreccia, head of the Pontifical Academy for Life, told Vatican Radio that the vote violated a "primordial right" to life and authorized "the use of a human being on the basis of 'I kill you in order to gain benefits for others.'" "To not be opposed to research that is destructive and inherently violent" is "an act of serious inconsistency," he said.
Concerning the Compromise:
The compromise means that some money from the EU's $65 billion science budget will fund some embryonic stem cell research over the 2007-2013 period that it covers. But it also includes consessions to nations oppose to embryonic stem cell research that the funding would not go to pay for destroying human embryos but rather for research on existing embryonic stem cells or on research conducted after the destruction of human life has taken place. A coalition of nations, led by Germany, had been working to block any funding for embryonic stem cell research and appeared to be on the verge of winning the debate. However, Finland, which holds the EU presidency this year, proposed the compromise and Slovenia, one of the members of the coalition, reversed its position and supported it.