Sunday, 23 March 2008

Control & Conscience

Devil's Kitchen sums up my feelings on the hybrid embryos controversy. It's a classic case of an irresistible force -Gordon Brown's control freakery - meeting an immovable object; possibly 12 of them if this Scotsman report is correct.

I broadly support the proposed changes to the law contained within the Bill, but being as I am pro-choice, an atheist, and work in scientific research (although not in a field that is affected by the passage or not of this Bill) that is probably not surprising. I object to decisions on such matters effectively being made on faith grounds rather than scientific ones.

However, the wider issue of concern that has been exposed by the latest to-do is political, not religious. The associated Scotsman editorial describes Cardinal O'Brien (who called on Catholics to oppose the Bill on moral grounds) as "politically right but morally wrong".

The Labour leadership's decision to impose a whip is backfiring, and not before time. The party whip system is singularly anti-democratic - preventing MPs from actually representing their constituents' views with regard to the passage of Bills. It's time it was abolished. Perhaps if nothing else this will provide impetus for a review at the very least.

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