GRG Editorial (Cont'd.)

This so-called definition of the "beginning of personhood" is the equivalent of saying "2 plus 2 equals 5!" It is incomprehensible, like from outer space, from another planet. Here is a person who appears to speak the English language. She seems to understand the punctuation, spelling, grammar, and syntax of the English language, but somehow she lost the semantics. She doesn't seem to know how to look up one of the most fundamental words in the English dictionary "person" -- and know what it means (denotation is the correspondence between a word and the thing in the real world). I cannot imagine where she might have lost out in the educational process. It certainly wasn't in "Biology 101." It had to be much before. Maybe it was in the 6th grade, or the 5th, or maybe in Kindergarten. And she presumably holds a Ph.D. from an institution of higher education. How could it be that someone with a Ph.D. in biology could be so linguistically challenged about the meaning of a simple English word in the dictionary, the meaning of which even a typical three-year-old native English-speaking child grasps intuitively? It makes it virtually impossible to communicate when you don't even know what a person is! Hello! Person. P-E-R-S-O-N. A clump of cells is not a person. That's why we have words in the English language, don't we? To help us communicate. Remember that Dr. Irving didn't say that an embryo was a potential person; she said that it was a person. This is not a joke. This is not something written for the purpose of humor or satire. This is a serious example of rhetoric (sophistry) intended not just to state a falsehood for the sake of argument (like what are the implications of assuming 2 + 2 = 5), it intends to teach a falsehood as a truth. It could be possible to ignore this diatribe, given that it was the pathological ramblings of a single deranged person, but this point-of-view is coming to have its own constituency that actually lobbies for legislation, laws that will control and govern us all. Therefore, we see that this obliteration of the word "person" in our language has implications. It is not due to mere incompetence but to an insidious hidden agenda to inflict someone's distortions on all of us. Our agenda is diametrically opposed to Dr. Irving. We wish to cure all age-related diseases by any ethical means possible. These means, if we are not overtaken by other scientific/medical events beforehand, include the ethical use of embryonic stem cells to allow Christopher Reeve to walk again in the next five years. If we allow some self-appointed philosopher with an advanced degree in biology to come along and capriciously hijack English words for their own political agenda, it could muddy the waters in Congress, and such agendas need to be exposed for what they are.