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About The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current | View Entire Issue (Dec. 7, 1999)
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Research should go on
Last week the University of Nebraska
was exposed for doing something perfectly
legal, and the state is in an uproar.
The discovery that NU Medical Center
doctors are doing research using fetal tissue
from abortions stirred up a hornet’s nest of
contempt among anti-abortion rights
The idea that this research somehow pro
The University of
Nebraska is a
In 1993, the
to the 1930s,
Women will continue to choose abortion
'regardless of what happens to their fetuses
afterward. Scientists take care to make sure
the decision to use fetal tissue for research is
separate from the woman’s decision to have
What concerns us is the possibility that
administrators hid the practice, hoping no
one would find out.
It should not take an in-depth investiga
tion by the state’s largest newspaper to find
out what our university is researching.
Even after the disclosure that fetal
research is ongoing, it has remained difficult
to get information about the study or even
which grant is paying for it.
Certainly this is beneficial research, but
we should be able to find out more about it
The university should be open about
what it is researching and supply details on
request. It is important for the public to be
able to know what its state university is
- The academic community balked at the
criticism of this research calling it an affront
to academic freedom, and we agree that it is.
But the university has committed an
affront against the public’s right to know.
The University of Nebraska is a public uni
versity, and information about its activities
should be public.
In the case of the university’s fetal tissue
research, critics must realize that this is not
an abortion issue, nor does it encourage
Research using fetal tissue is important
to the development of vaccines and cures,
and it provides important clues to neurolog
Research should continue, and the
details of its funding and other sources
should be forthcoming.
Unsigned editoriaJsjre the opinions of
the Fall 1999 Daily Nebraskan. They do
not necessarily reflect the views of the
University of Nebraska-Uncoin, its
employees, its student body or the
University of Nebraska Board of Regents.
A column is solely the opinion of its author.
The Board of Regents serves as pubisher
of the Daily Nebraskan; policy is set by
the Daily Nebraskan Bdtotitf Board. The
UNL Publications Board, established by
the hands of tesk^S^mployees.
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The Daily Nebraskan retains the right to
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Too often NU student groups,
particularly ASUN, are criticized for
their lack of significant influence
and/or progress. -
But I am a big believer in the stu
dent experience. The University of
Nebraska offers too many programs
and organizations for us to leave here
as simply lecture-listeners and note
Although the things many groups
accomplish are quite respectable, I
feel it is the experience of “doing”
that is most important.
If future ASUN candidates
choose adding fish to the fountain as
a foundation of their platform they
will, undoubtedly, benefit more from
the gathering of die fish than from
their ultimate presence in the pond.
Robert N. Joseph
Fatal Flaw in Fetal
The debate over the ethics of
using aborted fetal tissue for research
- brings to mind an earlier University
of Nebraska controversy where the
interests of research had to bow to
questions of ethics and morality.
In the earlier instance, the purely
religious convictions of a very tiny
population were sufficient to per
suade federal lawmakers to mandate
that ancient, long-dead human
remains and artifacts be removed for
ever from the reach of legitimate sci
While I respect the beliefs of the
American Indians who have shared
my home and my life, I am convinced
that the moral and spiritual claims of
developing human organisms on the
verge of being born are infinitely
greater than the claim that respect
must be paid, regardless of the cost to
society, to our dusty, decaying bones.
It might be aigued that the good to
be obtained by advancing treatment
of neurological diseases like
Alzheimer’s disease justifies the
Even with so noble an end in
view, I judge that the cost is still too
great to pay. It is not a theoretical
issue to me:
I write this as I am filling out a
leave form that will allow me to
spend time supervising my father
with Alzheimer's disease while my
mother deals with a family emer
gency in California.
The losses and suffering of my
family from this disease should not
be used to argue for a naive code of
ethics that always justifies the means
by the ends.
electronics technician III
College of Engineering and
Stand and Cheer!
I read in the Daily Nebraskan that
the university wanted increased stu
dent support at basketball games this
year and even cut season ticket prices
That was good - many more tick
ets were sold this year. But where are
students going to be put if our seating
is taken away? The D section?
I attended the Eastern Illinois
game with a group of friends and
found just a few single seats open in
the middle of a crowd. Some of us
were lucky enough to find seats in the
student section. The rest of our
group was escorted up to
the D section.
If this was the
case for a
n o n -
will it be
like when Big
12 teams come
The students are the people who
provide the majority of the enthusi
asm at Nebraska men’s basketball
games. We are the ones who stand
and make some noise when the team
needs to get fired up or when the
game is on the line.
For example, during the last game
against Western Carolina, the
Huskers’ Kimani Ffriend beckoned
the crowd to stand up and make some
noise late in the game.
The students in the student sec
tion of the floor seats were on their
feet, while their counterparts across
the way remained seated and relative
ly quiet. Half the noise, half the
enthusiasm, half the support for the
I have to point out other universi
ties with premier athletic programs
around the nation, where students are
an integral part of a home-court
advantage, and are treated as such.
I wish that UNL students would
be treated the same.
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