You know... its interesting that you would post this, because just last night and this morning the thought had crossed my mind. It is a HUGE ethical debate among the American population on whether or not stem cell research is bad, and I would venture to guess, that the MAJORITY (not all) of people who are against this radical form of research are those without the disabilities which it could cure.
I have been a Type 1 Diabetic since the age of four, and I am now twenty five years old. I have researched this debate, and have found that the "benefits" of stem cell transplantation are so amazingly vast that its difficult to be charted, and often isnt charted simply because of the ethical dilemma. I will say for my part, as a woman, asw a Christian and as a juvenile diabetic, that I am absolutly for stem cell research. I think that it is a valuable method that could cure so many of our dibelitating diseases and disorders. I DO NOT think that it should be used on just anybody. I look in cases of type 1 diabetics with children/teenagers who would look at the stem cell research as being a "quick fix" or an "insta-cure" when they don't actually weigh or think about the pros and cons of this research, its just a simple "cure-all" and should not be used in these situations.
Anyone who will be eligible for transplantation should not only be completely aware of the disorder that they have, but should also have the responsibility as humans in order to take care of themselves. For example, say you have two boys with juvenile diabetes who are 18 years old. One of them monitors his bloodsugar, monitors his calories and carbs, exercises and understands about his diabetes and if he experiences a hypo or hyper-glycemic shock, he knows what those causes may have been. If the other boy does not monitor his bloodsugar, does not watch his diet, does not understand anything about why he is differenet or even care much that he is, which of those two do you think would be better suited for stem cell transplantation?
People have explained this scenario to me many times over the years, and I always give the same response, the first boy. When asked why, challenge yourself to think of why you made that choice.. I say that its because the first boy has a vested interest in his lifelong health, and will most likely take better care of himself over the years of his life than the second, who will return to doing the same activities most likely, or be relieved at the fact that he is no longer different, rather than look at what it took in order to make him that way.
Sorry about my ramblings, I just do not think that stem cell research should be just a cure all to anyone with any disability, although it should certainly be utilized for research and curing diseases such as juvenile diabetes.
Lol.. just realized how much I actually typed... oh well