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December 15, 2007
  

THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS A "FERTILIZED EGG" 
It's a matter of basic Biology — the introduction to the study of human reproduction. Everyone should have learned it at least prior to the third year of high school. Astonishingly, many, if not most, Americans don't understand it at all. So, in covering events related in particular to the use of human embryos for stem cell research, terms like "fertilized egg," or "pre-embryo" are bandied about by the media as if human beings were not involved in the discussion.

The facts are these: Human beings, you and I, have 46 chromosomes in every cell in our bodies, except for the cells capable of generating another human life — the male sperm and female ovum, each having 23 chromosomes.

When a 23 chromosome sperm penetrates a 23 chromosome ovum, a new, individual 46 chromosome single-cell human being comes into existence. No more egg. No more sperm.

That's it. Simple, isn't it? Simple but miraculously complex as the little boy or girl, with a DNA structure different and independent from the father or mother, develops through several stages from embryo to birth. Anyone who has given even cursory study to the intricate workings of the human body (consider the structure of the human eye alone) has a hard time denying the hand of a Higher Power in the creation of a human life.

Currently, efforts are under way in Colorado, Michigan, Mississippi, Montana and Georgia to bring ballot initiatives before the voters that would recognize the existence of a human person from the moment of conception. In a column for LifeSiteNews.com (11/27/07), Hilary White pointed out that the facts about when a human being comes into existence have been known for more than one hundred and thirty years. In 1875, the German zoologist Oskar Hertwig showed definitively that penetration of a spermatozoon into an ovum was the beginning of independent life and that the terms "conception" and "fertilization" are therefore interchangeable terms. Human embryologists have shown that once fertilization has taken place, neither the male nor female sex cells (often misnamed "eggs"), continue to exist.

The abortion lobby is keenly aware that the establishment of the personhood of the unborn child would signal the end to legal abortion in this country. Ballot initiatives like those currently being proposed draw intense and well-funded opposition from the abortion industry and the wealthy individuals and foundations that support it. It's always a David vs. Goliath struggle, and oftentimes, the pro-life side does not succeed. But that doesn't mean we shouldn't try to give the voters a chance to hear the arguments—sometimes you have to lose a few battles before you win the war.

After all, little boys and girls are at stake because there is no such thing as a "fertilized egg."

Never forget that YOU were once an embryo.



Republican National
Coalition for Life


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