To Fight For Freedom

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Science Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic
"To Fight for Freedom" is an enlightening look at the future of a world in which embryonic stem cell research and cloning of humans to harvest stem cells is allowed.It scratches the surface of the Stem Cell debate and gets people to consider the possibilities.

Submitted: April 19, 2007

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Submitted: April 19, 2007

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 To Fight for Freedom

“We can’t do this Sir”.

“We are doing this Lowing”.

“It’s not just a few here and there anymore Sir. You know it’s not like it started out to be. They aren’t being informed Sir, they don’t know what we’re doing: that we’re taking their children away. Why can’t we just use our cloned mothers to produce more?”

“You know that the clones can’t reproduce Lowing… just one of the side affects” General Linton commands. “Just keep running our branch like the dutiful little Lieutenant that you are. There’s nothing you can do about it and you know that if you are fired from this job the government won’t be able to get you another. The military can’t employ people who have doubts.” With that veiled threat he turned on his heal and walked briskly toward the exit.Lieutenant Hayden Lowing had plenty of time after he left to resume his own duties, and she began her next tour of the labs, to consider the problems that only a select few even knew existed. The Population Control Act was a good idea in Hayden’s mind although she knew that many chafed against the government restriction. Really though, with one central government over the whole world trying to balance things out it’s only rational that there would be more laws and different programs, and that some people wouldn’t like them. This stem cell program though… It was completely twisting the Population laws to advance research on human embryonic stem cells, and “twisting” was a definite understatement. Thanks to some fine print the military was allowed once the law passed to take a “quota” of the fertilized eggs that each family must give if they want to have children. Of course, since the general public doesn’t know that once they have the DNA they can simply continue to generate as many new embryos as necessary… The implications are obvious: a personal embryo farm for the military to use however they want. And unlimited guinea pig fertilized eggs to dissect and harvest parts from at liberty.

At first they were only stealing a few embryos, just so that research could be done on a small scale. She could understand that. After all, the potential good that stem cells could accomplish would be amazing. But to take an embryo, and allow it to develop until it’s three months old and then kill it just to harvest its stem cells… That may even be worse than only allowing the egg to form for three days to extract the stem cell mass.

Really, thought Hayden, it’s mass murder. Research has shown that even though the stem cells aren’t yet specialized, they do already contain the DNA for the person they will become. Or rather, she reminded herself, would become if we allowed the majority of them to leave our labs. The Population laws were a perfect cover for military cloning of embryos in the hopes of being able to one day mass produce perfect armies, and for science to destroy millions of embryos unnecessarily. Adult stem cells could be used instead of embryonic. It is of course slightly more difficult to harvest the adult stem cells, but surely not impossible and adult stem cells are actually better to use anyway she reminded herself. And, they didn’t allow much for the military or scientists going behind the public’s back or having free reign over an important area of science.As the light on her armband lit up, she realized it was time for her to have lunch. As she began walking back to the officer’s mess hall, still alternately glancing into the two-way mirrors checking that all of the scientists were heading to their own lunches, she heard a loud alarm go off, like a fire engine, piercing her ears and forcing her to cover them.She looked around quickly and seeing that no one else was around, Lt. Lowing calmly walked over to the nearest control panel on the wall and tapped in her access code to turn the alarm off. She smiled to herself and raced back to her office, the cell she had spent too many hours occupying for the past 8 years of her life. The Lieutenant ripped off her formal military jacket and replaced it with a pure white one. Not very practical of course, but it stood for everything she believed in. Freedom. Freedom of choice, freedom of will, freedom of life. Doing that, Lt. Lowing also picked up from the same hidden compartment in her office an ear phone. Taking her old one out with a triumphant smile she immediately began to receive a report on how the turn was going. As she jogged down the hallway to the stairwell she heard, “All branches secure. Branch 100- Training and arms. Branch 200- Research and Development. Branch 300-” …and she was on the main floor with nine soldiers pointing their philonic particle dissemblers straight at her. Her smile shocked them and delayed their reaction. Her white coat prompted the leader of the guard to ask, “Your name ma’am? Quickly please.”“Hayden Lowing, formerly of the Forth Reich. Currently serving under General Ross Carter, Army Beta, stationed at Sicily.” The captain listened for a moment to his ear phone then snapped to attention, giving her a salute which she returned before borrowing one of the guard’s communication arm bands and walking out the doors toward the main barracks where she had been informed that all complacent prisoners had been taken. She figured it would also be where General Carter would be, putting his brains and diplomatic negotiation skills to work with all of the military personnel, trying to make the change as smooth as possible for everyone.As she walked into the building, the hum of a recharging PPD was audible and a group of men and women captives were staring, mouths agape, at the place their companion had so recently “vacated”. She could see the utter fear in their eyes as they realized that the gun had, in a split second, completely obliterated –down to the last particle- their comrade. Wincing as she continued walking past the group, she reminded herself why such actions were necessary.Just a couple months ago Hayden had been touring the facility where approved mothers go to be impregnated. There was one woman she remembered seeing. She was so happy that she would finally be able to have the child she had wanted for so long, with tears in her eyes she watched as the technician slid the needle into her abdomen and left her embryo- her hope for the future. The poor woman didn’t even know what she’d been cheated out of. She truly would have been crying if she knew how many embryos of hers were duplicated and destroyed- how many clones of this child, that she would have in nine months, had been produced and had their lives ended prematurely for the sake of science. Lieutenant Hayden Lowing raised her head high, with the confidence and bearing of someone who knows why they’re involved, and with the pride of knowing that what she is doing will benefit people all over the globe. No one should be able to terminate a life, or a potential life in the name of science. Especially when there are alternatives, good alternatives like adult stem cells. Research will still go on, but it will be done ethically, with consideration for everyone, not just those who have a voice to speak for them. She strode forward, into the future, into freedom, into life. 


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