LifeNews.com is reporting that Fox told ABC's Diane Sawyer that there have been "problems along the way" to a promised breakthrough in the use of the cells to treat Parkinson's Disease, a disease with which he has suffered for years.
“Stem cells are an avenue of research that we’ve pursued and continue to pursue but it’s part of a broad portfolio of things that we look at. There have been some issues with stem cells, some problems along the way,” he said.
“It’s not so much that [stem cell research has] diminished in its prospects for breakthroughs as much as it’s the other avenues of research have grown and multiplied and become as much or more promising. So, an answer may come from stem cell research but it’s more than likely to come from another area,” he said.
Fox, who disclosed that he had Parkinson's disease in 2000, has been actively lobbying for the research for years. He vigorously opposed President George W. Bush's 2001 Executive Order that restricted stem cell research to existing lines and banned all federal funding for the research. President Barack Obama effectively reversed this order in 2009 with his own Executive Order that greatly expanded the scope of permissible research and opened the door to taxpayer funding.
However, as Fox noted, the research has yet to bring about a single cure while adult stem cell research has far out-paced it in the number of diseases and conditions it is now being used to treat.
Because embryonic stem cell research has been so closely tied to liberal politics in the past decade, many pro-life leaders see Fox's admission as evidence that because the issue is no longer winning votes, Fox and other Hollywood "victim stars" such as Christopher Reeve are no longer needed.
"In reality a greedy industry and immoral Left used Michael J. Fox and Christopher Reeve and other sick and injured people for their own agendas, the latter of which is to destroy Judeo-Christian ethics in the United States," says pro-life leader, Jill Stanek. "Sad to say, Fox was a tool."
Fox insists that he still strongly believes in embryonic stem cell research and government support of those studies, but has apparently decided to put his eggs in a few more baskets.
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