There is an example in the Telegraph that demonstrates yet again that we are all prisoners to the meta-context (frames of reference) within which we understand things and explain ourselves to others.
Bush turns back on science to veto stem cell Bill
… is the title of a piece by Francis Harris, reporting from Washington. And what is he writing about? Bush has vetoed a bill increasing government-funded research using human embryo cells. So Bush is not turning his back on ‘science’ at all, but rather is turning his back on providing tax money for activities that some taxpayers regard as murder. Personally I am all for stem-cell research and I do not any moral problems with the use of human embryos for research, but I fail to see why people who take a very different view should be forced to fund something they regard as child-killing… but then I would rather see no scientific research whatsoever funded with taxpayer’s money.
But within the meta-context that constrains Francis Harris’ views, to oppose tax-funding for certain types of research on moral grounds is to turn your back on ‘science’ rather than turning your back on what you may regard as ‘murder’. Just as a thought experiment, ponder this: if Bush managed to get a law enacted that allowed for the testing of dangerous experimental drugs on the inmates in Guantanamo Bay, would the title of Francis Harris’ article be “Bush backs laws supporting the advancement of science”?
Somehow I do not think so, yet logically it should be.