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Letters: When an embryo becomes a person

October 20, 2012

Re "Red, blue and faithful," Opinion, Oct. 16

Jonah Goldberg's partisanship shows through in his criticism of Vice President Joe Biden's heartfelt statement of his Roman Catholic faith in his opposition to abortion and in the separation of church and state, which precludes imposing that religious belief on all Americans.

Goldberg claims Republican challenger Paul Ryan's professed belief that human life begins at conception (and thus abortion should be a crime at any stage) "isn't in fact theological dogma but a scientific and moral conclusion." After conception, a woman is not even pregnant until the fertilized egg migrates to the uterus and implants in the lining, a process that usually takes nine days. This early-stage embryo has the DNA of a unique individual but otherwise is just a microscopic seed lacking all other human characteristics, including a brain that gives rise to self-awareness.

Sorry, but if an embryo is a person, then an acorn is an oak tree.

Joel Davis

Los Angeles

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