Cloning Right Or Wrong Essay, Research Paper
Cloning of Humans Right or Wrong
Is cloning humans morally and ethically wrong? Are researchers taking many unnecessary risks with all the unknown affects it could bring to the human clone and the ethics of our society today?
The term clone refers to a group of organisms that are genetically identical. Most such clones result from asexual reproduction, a process in which a new organism develops from only one parent (World Book Encyclopedia).
To give you a little history of cloning, it began a long time ago the first actual living thing that was cloned was the tadpole in 1952.
The next living thing to be cloned was a mouse in 1976. They were injected with human DNA so they could study diseases and cures for them.
The first mammal, sheep and cows are cloned from embryonic cells. They contain genetic materials from both parents because the embryos are sexually fertilized.
An experimental technique has been developed for cloning certain higher animals. This process involves destroying the nucleus of an egg cell of the species to be cloned. The nucleus is than removed from a body cell of an animal of the same species. This donor nucleus is injected into the egg cell. The egg, with its new nucleus, develops into an animal that has the same genetic makeup as the donor (Andrews 33-34). If a number of eggs receive transplants from the same donor, the resulting offspring form a clone. This was the method used in the procedure to clone a sheep (Andrews 22-23).
All of these methods were to help the human race. If they would clone human organs, that would be expectable because they are helping the human race have a better and longer life (Science Vogel).
The process of cloning mammals will have many different out comes. For instance it took scientists who created Dolly (lamb) 277 tries, nineteen of those 277 were deemed healthy while the others were discarded. Five of those nineteen survived, but four of them died within ten days of birth of sever abnormalities. Dolly was the only one to survive (Fact: Adler 1996).
If those nuclei were human, “the cellular body count would look like sheer carnage” (Logic: Kluger 1997). Even Ian Wilmut, one of the scientists accredited with the cloning phenomenon at the Roslin Institute agrees, “the more you interfere with reproduction, the more danger there is of things going wrong” (Expert Opinion).
Cloning humans is more complicated, even more deaths and lethal birth defects can be expected during experimentation process. If these clones have any of the feelings that real human beings have just think of what they would be putting the clones through, it could be severely harmful to them emotionally and physically. Cloning could result in the introduction of additional defects in the human gene pool. There are also to many unknown factors that could adversely affect the offspring (McGee 5).
If cloning of humans is granted, it may diminish the sense of individuality (The Advertiser). If it did become perfected individuality would be lost because everyone would be so similar. The special differences in everyone that make up society today would be lost; cloning could change the whole future. The psychological harm to the children, they may suffer a diminished sense of individuality and personal autonomy. A cloned child may feel that their future is constrained by the life path of their gene donor. Their life would seem to be predestined for them (Kass 34-35).
There are so many unknown factors of cloning humans we would really not know the complete out come unless they extend their research through the whole process of life until the death of the human clone. This way researchers can make sure the clone will advance as real humans do, with the brain processing the information correctly and the organs aging and working as they should. Even if the clone may appear normal it might have inherited genetic damage that would eventually show up as premature aging or some other disorder.
Leading to the perfection in cloning humans the possibility of physical harm to the embryo and newborns is one of the main factors. Many will result in death. Even if the infant clone survived, there was no guarantee that it would develop normally. There is a fear that clones will have accelerated aging process since the cell used in the cloning procedure will have been exposed to a lifetime already (Andrews 33).
Cloning might lead to the creation of genetically engineered groups of people for specific purposes, such as warfare or slavery. They may also attempt to improve the human race according to an arbitrary standard. Ethicists have voiced concerns that cloning, combined with various techniques of genetic engineering, could lead to efforts to selectively breeding children who are healthier and even more intelligent. (Time Magazine)
Ethical questions have also been raised about cloning s effects on parenting and family life. Parents of clones might value their children according to how closely they met some overly detailed, preordained specifications. Cloning, therefore, could undermine basic elements of a loving, nurturing family, such as the acceptance of each child as a unique individual.
Some ethicists voice fears that human clones might be considered less than human. A clone might have fewer rights than other people may have. Doctors might use clones as sources of organs for organ transplants. Clones will be at odds with the traditional concept of family. They may not be accepted into religious organizations because almost all the followers of God will say it s against God s will. (Kass 51)
There are so many unknown factors of cloning humans we would really not know the complete out come unless they extend their research through the whole process of life until the death of the human clone or the offspring of a clone. Which leads to the other side of this heated topic, how will we know what is possible until we try. Should the government have the say in what research is done because they feel that it s wrong? Some of the most powerful people in the world have felt compelled to act against this threat. Former President Clinton swiftly imposed a ban on federal funding for human-cloning research. Bills are in the works in both houses of Congress to outlaw human cloning (CBS Evening News). Cloning has been taken to be a fundamentally evil thing that must be stopped. But what is exactly bad about it? From an ethical point of view, it is difficult to see exactly what is wrong with cloning human beings.
The people who are afraid of cloning tend to think that someone will break into Napoleon’s Tomb, steal some DNA and make 2000 emperors. In reality, infertile people who now use donated sperm, eggs, or embryos would probably use cloning. Do the potential harms outweigh the potential benefits of cloning? From what we know now, they don’t. Therefore, we should not rush to ban a potentially useful method of helping infertile, genetically at-risk, or single people to become parents.
We can start by asking whether human beings have a right to reproduce. I say, ” Yes”. I have no moral right to tell other people they shouldn’t be able to have children, and I don’t see that the president has that right either. If humans have a right to reproduce, what right does society have to limit the means? Essentially all reproduction is done these days with medical help at delivery, and even before. Truly natural human reproduction would make pregnancy-related death the number.1 killer of adult women.
Of course, some forms of medical help are more invasive than others. With in vitro fertilization, the sperm and egg are combined in the lab and surgically implanted in the womb. Less than two decades ago, a similar concern was raised over the ethical issues involved in ” test-tube babies”. Today, nearly 30,000 such babies have been born in the United States alone (Science Vogel).
This has made many parents very happy. So what law or principle says that one combination of genetic material in a flask is Ok, but another is not?
Nature clones people all the time, and rather frequently. Approximately 1 in 1000 births is of identical twins. However, despite how many or how few individual characteristics twins have in common, they are different people. They have their own identities, their own thoughts, and their own rights. They enter different occupations, get different diseases, have different experiences with marriage, alcohol, community leadership, and etc. They have different souls, as would cloned individuals. Even if somebody did clone 2,000 Napoleons, they would be even more different from their parents than twins are from each other because the cloned child would be raised in a different historical period. The argument that cloning robs individuals of their individuality therefore doesn’t hold.
Perhaps the strongest ethical argument against cloning is that it could lead to a new, unfamiliar type of family relationship (Talk of the Nation).
We have no idea what it would be like to grow up as the child of a parent who seems to know you from the inside. Some psychological characteristics may be biologically based and the parent will know in advance what crises a cloned teenager will go through and how he or she will respond. It may produce a good and loving relationship, because the parent may understand, to greater degree than most parents, what the child is going through. On the other hand, most children want to have their own space. Still, just because a family relationship is new and untried, is not a reason to condemn it automatically. In the past, many types of family relationships were considered harmful but later showed to cause no harm to the children.
Among these is joint custody after divorce, gay and lesbian parenting, and interracial adoption. As with adoption, in-vitro fertilization, and use of donor sperm, how the child will react to the news about his /her arrival in the world will depend to a large extent on how the parents themselves feel about this mode of reproduction (Medical Post). Parents and children may adjust to cloning far more easily than we might think, just as it happened with in-vitro fertilization.
One recurring image in anti-cloning propaganda is of some evil dictator raising an army of cloned warriors. But who is going to raise such an army. Clones start out life as babies. It is much easier to recruit young adults than to take care of babies for 20 years. Remember that cloning isn’t the same as genetic engineering. We can’t make supermen-we have to find him first and his bravery might or might not be genetically determined.
Some of you might think that cloning is playing God. However, can you really say that you know God’s intentions? There is substantial disagreement as to what is God’ s will. But what I find interesting in this argument is something I read in a article “Cloning: Will They Soon Clone Human Beings?” by Garner Ted Armstrong who wrote: ” Anyone who has truly proved God exists; that God isn’t only Creator, but Life giver, Designer, Sustainer, and Ruler over all his creation, knows that the human family began with one man, and that a wife, miraculously created from his own body and as unique and original a creation as Adam himself, formed the first family. Though God’s miraculous creation of Eve was far from cloning, it is interesting to note in passing that God’s own Word says He used Adam’s rib, physical bone and tissue, to create Eve.”
Another argument against cloning is that it would be available only to the wealthy and therefore would increase social inequality. What else is new? This is the story of American health care. We need a better health care system, not a ban on new technologies.
To summarize, human cloning and cloning research shouldn’t be made illegal by the U.S. Federal Government because it may provide a way for completely sterile individuals to reproduce, it may provide a way for homosexual couples to reproduce themselves, it probably will provide a valuable basic research and possible spin off technologies related to reproduction and development, our society has respected general right to control ones body in regard to reproduction, and finally prohibiting it would violate the fundamental freedom of scientific inquiring.
Will human cloning be done? Undoubtedly. The technique used in sheep cloning does not require a highly sophisticated laboratory. Since the United States government doesn’t support research on the human cloning, and the United Kingdom, France, and Germany have banned cloning, the research making cloning possible may take place in Asia, Eastern Europe, or the Near East. Much of it may take place in secret, and it will occur regardless of any United States policy.
According a recent study, approximately 80 % of Americans feel that cloning is wrong. However, the vast majority of people, including those who rail against cloning research, owe their very lives to previous medical discoveries. Don’t let the forces of ignorance and fear turn us back from the research, and at this point, do not worry about Napoleon s Tomb. Only living cells can be cloned.
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