Engl 1113 NOON T/R
May 3, 2001 ROUGH DRAFT
An Opinion on Cloning
Through all the negative and positive possibilities of cloning, the bottom line
is that it should be advanced and studied to see what it can really offer us.
Cloning is an ethical advance in technology. The truth is that cloning has some
very frightening cons to it, and many negative opinions of the science are apparent.
"If a population of organisms has the same genetic information, then the
disease would wipe out the entire population"(Connoly). "It seems like
playing God, and interfering with the natural process"(Schneider). Read any
article over cloning and a person will see the list of negative opinions goes
on and on. One will also notice that most of the groups condemning cloning have
absolutely no involvement with biology or science altogether. New technology cannot
be stopped, one way or another it will be advanced. Let's face it, no technology
that has ever advanced has come with zero negative outcomes, however in the future
the positive products of cloning will outweigh the negative.
There are many positive uses for cloning that could literally change the world
for the better. Scientists can take a cloned human embryo and remove what are
called stem cells. Through scientific methods the stem cells could grow into an
entire organ. Using this organ in the body of the person who produced the cloned
embryo would have no risk of his or her body rejecting the organ. "Methods
may be found whereby they could be formed into replacement tissue and even entire
organs. They may eventually be used to repair injured or poorly functioning brains
and nervous systems"(Robinson). Many people who don't totally understand
the technology think that the scientists will have to clone an entire person,
extract the organ and just "throw away" the clone. This is not the process.
For example, say a person that was badly burned could use stem cells from his
cloned embryo and the cells would eventually grow into a large enough patch of
skin to be used on his injury. By all means there is no need to clone an entire
person to get one organ or tissue. Cloning can even be utilized in agriculture.
"For example, cloning technologies are already used in agriculture to produce
higher yield, better quality fruits and vegetables" (Davidson). Infertility
in women can be helped through cloning as well. The latest technique, somatic
nuclear transfer, which is the way Dolly, the sheep, was cloned, offers a potential
cure for infertility. Current methods of assisted reproduction are very inefficient.
Cloning technology offers infertile couples the promise of greatly improving the
odds of having a baby"(Watson).
What society is most afraid of is how cloning humans could affect society. It
is true that the abuse of cloning humans on a wide scale could possibly harm society
by causing a lack of diversity. That's just one con of cloning. There are plenty
more possible negative outcomes. Many people think that clones will somehow be
mindless robots with no soul.
The point is that we know these cons and have the power to not allow this to happen
by using legislature to dictate its uses. Just because there is a possible negative
aspect of a technology does not mean it should be stopped. "Clones should
be seen in the same way we view identical twins. They are two people who look
the same but have unique experiences and memories. They are, in essence, two different
people" (Clifford). The myth that madmen could clone an endless supply of
Hitler type rulers is just unrealistic altogether. If someone did somehow clone
Hitler by using some of the cells from the man himself, then there would be an
identical twin with the same DNA. However, Hitler's experiences were what made
him who he was. This clone would have to go through everything that the original
had, and then maybe it would get the madman way of thinking. "Therefore,
since clones are like identical twins they would have different fingerprints and
brain structures" (Clifford). Most people get this picture of a Xerox copy
of the person, and that they will act and think exactly alike the original. The
bottom line is that if there is no problem with identical twins today then there
will be no problem with clones.
It is common knowledge that religious societies believe that cloning is against
"God's will". There is the question of whether or not the child will
have a soul. The images of Frankenstein and his monster arise from the thought
of cloning humans. You can see that the "no soul" idea is ridiculous
if you look closely at how the process works. People seem to think that scientists
are "creating" life from dead matter. This is wrong. "Cloning merely
produces life from existing life. Cloning can be thought of as an extension of
procedures like in-vitro fertilization" (Schneider). Life from already living
cells is the heart of cloning. God gave that cell life and scientists are bringing
that same life into another identical form.
Cloning, like all other amazing technologies in this world can seem very intimidating
when looked at in a glance. Yet through studying and learning more about its strengths
and weaknesses, then one will see that it can serve society in many positive and
even life-saving ways.
Clifford, Jack. "The Cloning Debate". 3 Dec. 2000. <http://www.dailyemerald.com>
Connoly, Ted. "Cloning, Right or Wrong?". 3 Dec. 2000
Davidson, Bruce. "Medical Benefits of Cloning". 3 Dec. 2000.
Robinson, Bruce. "Human Cloning: Ethical Aspects". 3 Dec. 2000.
Schneider, Bennet. "Conceiving a Clone". 3 Dec. 2000. http://library.thinkquest.org/20015/ethics.html
Watson, Chris. "Somatic Cell Technology". 3 Dec. 2000. <http://www.humancloning.org/infertil.htm>