Cloning

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Cloning

Cloning is the process of creating a genetic duplicate of an

individual. Since the February 1997 announcement of the birth of

Dolly, a sheep cloned by Ian Wilmut, cloning research has increased

considerably. Cloning humans has recently become much more of a

possibility in society than it was years ago. Scientists are on the

edge of a huge breakthrough in the field of human cloning, and society

must ask itself whether or not it should be allowed. Many arguments

can be made for and against human cloning, but since it is unethical

and would take away individuality and disrupt social values, the

practice of cloning humans is one that government should ban and

society should not accept.

Proponents of human cloning may argue that it is just a logical

and inevitable advance in science research and technology. It is,

however, too risky for human subjects. At the present time, the

general consensus of the public is against human cloning.

(Fitzgerald 37) Within a few years' time, however, the medical

possibilities of human cloning may be attractive enough to change

public opinion. Research on human cloning would involve huge

risks for the initial clones, because any experiments in human

cloning would eventually have to be carried out on human beings.

Human cloning is unethical because the risks of this practice greatly

outweigh the benefits. The technique that produced Dolly the sheep was

successful in only 1 of 277 attempts. If this technique were attempted

in humans, it would risk miscarriages in the mother and severe

developmental problems in the child. Standard medical practice would

never allow the use of any drug or device with such little study and

without much additional animal research. (National Bioethics Advisory

Commission) The actual risks of physical harm to the cloned child

cannot be certain without conducting experiments on human beings. This

in itself is unethical because no one knows what will happen and the

child is in danger because "one does not know what is going to happen,

and one is^possibly leading to a child who could be disabled and have

developmental difficulties." (Professor John Robertson)

Human cloning would violate a person's individuality and take away

a child's identity. Cloned children would see themselves not as a

person, but as an object that their parents could discard because

of imperfection. A family is no longer a genuine family.

Children should be valued for who they are, not according to how

closely thy meet their parents' expectations. If a child were

cloned, his life would already have been lived by another human

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