What if while walking down the street you encountered someone who looked exactly like you? Would you stare in amazement or would your heart be filled with fear? At first some people may look upon the idea of cloning with disgust and question themselves if humans should play God while others would be interested and study the many possibilities that cloning offers. This illustrates the path that cloning has taken over the latter part of the twentieth century.
At first, when cloning was brought up in conversations, people tended to fearfully think of an army of identical persons marching across the earth in hopes of ruling humans. This and many other absurd notions of clones stem from science fiction movies and books where clones are distorted into horrid, monstrous beasts. In Ira Levin's science fiction book, The Boys of Brazil, baby Hitlers are cloned in order to take over Hitler's dream of his race dominating the world (Harris 361). This distortion was, and still is, a common misconception of the goals of cloning. In reality, cloning, along with its counterpart gene therapy, is not intended for the production of a fully developed individual. Instead, cloning and gene therapy are about the medical advancement of the world's population through the control of diseases and replacement of missing hormones and organs. Although there are arguments against them, the possibilities of cloning and gene therapy are important for the production of organs and hormones and as a means to control diseases, but both must also be strictly regulated in order to outlaw the production of fully-developed human clones.
Until 1997 the chance of mammalian cloning seemed just about as unlikely as finding a cure for AID...
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...mones and the control of disease to ensure the future health of the human race. Like In Vitro fertilization, humans need to open their eyes and accept these new techniques that are creeping over the horizon which can not only save lives, but increase our longevity as a society. Many critics of cloning and gene therapy do not stop to think about the possibilities of these technologies or about the possibility that one of their offspring could need some genetically engineered or cloned substance to save their life in the future. They worry about one or two scientists trying to clone humans instead of the possibilities that will be available to the world to fight disease. If humans would just take a look at the bigger picture they would realize that cloning and gene therapy will not be the downfall of society, but will increase our longevity and health as a whole.
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