refers to one or more offspring derived from a single ancestor. The great debate
on whether we should allow cloning remains, till today, a very controversial
issue. The ethics of human cloning has become a great issue in the past few
years. The advocates for both sides of the issue have their reasons, positive
and normative, to clone or not to clone to prove their stands.
opens up doors previously closed (and locked) to childless families.
couples as well as same-gender couples would have the option of having a
child of 'their own flesh and blood'.
If one member
carries a gene for a disease, cloning using a donor cell from the other
member would almost wipe out the risk of them having a child with that genetic
isn't just a leap in the way of science and technology. It is a giant leap
forward for medical science and technology.
provide scientists with a better insight to genetic diseases.
and test-tube babies were similarly objected against when they were first
introduced. These scientific breakthroughs were later widely accepted. Why
can't cloning follow in their footsteps?
hostility to human reproductive cloning may be based on an 'illogical
and transient fear of a new technology.' "
BioNews quoting the British Medical Association.
A ban on cloning
would effectively deprive people of the right to reproduce and restrict
the freedom of scientists. The latter will be contrary to what scientists
have in mind initially - to develop science and technology with no given
the [constitutional] right of privacy means anything, it is the right
of the individual, married or single, to be free from unwarranted governmental
intrusion into matters so fundamentally affecting a person, as the decision
whether to bear or beget a child."
Supreme Court of the United States of America
we know little about how closely linked our personalities are to our genetic
make, it is generally agreed that an individual is not shaped by genes alone.
Even if someone
decided to produce a clone using Hitler's genes, the output may not be the
Hitler we are all so familiar with. Brought up in a gentler environment
where social and racial equality is emphasized, the Hitler clone may not
turn out to be Hitler himself.
the environment in which an individual grows up in plays as much, if not
more, of an important role in the resulting personality of the individual.
for the ethical and moral issues...
would be give as much legal right as any other human twin or human produced
by other reproductive technologies such as in-vitro fertilisation.
is a ball of cells, with the potential to develop into a whole human being
because the cells are still in their blank state (have not assumed any definitions),
and will be able to develop into any part of a human body. However, it must
be noted that at this point in time, it is NOT a whole human being. It is
devoid of conciousness, less to say thought or feeling. More importantly,
it has hardly any history to it, unlike a comatose human being. This makes
it just as much a bunch of skin cells or a bunch of muscle cells as it is
a bunch of cells which may develop into anything else that is required to
form an entire human being.
The word 'natural'
takes an arbitrary standard according to the individual. (In-vitro fertilization
was previously considered to be un-natural, but is now a widely accepted
cloning is carried out by Mother Nature as well. Some organisms, including
certain snails and shrimp, reproduce only through cloning. Identical twins
are also clones. Cloning can be therefore seen as a human extension of
what Nature apparently permits.
In all possibilities,
a clone would be as much of a human, and have as much of a soul as a natural
How is human
dignity an issue in cloning?
In view of
fairness and equal opportunity to all, isn't it unreasonable to let only
fertile heterosexual couples have children? Wouldn't that be akin to a case
scenario where clothes are given out solely by a central authority, and
only people with money are given the 'right' to buy them? Clothes can be
considered a gift rather than a necessity as well, since we are born into
the world without clothes and they are not an essential to our basic survival.
If given the
choice, would we not want to have perfectly healthy children, who are free
from the risk of hereditary diseases such as hereditary anemia?
are simply too many factors we are still unsure of in cloning.
which have only involved animals thus far, out of hundreds of sets of experiments,
only a few turn out viable, and even then, most of the cloned animals are
Are we willing
to take the risk of possibly producing deformed children?
It is generally
perceived as acceptable to destroy the cloned animals should they be deformed,
but not unlike the debate over abortion, should we destroy the deformed
have a right to live?
have a right to take away their lives?
have a right to create these lives?
Dolly the cloned
sheep had certain characteristics, which typically belong to older animals,
in her DNA.Could this mean that Dolly would eventually show signs of inherited
genetic damage through premature aging or some other disorder? (these fears
are seemingly unfounded because Dolly is showing normal signs of aging for
clones turn out likewise? Could we bear to witness a child of few months
showing signs of diseases which typically affects adults only?
think about the dangerous power it would give us and the disastrous implications
should someone abuse this power.
What if Hitler
lived in a time where cloning was possible? What if someone with similar
ideals (i.e. to let a single 'superior' race take over the world) lives
in a time where cloning is possible?
What if another
Hitler is cloned? Will we see another Holocaust?
are also countless ethical and religious issues behind the case for opposition
clone be given as much rights as a human being as an un-cloned human?
clone would be a human being and deserve all the rights and privileges
that a non-cloned human has. A clone should not be a second-class citizen.
It is speculated that they would be considered as such".
are opposed to the idea of man 'playing God'. Most people do believe that
we should accept what nature has given us, and have no right to custom make
another human being.
believe that embryos can be considered as human beings with human rights
since they have the potential to grow into such. Therefore, collecting surplus
embryos and simply storing them in a deep-freeze as a commodity seems the
equivalent of deep-freezing full-grown human bodies.
be as 'human' as uncloned humans? Would they have a soul? Or would they
simply be walking genetic doubles?
unacceptable and incompatible with human dignity.
of research finds its borders where human dignity is affected"
Research Minister, Ms Edelgard Bulmahn, as told to Berliner Zeitung
a gift, not a due, for married couples. Cloning is asexual replication -
not sexual reproduction, Nature's way of conferring children.