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Should We Clone Humans?

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Science has advanced greatly in a short amount of time. Cloning of mammals has now been made possible. Cloning is the result of a genetic copy of the parent organism. This process occurs naturally as a form of asexual reproduction, but that is only found in certain bacteria and plants. For cloning to be done in mammals, you would have to mix an empty egg cell from one mammal with the DNA cell of the mammal you would like to clone, into one last mammal. Scientist carefully insert the DNA into the empty egg cell, and put it in the womb of the third mammal to produce an exact clone. The first mammal to be cloned was Dolly the Sheep in 1996, who died in 2003. Because science has advanced so quickly, people have very mixed views about this cloning process, and the question still remains, “Should we clone humans?”. There are several key advantages and disadvantages that could make or break our society if cloning humans was carried out.

An advantage that cloning offers includes a new way for infertile couples to try to have their own baby. Fertility doctors believe that they could be the safer choice to help clone couples looking to have a baby, mainly because of their experience as being fertility doctors. Another advantage that cloning would provide for society is a way to immediately help people who may need new organs, but cannot find a donor in time or at all. If we cloned humans, we could have a copy of each person’s organs as a backup to transplant on hand. Some people also believe that cloning would in a sense “bring back the dead”. If someone preserves some of their cells, they could clone a dead person. Some of these people would also like to clone themselves before they die so they could leave a copy of themselves behind for their children or grandchildren. Also, scientists see cloning a new way of farming animals for our benefit. Instead of waiting for animals to sexually reproduce normally, they believe they could clone animals to have sufficient livestock.

However, there are many disadvantages that cloning poses as well. Scientists have already cloned many animals, but they all show signs of untreatable life threatening problems, they die at a younger age because the cells are older and develop incorrectly, and that actually only 2 or 3 out of 100 cells will even clone positively. Because of all this suffering that can go on, people believe it is unethical to put animals through this type of torture, much less humans. Many animals that are the result of cloning experience strange problems, like heavy breathing, bloated stomaches, lack of oxygen intake, and more. They have simply had to be put down to stop the pain. Due to the difficult process of gathering all the cells and all the work and precision that is required to clone, each cloning case would be very expensive. Some don’t believe the theory of “bringing the dead back” through cloning, because the minds would be different, even in the genetic copy clone. Others believe it is purely unethical to clone humans, because it would be letting scientific technology intervene in every process of life, even something like reproduction. This scares people, because it makes them afraid of what other advances science could make in the coming years.

Personally, I do not believe that humans should be cloned. I understand the advantages, but I feel that the disadvantages heavily outweigh them. Yes, it would be nice for infertile couples to have a chance at having a child, and it would be great for the economy if we could clone farm animals for our benefit. But to me, none of this is as important as preventing a living thing from suffering, or having a shortened life. If infertile couples cannot have a baby, maybe isn’t meant for them to have children. Or they could do some good and contribute to helping the world by adopting a child in need. Yes, it is unfortunate that the economy is suffering, but it doesn’t seem realistic to clone animals for our benefit, especially if they are going to have life threatening health issues. As a scientist from the BBC documentary “Cloning the First Human” said, “You aren’t going to see a cow grazing with an oxygen tank strapped to its back.” I believe this is torture to animals, and as I said before, unrealistic. I am also a Christian, and I don’t believe that people should seek ways to “stay on earth” after their time is up. This isn’t only a Christian belief. Many religions believe this, as well as many atheists. Overall, I don’t believe that society is missing out on much because of not cloning humans. I think the value of life is much greater than the seemingly selfish benefits of cloning humans, such as having your own child, improving farming and getting more money. Maybe in the future cloning will be more important, but for now, I do not believe we should clone a human.




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Jents1116 said...
Sept. 27, 2012 at 1:01 pm:
I agree! I think cloning is a major scientific milestone however, I feel that it is still in a trial and error phase. I, like you, feel that cloning is in the beginning stages and that the disadvantages are far greater than the advantages. Like anything in our society, with time and technology it will soon reach a functional point and be productive/effective but we are not there yet! Great article!
 
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Mrs. K. said...
Sept. 19, 2012 at 5:13 pm:
Wow Shayla! This is an excellent piece! Very thought provoking.
 
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