Cloning...a point of view

Essay by wildomuff14University, Bachelor'sA+, November 2004

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The term clone evokes rather frightening thoughts by many. Images of armies of identical people lacking individuality remind many of Aldous Huxley's fiction of a genetically engineered world. Despite the general public fear of this fictional view of cloning, science has a purer purpose of clones. Cloning in one sense is modern science's attempt to improve the statistics of natural reproduction. Reproduction naturally is inefficient; however, with the medical technology now available, science is helping improve the odds of embryo survival. Even the most famous clone, Dolly, was not a copy of a single adult sheep, rather a twin of a sheep embryo. In fact, most reproductive clones today are merely engineered twins. Scientists separate an embryo into two at an early stage, different only to natural twins by the method of separation. These clones, like their natural counterparts, will most likely develop into very different individuals. Other uses of human cloning are expected to allow medical breakthroughs that would revolutionize life for millions.

Using adult cells, failing organs could be re-grown, plastic surgery could be safer and more natural, and spinal injury victims could have a second chance at a normal life. Fears that cloning would lead to a society of identical people are unfounded. Science is the first to show how this would never happen. The uncertainty of our environment requires genetic diversity in any species for survival. A single set of genes would have no chance against mutating and changing viruses or other threatening environmental conditions.

Scientifically, there is very compelling evidence to support a complete ban on cloning at this time. With the technology we have today, it is impossible to clone a human without destroying at least one other embryo. Consequently, it is impossible to clone a human without destroying a human life. This is...