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Cloning can be defined as the process of producing an embryo which has similar genes to its parents and implanting it to a surrogate mother. A number of organizations have also given slightly different definitions for cloning. One such definition is that cloning is the preservation of cells in cultures to produce tissues, organs and even embryos (Head, 2010, p. 1).
It is a method of reproduction that is viewed as a prospective haven for people with reproduction problems. Cloning has attracted substantial ethics-related questions since its discovery. The first clone was a lamb named Dolly and since its birth, the possibilities and speculations of human cloning has attracted a lot of ethical questions concerning the same.
Up to date, the acceptability of human cloning is depended on personal opinion and its applicability is largely based on theory (Head, 2010, p. 1). This is despite the fact that cloning of cells to form tissues has been widely used in therapeutic procedures to treat people in hospital. Let us have a look at the benefits and the disadvantages of cloning.
Disadvantages of cloning humans
Human cloning has more disadvantages than its benefits. Firstly, it is true that cloning is not in accordance with the Christian faith. Thus Christians, who make the world’s most popular religion, will feel as if they are playing God if they get involved in cloning activities. Among the weightiest arguments against cloning is the fact that the cloning of embryos makes them vulnerable and therefore the resultant child may develop serious problems for the rest of his/her life.
However, scientists argue that cloning may be developed to be more safe that the normal delivery as more advancements are made. Another disadvantage associated with human cloning is the fact that while cloning a human being, a number of embryos may be killed during testing (Farnsworth, 2000, p. 1). This is, arguably, killing of a human being and thus it taints the ethics behind the practice of human cloning.
There is also the issue about the expectations that people are bound to have on their clones. The original person will have very high expectations on the clone and this could lead to considerable pressure on the clone and disappointments on the part of the original person. This can be explained by the fact that with the identity that identical twins have and their differences in personality, nothing better is expected from clones.
Another worry is that since clones will be known to be copies of people, they may be discriminated against and thus their lives would be difficult. However baseless this claim appears to be, it has a point and its applicability would depend on how human clones would look. If they will be such that a person can identify a clone just by looking at him/her, then the argument is justified.
As mentioned above the technology of cloning is still inferior. During the development of the first clone, Dolly, more than 250 eggs were used and only one survived. It is thus apparent that application of this technology would have major drawbacks in terms of taking chances on life. It is possible that during testing, a number of embryos would be formed before the desirable embryo is formed.
This means that these embryos may be frozen for future use (Head, 2010, p. 1) or even destroyed, if their standards are unacceptable. This may be taken as the treating of a human being as an animal and it could attract considerable action by human rights activists. Besides the possible protests by human rights activists, the cloning process may prove to be haunting to the doctors in case they realize that they have been terminating lives by experimentation.
Benefits of cloning
Cloning is associated with a number of benefits that make pro-cloning activists believe strongly in their convictions. For instance, cloning of human cells has been constructively applied in therapeutic cloning to which is used largely during organ transplant mts. It is used to ensure that the donated organ fits the patient and saves the patient from taking lots o drugs normally meant to suppress immunity.
However, most of these benefits are beaten by logic and a closer examination reveals the fact that we should not encourage cloning of human beings. One of the benefits of cloning is the fact that it is able to provide children to people with fertility problems.
However, it will be more reasonable to adopt homeless kids and offer them a home instead of undergoing the risky cloning procedure. Another benefit of cloning that is frequently cited by pro-cloning activists is the fact that people with genetic illnesses who do not wish to pass their sicknesses to their kids have an option with cloning. However, it is arguable that such people will do better with adoption of the numerous homeless children in orphanages.
It has been widely argued that adoption of cloning as a legal medical exercise would lead to creation of people with perfected characteristics since the genes that are used are often chosen and it is logical that a person wishing to get a child will go for a donor with good characteristics. This is both a good thing and a bad thing. This is because such people will not have a lot of heath and other problems but it will lead to a set-up that could bring problems.
These problems will most probably be experienced in social life. Among the evidently controversial benefits of cloning is the idea of body replacements which is so far theoretical. It suggests that a person having a given problem can be reconstructed to live as another person who does not have the problems he/she has. This is among the suggestions associated with cloning that has made people question the ethical appropriateness of cloning (McKay, 2010, p. 1).
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As evidenced in the discussion above, my opinion about the cloning controversy is that, in as much as cloning is a highly admirable technological advancement, it is wrong to pursue human cloning. This statement is made with reference to the cloning of cells to form an embryo.
It is wrong to try to pursue ways of making life other than the way that God created us to use. It is no wonder that the process of cloning cells to form embryos is associated with a myriad of problems. Even for people who do not believe that God exists, should be discouraged by the killing of tens or hundreds of embryos in the lab during the testing period.
Additionally, the uncertainties that face human clones in terms of health, similarity to the original person and the like should also discourage people from taking such kinds of people (Farnsworth, 2000, p. 1). It is clear that anyone supporting embryo-forming cloning has not given the subject a keener thought since so many possible problems that could come with child-formation cloning can easily be acquired.
Despite the fact that cell-physiology is a complex process and it is normally cheaper to engage in tissue growth cloning. This kind of cloning is simpler and it has better objectives. This is because most clone-generated tissues are used by doctors to save lives in hospitals by helping them to treat major health complications (McKay, 2010, p. 1).
Humans have repeatedly got themselves into problems after doing things just because they could do them. We should thus be very careful before we start using any discovery in a bid to benefit from it. It is specifically necessary for a re-examination of the intricacies of cloning in order to make informed decisions on whether to legalize it or not.
Cloning should be studied deeply to establish the dangers it poses to a child it bears. At the same time, we should ensure that we fully understand the ethical issues posed by cloning before we claim to be pro-cloning. It is only in the case of commendable technological advancement that embryonic cloning should be allowed.
This is because some measures will have been put in place to ensure that we do not get disappointed after paying for cloning services. It can be clearly seen that the disadvantages of cloning outweigh its benefits and thus cloning should be discouraged at all cost.
Farnsworth, J. (2000). To clone or not to clone: The Ethical Question. Retrieved from http://www.thefarnsworths.com/science/cloning.htm
Head, T. (2010). Should human cloning be banned? Retrieved from https://www.thoughtco.com/should-human-cloning-be-banned-721486
McKay, C. (2010). Should the cloning of human beings be prohibited? Retrieved from http://www.scienceclarified.com/dispute/Vol-2/Should-the-cloning-of-human-beings-be-prohibited.html