Should cloning be banned?

The issue of cloning has always been around in our everyday lives.  Cloning was common in movies such as Jurassic Park and The Lost World, where cloning seemed to be an idea of fantasy and not reality.  The idea that scientist could just take a little DNA from a dead mosquito and turn it into something that could tower over a skyscraper was very intriguing to most people.   On the other hand, there were movies such as Judd Dredd and Alien Resurrection, in which cloning was necessary in order to save lives.  That was a little more farfetched, but no less enthralling.   The idea of even cloning oneself came up in the movie Multiplicity.  The idea seemed common but unaccomplished yet, for who would not want an extra pair of hands or better yet an extra brain?  However, these movies are just that…movies.   It was not until Dolly, who was acknowledged to be the first cloned mammal (sheep), was cloned and conceived that cloning became an actual reality.    It was looked upon in wonder and much skepticism of what would happen next.  When Richard Seed, a renowned scientist, decided he was going to clone his fourth wife, mass hysteria arose.  Different countries all over the world tried to pass laws to ban cloning despite being unsuccessful.  Cloning has potential for untreatable infertility as well as the ability to save endangered species, and it is bringing a lot to the medical field.  It should not be prohibited but strongly regulated.

 The most prevalent reason that cloning should not be banned is its medical value.  There are already drug and medicine manufactures all over the world who are working on products that can be produced in cows’ milk or even sheep or goats milk when the trait is cloned.  Right now they are trying to produce vaccines against Malaria, antibodies against HIV, as well as proteins to treat hemophilia, muscle disease, internal intestinal infections, rheumatoid arthritis, cystic fibrosis and emphysema (Sinhai,).  These same companies are also working on proteins to help digest fat and proteins to serve as nutritional supplements for infants, as well as different proteins, which are found in human blood, in cow’s milk.  The supply of blood donors is decreasing because of the increasing standards one has to meet before they can give blood.  There is a constant demand for these proteins such as serum-album and fibrinogen.  Serum-album is used during surgeries to maintain the patient’s blood pressure, and fibrinogen, is responsible for blood clotting.   They are looking to make fibrinogen into a new type of bandage.  None of these treatments would be possible in the future if cloning were banned.

 Consider a generic couple who is married.  They have done everything possible to try to conceive.  However, it is just not medically possible.  A fertility clinic tells them about the option of cloning.  They are intrigued and want to hear more. They hear both the positive reasons and negative reasons why they should or should not consider cloning.  They decide to do it.  They spare no medical expense because they have always wanted a child.  Should they be condemned?  Who is to decide?  If there is no other way and they have heard both sides of the argument, there is nothing wrong with it.  They are still going to raise that child as their own with no regards to how he/she was conceived.  On a more personal note, I have had cancer when I was a child.  My parents went through a lot with me, not knowing whether I would survive.  I was very fortunate being so young at the time.  I did not realize the seriousness of my situation.   I want to have children some time in the future.  The idea that my children might have cancer makes me hesitate.  Do I want to go through what my parents did?  Call me selfish or what you will.  I do not want to willingly have a child and watch my child suffer.  What about my grandchildren.  Will they have cancer?  The idea that cloning can help scientist find cures for cancer gives me hope.  With more advancement in the medical field, I have hope that they might be able to catch the trait and treat it in the womb.   There would be no way someone could convince me to ban cloning if it could benefit future parents who can not have a child any other way or could benefit my future child.

 In addition, scientist will most likely find a way to save endangered species using the benefits of cloning.  Our national bird has always been one to make us all proud.  Its beauty and majestic character makes it a shame that it is almost an endangered species.  There are many other species of wild life animals such as the Texas Red Wolf, which are endangered.  Scientist can clone more of these animals and reintroduce them back into the wild.  Animals are not only the ones who are endangered.  There are several plant species, which are also endangered.  What possible medicines could we be missing out on? Human intervention in the wild has caused many endangered species.  Cloning can be a way for humans to make up for their intrusion with nature.

 Even with all the possible benefits cloning would bring us, there will be those who go past the natural boundary of life.  Therefore cloning will need strict regulation.  The best way to do that is to form a worldwide organization with delegates from each country, each experts in biology and having vast knowledge of cloning, despite the extreme difficulties accomplishing this task.  However this is the only logical solution.  We could lose too much if we ban cloning.  Additionally, if cloning were banned in this country, there would be most likely other countries in which it is not.  There would be those who would go to another country to be treated or to have a child.  Even then there will be “black markets that may be worth risking when the evils of legislation would even be worse” (Tribe).  The only way cloning could be evil in regards to conception is if the child is not carried by its potential parents.  If science finds a way to create an artificial womb, to raise a child without his or her natural parents involved in the process, that would be the greatest evil. The bond between mother and child during pregnancy can never exist if Science raises a child instead of its ‘parents’. There must be standards.  The organization should agree on a worldwide standard to be set for all with the penalties if it is not followed.

The general uninformed John Doe does not know about all the benefits.  All they think about is about is what if someone creates a “veritable army of Hiltlers, ruthless and remorseless bigots who kept reproducing themselves until they finished what the historical Hitler failed to do: annihilate us’’ (Elshtain).  In retort to that, a child born is still a child.  They have to grow up just like any other child. Behaviorist will tell us that their environment growing up will effect their behavior and so forth.  These clones will not grow up in the same environment that Hitler did and therefore will not be another Hitler.   What about the theory, cloning is unnatural and it goes against God’s natural plan of live.  It is also true that God made us who we are, and to evolve and think.  Therefore one way of thinking is that God gave us the knowledge to make cloning a reality and therefore it is part of God’s natural plan.  Another controversy involving cloning is the possibility that children would be raised for the benefit of the “parent” only for its organs. If this were to occur, it would be not only appalling but also barbaric, for once a child is born, a child is a human being endowed with the rights of any other individual. That is why standards and regulations are needed.  However, if just the organs are cloned, that would be another story.

Cloning is too valuable to mankind to prohibit.  It brings enormous advance possibilities to the medical field.  Who would be the one to volunteer to tell an HIV diagnosed patient?  Research was going on for antibodies but was stopped because cloning was banned.  Cloning also brings invaluable ways of reproduction.  True, they are unlike the original we have brought up thinking about, but so is invitro.  The potential cloning brings to save endangered species is self-explanatory.  What animal lover would not want to stop different species from becoming extinct?  Furthermore, what else would we lose if cloning were banned?

Michelle Halby at 
Please email me if you have any questions regarding my sources or ideas.

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