Raising Awareness about Cloning and Its Purpose
If you could end world hunger, or even theoretically exponentially extend your own life or the life of others, would you do it? Even if the way to do it is controversial and has been viewed as unethical? Scientists all over the world have researched into the field of cloning to see how and if cloning could help the world. The topic of cloning not just animals but humans as well has been around for years now. Along with being around for a decent amount of time it has also been tested in many different countries around the world. Many people do see how cloning could be a benefit to the world, but many others consider the idea to mangle with the “natural order” of the world. I believe due to advances in technology, cloning will become one of the largest industries in the world. As Severino Antinori, a doctor of gynecology and embryologist, stated “Cloning creates ordinary children. They will be unique individuals, not photocopies of individuals”. In my opinion, cloning could, if used correctly, change how life is lived on Earth.
In order fully comprehend what cloning truly is, we first need to understand what the three different types of cloning are beginning with gene cloning. Gene cloning is defined as producing copies of genes or segments of DNA. Gene cloning is also the manipulation of those genes when they are cloned. Gene cloning is used for many different applications. For example, gene cloning can be used to potentially cure all sorts of genetic diseases such as Cystic Fibrosis and Severe Combined Immunodeficiency (SCID) (Munye 1). Gene cloning could also be used to, theoretically, add a gene to a being that is missing a gene. This process involves splicing two genes in order to make a new one. This process can also involve making a new part of a gene for a gene that has defects. Not many tests have been performed with gene cloning because many variables such as genes not connecting properly, or wrong gene splicing could occur when the genes are split and then made into new genes (NGHRI 1).
The next type of cloning is called therapeutic cloning. In therapeutic cloning, the nucleus of a cell is put into a fertilized egg which has no nucleus. The egg, now with the new nucleus, starts to divide many times over in order to form a blastocyst. Scientists will then extract stem cells from said blastocyte and use them to grow different cells for patients who have diseases (Sheil 1). To put it in simpler terms, scientists grow a sack of stems cells that they use to treat patients’ diseases. Therapeutic cloning is mostly used for skin diseases like Hidradenitis Suppurativa (HS), Epidermolysis Bullosa, and Lichen Sclerosis. In a simpler way therapeutic cloning is making new cells for people who have disease in which they need cells to improve their wellbeing. Advocates of human therapeutic cloning say that the practice could provide genetically identical cells for regenerative medicine, as well as tissue and organ transplants (Kumar 4). The main point of therapeutic cloning is that a person’s own cells can be used to help said person (Sheil 5). This process takes out the need to introduce a foreign body to a person who is in bad health. (Sheil 5).
The third and last type of cloning is reproductive cloning. Reproductive cloning is the most known of and well-known type of cloning. Reproductive cloning is referenced as the main type of cloning by many people (Kumar 7). Along with being the most well-known cloning, it is also the simplest type of cloning to understand. Reproductive cloning is making an entirely new individual out of someone’s or something’s genetic code, or what’s more well-known, making an exact replica of someone or something using their DNA. In 1996 reproductive cloning was used on a lamb to see how the lamb clone would behave and if it would live the same amount of time a non-cloned lamb (NGHRI 1). Two years after that in 1998, Japanese researchers attempted to clone eight calves from one cow, they were 50% successful with four calves surviving (NHGRI 1). It is widely agreed upon that women and children need to be protected, if any women or children should be cloned, they should get the same protections as a normal human (Dresser 1). Due to laws and sanctions all over the world that have banned human cloning nobody has been able to test it to see if it works. This is a mistake because not allowing scientists to test their theories on human cloning is just as unfavorable, if not worse, than not being educated about the subject. In order to know if something is bad, we must test it, and banning an idea like human cloning only based on bias and belief that it is unethical is wrong.
I agree with cloning because I believe that it has many applications that can be useful to society. Along with all the advancements in technology and the potential the cloning has, I believe that in the future it will become an enormous impact in people’s lives. There are many situations where cloning could be useful to people, for example, if a couple cannot have a child the parents could use cloning to get a child that has both parents’ genes (Kumar 4). Cloning could also be used to help children who have a high probability of being born with a genetic disease. Using gene cloning scientists could help children be born without a genetic defect (Kumar 5). Some scientists also believe that human cloning could remove the factor of human aging (Kumar 5). All the good that could come from cloning is impossible to see. Imagine if great minds like, Stephen Hawking, Albert Einstein, or even Leonardo da Vinci were still around today. They could have possible catapulted the entire world into a new era simply if they had longer to live. If cloning could keep great minds like them alive, then it should be used to help the world move forward.
I would like to take a minute to address the opposition. Cloning is a relatively new field of study, as expected, there are bound to be those who disagree with the idea of making artificial humans or animals. Those on the opposition will state, cloning could undermine basic elements of a loving, nurturing family (Baird 5). However, this is incorrect because if a clone of let’s say a certain family’s eldest son is created, then it would be an exact replica of the original so it would still be the same person they would care about. Another statement the opposition makes is that cloning is an unethical practice. Not only is it, in a sense, messing with the natural order of not only human reproduction but also disrupting natural selection (“Special Issue: The Threat of Human Cloning Ethics, Recent Developments, and the Case for Action.” 76). Nonetheless, both statements are incorrect because therapeutic cloning could be used to cure mental or physical diseases that the child could have been born with, this also would allow for better genes to be passed down if said person with therapeutic cloning had children. Some in the opposition state that is also wrong to clone animals in order to just raise them to kill and eat them (Chadwick 8). This is also mistaken because we, as in all humans, are already raising animals for the sole purpose of eating them. While all these statements made by the opposition are understandable, they are incorrect due to all the benefits that therapeutic, reproductive, and gene cloning could bring for everyone.
The fact of the matter is that cloning could possible pave the way for our future. Being uninformed about cloning is one of the main reasons why many people disagree with it. Ruling out cloning because of how unethical or immoral it sounds, in my opinion, would be a colossal mistake. We cannot continue to believe false accusations about cloning, we must educate ourselves. By going on websites such as geneticsandsociety.org which is a site for research on cloning, we could get a more in depth look at what cloning is and what it could mean for us. Using resources such as these are our best way to get information on cloning. Also, by signing up with email with the National Human Genome Research Institute, we can get updates on the progress that the government is making with cloning. We should be thinking about all the positive applications that cloning can bring to not only adults be to children as well. Although it is a new field of research, we should still educate ourselves on the possible applications and benefits of cloning. I agree with cloning because it can lead to new and helpful possibilities for everyone.
Cite this Essay
To export a reference to this article please select a referencing style below