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Legal and Ethical Consequence of Cloning
Cause and Effect: Legalization of Cloning
There are forms of genetic engineering which could have great potential for our medical community, that could save hundreds of thousands of lives each year. However, with all great potential comes the possibility of abuse and misuse of power. Scary, the concept of the perfect race like Nazi Germany during World War II could become a very real possibility if human cloning were legal and publicly funded.
Cloning can be used in two separate ways, reproductively and therapeutically (Howe 4). With reproductive cloning, the entire premisel is to create another life form, another organism. In reality, it is literally copying verbatim, another life form that has already been created (Howe 5). As of today, no human has ever been born coming from a cloned embryo. In 2005, at New Castle University in the United Kingdom, the researchers there have made the claim that they have created a human embryo by copying the DNA sequence from a particle coming from a human male's skin cell. This embryo was reportedly never implanted into a woman or any other human, so it has not been gestated to term (Wilmut 318).
Yet cloning can be broken down further; there are three distinct types of cloning. The first type is somatic manipulation which which alters only the somatic gene of the individual; the somatic gene is responsible for the person's physical makeup and characteristics (Malhorta 213). If this type of cloning is utilized, a super race maybe created, and this could cause a genocide of certain minority races, or make other races second class citizens. Also, this power could be abused for profit. If one basket ball team wanted to create 12 Michael Jordans they could; a modeling agency could make an order to have 100 Heidi Klums.
Next is germ line genetic manipulation. This form of cloning can alter the genes which will be passed on to future generations (Wilmut 517). Many citizens believe this is more of an acceptable type of human cloning. With genetic manipulation a woman who wishes to get pregnant could simply go to their doctor and donate her eggs (and her partner's sperm or use a donor's) and come back to receive an implantation of an embryo which could be free of Parkinson's disease, breast cancer, Alzheimer's, and many (if not all) diseases. In addition, not only would her embryo be immune from these ailments, so would the embryo's entire line of heritage, this would be important for a family who knows that they have an inheritable mental or physical defect or disease (Wimut 518).
The last type of cloning is genetic fusion, this is where reproductive cloning takes place. In genetic transfusion, a human child is able to be created through an empty, unfertilized egg (Wilmut 522). In this process, the DNA of an individual is inserted in the egg, then implanted in a human woman and carried to full term; once the child is born, it is the exact copy of a human being that has already been created. Also, this type of cloning is where many individuals start to feel cloning is immoral; many times, the DNA of the egg is removed completely and stripped, and then implanted with the hybrid human DNA (Wilmut 523).
Morally and legally cloning is a hot topic debate with no end in sight. Many individuals who support cloning believe that their rights as individuals are being trampled upon, and that it is an enviable evolution of science. However, many religious leaders are opposed to cloning stating that it is interfering with God's plan for mankind, and that any attempt to play God is a sin against nature (Malhorta 275).