Just imagine! Having a clone, an exact identical to replace your loved one (father, mother, son, daughter, pet) after their unexpected demise! How nice to have an identical person just like the one you lost? Wouldn’t it help to lessen the sorrow a bit? Making use of technology for the benefit of mankind is what all actually desire. But, are the benefits of cloning as beneficial? Or, are the repercussions of making exact genetic copy of another not without danger and exploitation?
Using the Technology of Cloning for Replicating Mankind
Sometimes, I wonder do we really know what cloning is all about. The last we heard (at least I heard) was the news about a possible cloning of humans. Before that, I had heard of the early demise of Dolly, the first mammal to be cloned from an adult DNA. She had to be put to sleep because of the cancer and arthritis that was troubling her immensely. Cloning an animal is making an exact copy of that being while cloning a gene is copying the DNA sequence of that gene into a smaller DNA piece. A clone is actually a much younger identical twin of the specimen from whom the gene is taken. Of course, the original and the clone will have different set of fingerprints and will also have different personalities.
Many people have fears about this new field of technology that will make a replica of humans. Some cite religion saying that cloning cannot be justified as it would be going against the law of nature.
‘God didn’t intend it to be this way,’ they say.
Some fear that many negative characters will be created once again due to cloning causing problems in an already miserable world.
There are others who say that such a product or human being (a cloned one) will only be treated as a second class citizen as he/she is born out of a new mode of technology. They will be discriminated against, we are told for being born differently. If cloning was legalized, would we be heading towards a stage where people are cloned the moment they die like in the movie ‘The 6th Day?’
There are genuine fears like there were fears when science was made use of to invent and put those inventions into action for the benefit of the whole of mankind. Even then, religious beliefs and God were taken as reasons to not make use of the scientific developments. Later, as time passed, people realized the value of it all and they began to accept it. Maybe, cloning is something like that? Or is it? About the fear of negative characters being cloned and armies of destruction formed, all clones are like twins, maybe same in looks but different in nature, behavior and habits. After all, not all twins are identical in thoughts and actions. They are different personalities. The same applies here and when they are born later, it becomes more apparent that genetics alone cannot determine behavior. It is the environment too with different memories for different people (the clones and the originals). So, if a gene from say Hitler was taken for cloning you might even get a musician or a priest for a personality, very unlike the original Hitler. About clones being discriminated against, that’s a possibility even for ordinary non-cloned persons like us. Cloning is like any other means of producing a child like say, vitro fertilization or any method that helps in procreation.
Where cloning could possibly be of real help (keeping aside all fears and worries) is like in transplant when cloning could help people who have lost some part of their bodies in an accident or a war. Imagine how much help that would be. Many women who are unable to become mothers could make use of cloning to have that child of ‘their own.’ Of course, there are the usual dangers like black marketing of fetuses from donors. But, that is a risk that any new scientific technology carries. The hidden queries about the probable harm that cloning could cause will always be there. With such a technology in hand, cloning could improve life and fight disease but it could also mentally and physically harm humans. But, it seems to be a reality what with research on to clone humans. Why don’t we spend more time, energy and money on destroying poverty, ignorance and crime instead?
We have a choice or don’t we? Will be interested to know what you feel.