Example research essay topic: Ethical Questions To Cloning – 882 words

Of all the terms coined by scientists which have
entered popular vocabulary, ‘clone’ has become one
of the more emotive. The question shakes us all to
our very souls. For humans to consider the cloning
of one another forces them all to question the
very concepts of right and wrong. The cloning of
any species, whether they be human or non-human,
is ethically and morally wrong. Scientists and
ethicists alike have debated the implications of
human and non-human cloning extensively since 1997
when scientists at the Roslin Institute in
Scotland produced Dolly. No direct conclusions
have been drawn, but compelling arguments state
that cloning of both human and non-human species
results in harmful physical and psychological
effects on both groups.

The following issues
dealing with cloning and its ethical and moral
implications will be addressed: cloning of human
beings would result in severe psychological
effects in the cloned child, and that the cloning
of non-human species subjects them to unethical or
moral treatment for human needs. The possible
physical damage that could be done if human
cloning became a reality is obvious when one looks
at the sheer loss of life that occurred before the
birth of Dolly. Less than ten percent of the
initial transfers survive to be healthy creatures.
There were 277 trial implants of nuclei. Nineteen
of those 277 were deemed healthy while the others
were discarded. Five of those nineteen survived,
but four of them died within ten days of birth of
sever abnormalities. Dolly was the only one to
survive (Fact: Adler 1996).

If those nuclei were
human, “the cellular body count would look like
sheer carnage” (Logic: Kluger 1997). Even Ian
Wilmut, one of the scientists accredited with the
cloning phenomenon at the Roslin Institute agrees,
“the more you interfere with reproduction, the
more danger there is of things going wrong”
(Expert Opinion). The psychological effects of
cloning are less obvious, but none the less, very
plausible. In addition to physical harms, there!
are worries about the psychological harms on
cloned human children. One of those harms is the
loss of identity, or sense of uniqueness and
individuality. Many argue that cloning crates
serious issues of identity and individuality and
forces humans to consider the definition of self.
Gilbert Meilaender commented on the importance of
genetic uniqueness not only to the child but to
the parent as well when he appeared before the
National Bioethics Advisory Commission on March
13, 1997.

He states that “children begin with a
kind of genetic independence of [the parent]. They
replicate neither their father nor their mother.
That is a reminder of the independence that [the
parent] must eventually grant them…To lose even
in principle this sense of the child as a gift
will not be good for the children” (Expert
Opinion). Others look souly at the child, like
philosopher Hans Jonas. He suggests that humans
have an inherent “right to ignorance” or a quality
of “separateness.” Hum! an cloning, in which there
is a time gap between the beginning of the lives
of the earlier and later twin, is fundamentally
different from homozygous twins that are born at
the same time and have a simultaneous beginning of
their lives. Ignorance of the effect of one’s
genes on one’s future is necessary for the
spontaneous construction of life and self (Jonas
1974). Human cloning is obviously damaging to both
the family of and the cloned child.

It is harder
to convince that non-human cloning is wrong and
unethical, but it is just the same. The cloning of
a non-human species subjects them to unethical
treatment purely for human needs (Expert Opinion:
Price 97). Western culture and tradition has long
held the belief that the treatment of animals
should be guided by different ethical standards
than the treatment of humans. Animals have been
seen as non feeling and savage beasts since time
began. Humans in general have no problem with
seeing animals as objects to be used whenever it
becomes necessary. But what would happen if humans
started to use animals as body for growing human
organs? Where is the line drawn between human and
non human? If a primate was cloned so that it grew
human lungs, liver, kidneys, and heart., what
would it then be? What if we were to learn how to
clone functioning brains and have them grow inside
of chimps? Would non-human primates, such as a
chimpanzee, who carried one or more human genes
via transgenic technology, be defined as still a
chimp, a human, a subhuman, or something else? If
defined as human, would we have to give it rights
of citizenship? And if humans were to carry
non-human transgenic genes, would that alter our
definitions and treatment of them(Deductive Logic:
Kluger 1997)? Also, if the technology were to be
so that scientists could transfer human genes into
animals and vice-versa, that would heighten the
danger of developing zoonoses, diseases that are
transmitted from animals to humans.

It could
create a world wide catastrophe that no one would
be able to stop (Potential Risks). In conclusion,
the ethical and moral implications of cloning are
such that it would be wrong for the human race to
support or advocate it. The sheer loss of life in
both humans and non-humans is enough to prove that
cloning would be a foolish endeavor, whatever the

Research essay sample on Ethical Questions To Cloning