The rule of science says “What you think impossible today will be possible tomorrow”. Unconventional discoveries, mind boggling advancements and a huge expansion in science and technology has been witnessed ever since humans developed scientific temper. These advancements have certainly made it possible for us to explore about the world and its phenomenas in varied fields. One such field is the field of cloning. About a few decades ago, who would have imagined that it is possible for humans to create life – something which has for long been credited to the almighty. But today, the process of cloning has opened the entry gates for exploration of human beings that was never possible before.
Though cloning attempts started around 1952, the first successful embryonic transfer took place in 1970. Thereafter a revolutionary breakthrough was achieved with the creation of the cloned sheep “Dolly” where the starter cells were taken from an adult ewe instead of the embryo. Recently, cloning of animals and human organs has been successfully carried out. However, it has opened a whole new world of controversies and complications. Human cloning is not a distant phenomenon now and farsighted people have already begun to analyze its pros and cons.
Human cloning has remained a debatable topic for years now – on one hand, there are scientists who wish to act like gods and create humans out of their own efforts while on the other hand many think that cloning can have serious negative repercussions. Time and again it has been condemned by world leaders, with US President Bill Clinton taking it to the farthest level with the Cloning Prohibition Act of 1997. If we analyze the medical processes and social impacts related to human cloning, then we many easily find why such a large section of humanity rejects it. Given below are top 10 reasons why cloning shall prove bad for the society at large.
10. Uncertain Results:
Though we have made remarkable progress in this field, but the cloning process of humans has not yet been successfully tested and perfected. The making of “Dolly” started with deaths of numerous embryos and new borns. One dolly came into being from 277 fused eggs, which itself indicates the grim success rate of the cloning process. If human cloning is carried out, it may well lead to uncontrolled results, abnormal development, genetic damage, malformation and diseases in the clone. Even if cloning is successful, the life of the clone will probably be a drastic one with a much shorter span. Since genes can be tricky, recessive genes may show up too late in a clone, and a whole line of people may get affected.
9. Serious impact on economy:
One of the very rational reasons for avoiding cloning is that it is a very expensive process. It requires technically sophisticated resources for which one may have to shell out a lot of money. Plus, as I mentioned, there are lot of risks involved in cloning. With the success rate presently being only around 1%, it is not economically viable to practice large scale cloning. It will only drain wealth out of an economy.
8. Over-population and pressure on natural resources:
If large-scale cloning is practiced, it will lead to massive population expanse. It provides for the added burden of clones over the existing population. And who does not know of the issues associated with overly populous nations? Obviously, the clones will compete with the rest of the human beings in terms of resources. This will put acute pressure on natural resources and nature may not be able to replenish them at a rate comparable to their fast consumption.
7. Lack of genetic diversity in the world:
The survival of humans on planet earth largely relies upon the genetic diversity within our species. Every individual is born with a different set of genes which are inherited from the parents. Cloning will mean bringing in identical genes, which will naturally weaken our power to adapt to different circumstances. This may put us in a threat of getting infected with a serious disease. Moreover, beauty of humanity lies in the differences we see in one another. Cloning shall eliminate this surprise factor from the entire human race. In fact, there shall be no further evolution of human race. The world may just become an ideal place where all the “perfect people” with genetically similar features shall thrive.
6. It will contradict the religious and spiritual beliefs of people:
All religious institutions hold up the belief that human cloning means mocking the role of God. The religious institutions, which have a great influence over peoples’ opinions, believe that cloning shall also degrade human dignity. Since childhood most of us have grown up worshipping god for his extraordinary powers to create, preserve and destroy. Cloning challenges the existence of God itself, and hence hits hard the religious and spiritual beliefs of people that they have been upholding since times immemorial.
5. Identity crisis:
If you have a clone of you existing somewhere in the world, or just next to you, it means your identity is threatened. Your clone may do things in your name and nobody would ever suspect it. Your value shall also degrade as it is a well conceived notion that value is intimately tied to uniqueness. Not just yours, the identity of the clone too shall be a problem. How would you relate the clone to you? A son/daughter or a brother/sister? Identity crisis is inevitable in such a situation.
4. Problem with social acceptance :
A big problem lies in the social acceptance of clones. As the strongest reason in favor of cloning is its ability to backup in case of organ failures, the world may see clones as mere organ carriers and not as fellow human beings. The clones may always be considered as second class people because they were only brought into the world with the purpose of serving the already existing people. The problem of social acceptance may not only be true for clones, but it may occur to a naturally born person too. There might emerge cases when the human being may not have the desired characteristics, and since creation of perfect people is possible, the original human being may be rejected socially.
3. Diminishing value of life and family:
Human cloning is bound to devastate parenting and family life, apart from creating unbalance in society. It will be ridiculous to see how cloning shall separate reproduction from love and human relationship. The value of life shall diminish because one shall virtually become immortal. Cloning will undermine the elements of loving, caring, nurturing a family and accepting every child as unique. Parents will only end up making efforts for getting cloned children who are intelligent and extraordinary.
2. It may build a new world of fraud and unethical practices:
Human cloning threatens to instigate a new world of fraud practices. Who knows there just might evolve a black market which gets involved in thefts and sale of clones. The status of clones shall reduce to that of a property that can be sold to anyone else. Moreover, clones could be used in crime or as weapons. This technology may also be used for domination and war by building up huge super armies from clones of elite soldiers. There may be powerful people who will time and again abuse this technology for their own purposes. The stories of Osama-bin-Laden clones have not ceased to amaze people, however false they may be.
1.Against the law of nature:
Cloning clearly means transgressing the nature as a new individual is born not out natural reproductive process, but through artificial procedures. Sex, which has conventionally been seen as nature’s instrument to reproduce, will weaken in terms of its importance, if cloning takes over. From the drastic impacts of human exploitation on environment that we see today, we can derive one sure thing – whenever man has tried to interfere with nature’s self-regulatory systems, he has involuntarily invited havoc. Similarly, large scale cloning too may have a drastic impact on our ecosystem. Since all of this is occurring unnaturally, mode of disposal might crop up as a serious problem.