Did you ever imagine having a child that is the exact replica of you? Did you ever imagine of having the cure for heart disease or cancer? Well, these fantasies are not far from reach. The way we could reach these fantasies is through a process called cloning. Cloning is the replication of an exact genetic copy of an organism by use of a somatic tissue (or cell) from the donor organism. Cloning can be used in humans, human organs, or even animals. There are many advantages and disadvantages of cloning.
There are many benefits of cloning. A benefit of cloning is shown through the future of the medical field. Heart disease is the number one killer in the United States. Scientists predict that in the near future they will be able to clone healthy heart cells and inject them into damaged areas. Technology like this is obviously in great need but is harder and harder with the current bans on cloning. Yet another discovery that scientists and doctors are anticipating is the cloning of cells and tissues. If doctors can take healthy cells and tissue from a patient’s body and use them to make organs, the chance that the body would reject the organ is drastically reduced, if not eliminated. This would undoubtedly increase the survival rate of patients undergoing organ transplants. With continued research in cloning procedures, scientists predict they will be able to find a cure for cancer by learning how to switch cells on and off. An increasing amount of people are diagnosed with cancer each year, and a cure for this dreadful disease is long past due. But, cures for these diseases are nearly impossible with the government’s ban and the absence of federal funding. Through these kinds of reasons, cloning shows an infinite amount of advantages in the medical field. Another benefit of cloning is so that infertile couples could have children. Despite getting a fair amount of publicity in the news, current treatments for infertility are not very successful. Couples go through physically and emotionally painful procedures for a small chance of having children. Many couples run out of time and money without successfully having children. Human cloning could make it possible for many more infertile couples to have children than ever before possible. Another benefit of cloning is cloning human organs or body parts. If a person has a dysfunctional liver or heart then they could get it cloned and get a brand new one. These are some of the benefits of cloning.
Even though there are a lot of benefits to cloning, there are also a lot of disadvantages of cloning. One disadvantage is whether if cloning is ethical. Cloning will bring up a great controversy on whether if cloning is the “right” thing to do or not. This controversy is currently going on right now and will be even a greater controversy if the government allows cloning. Many people think that nature should just take its course. Other people think that cloning will be a very good thing to society. Another disadvantage of cloning is that it has not been perfected yet. The cloning of the sheep Dolly had 276 failures before successfully cloning a sheep. With these kinds of figures we should not even go near trying to demonstrate cloning on humans. One more disadvantage of cloning can be studied through the works of Aldous Huxley in his book the “Brave New World.” Huxley illustrates the future with people having “total loss of individuality, creativity, and freedom. (pg.491)” This is because if humans are then there would be a lot of the same people in the future. An example would be if a person is cloned and was cloned 3 times. This would cause trouble because none of these clones will have anything unique about themselves.
The future of cloning is very questionable. As of now cloning is banned in the United States. The government is not supporting the experimenting of cloning through any means. This does not mean that cloning will be banned forever in the United States. Someone is going to do it, legal or illegal. But it seems only logical to do it under strict government supervision with the best trained professionals rather than letting some maniacal scientist do it and let his clone run lose. Human cloning should not be prohibited simply because it does not insure immediate benefits, but it should be experimented with for potential future use.
In conclusion, cloning is a study in biotechnology that has unlimited possibilities. There are benefits such as cures for diseases and disadvantages such as not perfecting the technique of cloning. Despite this fact, cloning will be an ongoing process and will be tested. Hopefully cloning will not be a downfall to human history but rather a step closer to a better society.