the other side sucks
rickshaus mission
Things to ponder ... or not
Graphic art and not so artful graphics
We have to pay for this somehow
rickshaus website copyright 2001-5 All Rights Reserved
Raves, rants, compliments, criticism, we want to know and if it's constructive we will even take it seriously





Human Cloning!?!

Cloning is in the news again lately. Human embryos have been created for “research purposes.” The gathering of “custom stem cells” is the stated purpose.
Like it or not, cloning is out of the bag or out of the box, if you prefer the pandora analogy. History shows that the existence of the technology guarantees that every possible use for it will be attempted. If you have any doubts about this, think about gunpowder, nuclear energy and chemical/biological/genetic engineering.
Cloning poses many more questions and dilemmas than any of these examples. There are, of course, the religious and moral arguments. Is it good for men to play the role of creator of humans? Is cloning anything more than scientifically justified incest? Does a human exist at conception or not until human characteristics take physical shape? Can anyone really answer these questions? Instead of trying to answer them, this article will combine a meager knowledge of history, more experience with human nature than desired and an attempt to combine these with human cloning to paint a possible picture of the future.
We will begin with history’s lesson that it will be done if it can be done. Human clones will be produced. The present trend is that the first ones will be used to produce organs and other body repair parts for the people whose DNA was their seed. Later or at the same time, childless single people will find scientists to make copies of themselves, American or not. The scientists involved will dismiss the mutations and disfigurements as necessary and harmless. Eventually people will choose sides over the issue which will match the intensity of the abortion war.
This kind of conflict will increase the drive of the people who believe in and/or profit from cloning. Eventually, wether it is years, decades or longer or shorter, cloned servants will be offered for sale, possibly “intelligence adjusted” for servitude or a particular job or function. The only question is wether cloned armies will come before or after.
One of the many social consequences of mass produced humans will be a new class of prejudice. The possibility of the people producing them viewing them as children is rather low. They will more likely be viewed as akin to farm animals. Of course, they will really be slaves.
This will set the stage for the next societal conflict on the issue. Do industrially produced clones have human rights? Are they entitled to legal protection? Will human clones be banned from certain places and countries on moral and/or religious grounds? Will killing a clone be considered murder? Do clones have souls? As obvious as some of these seem, there WILL be arguments about it. Some of the most anti clone sentiments will come from religious fundamentalists who will claim that clones are too unnatural to have souls, rights or anything else.
I’m feeling nauseous writing this and I haven’t even covered human genetic engineering. I don’t think that mankind is responsible enough for this to have a happy ending. I think that cloning is already started and will continue. I also think that the majority of clones will have miserable, sad, unhappy lives. I’m not going to try to answer the moral questions, but I will say that each person needs to decide what they think before it is too late. The only action that can be taken is for each individual to decide on what action, attitude and other position they will take and live their lives that way.