While people are in constant pursuit of ways to improve and advance the quality of human life, some activities in the field of genetics face scrutiny from many advocacy groups because they are seen as violating fundamental environmental and ethical principles. Human cloning is one area of genetic engineering that has ignited intense debates. Below are some environmental and ethical arguments against human cloning.
Human cloning violates the precautionary principle
A foundation of environmentalism, the precautionary principle requires that people must consider the consequences of their actions before they carry them out. The genetic engineering field is infamous for some of the unintended and unforeseen effects of genetic modification, such as the Bt corn’s harmful effects on the Monarch butterfly. Environmentalists and ethicists also fear that the lack of regulation in genetic engineering opens the door to human cloning.
Human cloning does not respect nature
While environmentalists hold on to an ethic of respect for the natural world and endeavor to exhibit the interdependence of humans and nature, human cloning proponents embrace the virtues of "re-making Eden" or "enhancing" what the natural world has provided us. If we allow human cloning, then all other species can be genetically modified. This is clearly going against the course of nature.
Human cloning does not ensure diversity and ecosystem survival
Contrary to popular beliefs, human cloning does not ensure diversity and ecosystem survival. It represents a major shift in human’s relationship with nature. Cloning is a break from the natural process of evolution, which is known to strengthen species and improves their survival instincts through diversity.
Human cloning deepens an alienation that cultivates destructive behavior toward our ecosystem. For example, why protect the environment when scientists could perpetuate cloned trophy specimens in zoos?
Human cloning is a cruel and unsafe experiment
Did you know that Dolly, the world’s first cloned sheep, was discarded about 200 times before one even survived? Did you know that more than 98% of clones are either malformed, stillborn, or die immediately after birth? Did you know that, although they appear normal, most clones have congenital defects such as premature aging?
Many cloned animals also suffer from large baby syndrome. In this condition, the fetus grows double its normal size. This syndrome sometimes results in the death of the mother. Cloning is a cruel and unsafe experiment, and any attempt at human cloning would constitute an unethical experimentation upon the unborn child.