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Should Human Cloning be Banned?

"The cloning of ‘Dolly’ the sheep in 1997 by Ian Wilmut and his colleagues at the Roslin Institute in Edinburgh generated a spontaneous worldwide reaction. Dr. Richard Seed, an American geneticist, claimed he would be able to clone human beings within a year. A Korean doctor was reported to have created, and killed, the first human clone,[1] but was subsequently found to have fabricated his results.[2] President Clinton ordered research into the ethics of human cloning, which subsequently became the Shapiro Report.[3] The United States has imposed a moratorium on human cloning and a ban on federal funding of cloning research[4] that will be reviewed every five years. One bill to make human cloning lawful and another demanding its prohibition were both rejected by Congress in 1999. In Britain human therapeutic cloning is legal but requires licenses,[5] reproductive cloning is however illegal. Germany, Switzerland and several American states have passed laws expressly forbidding human cloning, whereas Canada and Ireland have no relevant legislation at present. The opposition of international organisations towards human cloning seems clear. The European Parliament, the Council of Europe, UNESCO and the WHO have all passed resolutions asserting that human cloning is both morally and legally wrong. There is a clear distinction between ‘reproductive cloning’ and ‘therapeutic cloning’. Reproductive cloning relates to the use of the technology with the intention to produce a foetus identical to its parent. The technique used to produce Dolly is known as ‘nuclear transfer’, whereby the nucleus from a somatic cell was fused with an unfertilised egg from which the nucleus had been removed. This method of procreation is ‘asexual’, as it does not require one person of each sex in order to produce a child. A single mother or a lesbian couple, for example, could produce a child genetically related to them both, without the necessity for a male gamete.

[1] Hwang, Woo Suk et al., ‘Evidence of a Pluripotent Human Embryonic Stem Cell Line Derived from a Cloned Blastocyst’, Science, Vol. 303, No. 5664, pp.1669-1674, http://www.sciencemag.org/content/303/5664/1669

[2] ‘New blow to S Korea clone work’, BBC News, 29 December 2005, http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/asia-pacific/4566154.stm

[3] Shapiro, Harold T. et al., ‘Cloning Human Beings: Report and Recommendations of the National Bioethics Advisory Commission’, National Bioethics Advisory Commission, June 1997, http://bioethics.georgetown.edu/nbac/pubs/cloning1/cloning.pdf

[4] Ms Degette et al., ‘Stem Cell Research Advancement Act of 2009’, 111th CONGRESS, H.R. 4808, 10 March 2010, http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/z?c111:H.R.4808:

[5] Masons, Pinsent, ‘Human cloning licensed in UK’, Out-Law.com, 12 August 2004, http://www.out-law.com/page-4796"


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No.

Human cloning is useful.

It just depends who's using it and for what purpose.

Side: No