According to Representative Joe Pitts (R-Pa), "it is unethical to tinker with human life," he said in reference to human cloning. This was sparked by the recent news that scientists in Korea had managed to clone humans, forming embryonic blastocysts from which stem cells could be extracted.
Now I'm not saying I'm in favor of human cloning, but his comment raises numerous gray-area questions. After all, what consists of 'tinkering with human life'? What about other forms of medical research, such as human drug testing, or experimental surgical techniques? In attempting such high-risk procedures such as removing the extra head from that child in the Dominican Republic, it would be difficult to come up with a term other than 'tinkering,' given that the surgery had never been performed before on a patient like her, in addition to the fact the child didn't survive, which is no better an outcome than had the procedure never been attempted.
What about human testing of new drugs? How is that not tinkering? Oh, that's right, those people receive monetary compensation, so the almighty dollar makes everything OK. Besides I'm sure our representatives aren't complaining about the human tinkering that went on to result in their Viagra prescriptions!
Oddly, two of the scientists in Korea said they were the target of violence, even though they were engaging in research for disease treatment and not in reproductive cloning. It seems to me that if there were to be an acceptable use of cloning, it would be reproductive cloning, perhaps for couples who couldn't have kids. Such embryos wouldn't be destroyed, but allowed to mature, then nurtured and loved. Why is there such vehemence against that?
I think those who make these sweeping statements should evaluate their own ideas before embracing or decrying any new research.
1 month ago