Clones are not as unnatural as you might think! they occur naturally though asexual reproduction ie: when an organism reproduces without the need of gametes. Strawberry plants clone themselves all the time…
“People already regularly eat lots of clones, that is, cloned fruits and vegetables. This includes most wine grapes, and all seedless grapes. Granny Smith, Red Delicious, and gala apples are all clones, as are garlic and most blueberries”(Bailey, 367).
Years ago, cloning of mammals was successfully achieved in laboratory and we all know the story of Dolly the Sheep. This was done through Somatic Cell cloning where the donner cell used to make dolly was already aged. Dolly aged at the same rate as the sheep she was cleaned from due to the shortened telomeres of her donor.
Telomeres get shorter over time, thus it is inconvenient to clone an organism that is old, because the clones won’t live very long. A more practical method is embryonic cloning where the donner cell is derived from an embryo. The embryo is young and has beautifully long telomeres so the clone has a chance to live out a full life time.
What about eating clones?
Multiple sources show that there is nothing to worry about. A study done on cloned cattle that has been done shows that “No significant difference was detected between the composition of milk from the clones and the matched comparator cows” (Tian, X. Cindy, et al, 2005) including no difference in antibody levels between the clones and regular cows. “Edible products from normal, healthy clones or their progeny do not appear to pore increased food consumption risk relative to comparable products from conventional animals” (Bailey, 367).
And just to drive it home “The draft risk assessment builds on findings of the NAS and indicates that food products derived from animal clones and their offspring are likely to be as safe to eat as food from their non-clone counter parts, based on all evidence available. These scientific findings also showed that healthy adult clones are virtually indistinguishable from their conventional counterparts” (FDA Consumer, 2004)
What about Therapeutic cloning?If products from cloned animals appear to be no different from regular animal products… why not clone for medical purposes? Therapeutic cloning provides a possible answer for all the people waiting for a donor to donate organs or all the people with diseases such as diabetes, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s that until recently appeared to have no possible cure.
“The fear that science moves too rapidly to keep in pace with societal and moral thinking is one notion that continually erupts in the literature, although one could argue that societal and moral concern is also too slow to adapt to the technological advancements of science. There is also a justifiable fear of reproductive cloning when there is an absence of legislation” (Hall).
Did you know?
“cloning is protected by ‘procreative liberty,’ because it enables a couple to have a child who is biologically related to each would-be parent, as do other forms of reproduction” (Robertson, 1998) That’s right!!! You are allowed to have a clone baby!!!
Are we stealing God’s throne?
What about the value of human life? Imagine young children going to school and having class mates that are clones, how are these children going to value human lives if it becomes a common idea to them that people can be replicated and that it is possible to not be one of a kind but to have multiple people genetically identical to you.
-Bailey, Ronold. “Eating Tasty Clones: Is Cloned Steak Good For You?” Word and world. (2007): 366-368. Print. -Bainbridge, William S. “Religious Opposition to Cloning” Evolution and Technology .Vol. 13. Web. October 2003. -Cynthia. "The Ethics Of Human Reproductive Cloning: When World Views Collide." Accountability In Research: Policies & Quality Assurance 11.3/4 (2004): 183-199. Business Source Complete. Web. 30 Oct. 2014. -Hall, Vanessa. “Using Therapeutic Cloning to Fight Human Disease: A Conundrum or Reality?” Stem Cells.24: 1628–1637.web.2006 -Lynch. Robert (1996) Multiplicity Plot Summary 1990-2014 IMDb.com, Inc. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0117108/plotsummary -Of Food Animal Clones." FDA Consumer 38.1 (2004): 6. Business Source Complete. Web. 30 Oct. 2014. -"Send In The Clones." Canadian Business 76.5 (2003): 88. Business Source Complete. Web. 30 Oct. 2014. -Tian, X. Cindy, et al. "Meat and Milk Compositions of Bovine Clones."Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States ofAmerica 2005: 6261. JSTOR Journals. Web. 3 Nov. 2014.