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DareYokel

Human cloning

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DareYokel

I'm interested in what would be the positive and negative aspects of legalized human cloning, the long term consequences, as well as positive and negative aspects of human cloning being illegal as it is now, and under what circumstances should that change. Basically any logical argument on both sides of the issue is welcome.

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MIKON8ERISBACK

The positive aspects would be that would be able to make backups of very intelligent people. However, there are many other aspects of it which could be very dangerous, similar to a "grey goo" doomsday scenario in which the clones clone each other in an infinite chain reaction and then turn against us committing violent actions. The technology isn't even close to existing yet. The closest thing we have to it is a satellite orbiting earth with military grade digital storage devices on board containing the genetic information of Hollywood celebrities. In addition, we must also concern ourselves which genetic mutations that may occur as a result of the cloning process which would basically be errors caused by computer equipment involved in the process. That's just my two cents.

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Celestail

I have to disagree... look what happened to Dolly (the sheep) first clone test (i think) but there are more than enough Humans on Earth (No offence)

 

it is dangerous though

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Leftcoast

The concept of cloning humans is certainly interesting, I'm not against similar research; however, cloning a whole human seems to be rather inhumane. I would not want to clone a human and have it live a short tortured life. I would like to see continued research since it would be nice to be able to clone yourself a new organ or limb (just cloning the part needed, not a whole person) in the event you need one.

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El Dildo

aside from the fact that we're nowhere near the capability to clone humans, I just don't see why we would ever need to.

why would anyone need to be cloned?

 

what we need to clone is human organs.

people need to be able to exchange a failing kidney for a new kidney which is technically their own and not a transplant from organ donation which can have all sorts of complications. eventually people will need backups for all of the major bodily organs so that they can be replaced as they age and fail.

 

but cloning an entire person seems unnecessary.

I mean, they wouldn't even be the same person. people have this science-fiction idea about cloning that human clones would automatically be an exact copy of the original person and that's not true. they would look the same but they wouldn't be the same. cloning the physical body is not the same as cloning the MIND. the clone's brain would not have the original memories or personality of the person it was cloned from.

 

you basically have a twin. a dumb twin.

it would have to re-learn everything from scratch like a child and it's mind/personality would be completely different from the original person.

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sivispacem

AFAIK there are concerns about the potential for the shortening of Telomeres in cloned animals, leading to DNA degradation and reduced lifespan.

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Dingdongs
AFAIK there are concerns about the potential for the shortening of Telomeres in cloned animals, leading to DNA degradation and reduced lifespan.

Not surprising to me. Human cloning's only purpose is for wars IMO. Any clone you make will be, well, stupid. Throw em up on the front lines as dummies or something. To me the real concern is how revealing genetic information is and the possibility of a new class system based on good/bad genetics.

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Typhus

Isn't successful cloning the ticket to immortality? If you can replicate yourself, with your memories, quirks and abilities, surely your death becomes meaningless as another version of yourself will simply take over? I have never wanted children, but if I could have a complete copy of myself, I would gladly raise it.

My point is, any of you could have clones and simply never die because there would be a copy of you in your younger days ready to take over. However, I'm more inclined towards human augmentation and slowly becoming more artificial in order to escape death.

Both are clearly pipe dreams at this point in time, but I feel a fusion of humanity and machine will be far more preferable to cloning.

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sivispacem
Isn't successful cloning the ticket to immortality? If you can replicate yourself, with your memories, quirks and abilities, surely your death becomes meaningless as another version of yourself will simply take over?

Problem is that whilst you can replicate the genetic aspect, you cannot replicate anything else. Abilities and quirks are partially products of environment, and memories are entirely thus.

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H. León

I think it would be pointless IMHO.

I mean, why? What is the main benefit(s)?

Limb/organ clonation would be awesome btw.

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El Dildo
Isn't successful cloning the ticket to immortality? If you can replicate yourself, with your memories, quirks and abilities, surely your death becomes meaningless as another version of yourself will simply take over?

cloning the human body is completely different from cloning the mind.

 

I'm sure that sooner or later medical science will figure out how to clone humans. but this only applies to the physical shell; the body and it's organs, a blank slate.

transplanting memories and personality from one brain to another brain is a WHOLE new category of science. it's going to be much longer after simple body-cloning to figure out how to clone the mind.

 

and even if you do, it won't actually be immortality.

a clone of yourself - even with the same memories and personality - won't be you. when you die you will close your eyes and your conscious experience will shut down and come to an end. there may be a clone of yourself who is looking down at you as you die, but when your experience comes to an end it doesn't magically jump into the clone. the clone is a different person.

 

you see what I'm saying?

when you close your eyes and everything goes black, you won't suddenly open them again and be "inside" the clone. the clone gets to keep on living but it's not YOU. you're dead. that's not immortality.

 

immortality would be EVEN further in the future of medical science.

immortality would mean that we figured out how to clone the body, clone the mind, AND transfer CONSCIOUSNESS ITSELF from one brain to another. you would need to be able to close your eyes and "wake up" inside a new body which can live for another 100 years or so. that's immortality.

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Tchuck

Wouldn't cloning someone mean that you just create a baby that has the same genetic makeup as the original person? Except that also has some age issues like the ones that Dolly suffered from?

There is no feasible way to build a full grown adult. There are so many little variables and things that, even if surpassed and fixed, there is still the problem of the grown adult having the intelligence of a newborn. You could create clone farms and the like, like in Brave New World, but still.

 

As mentioned above, cloning human organs for replacement would be ideal. Made from your own cells, 0 chance of rejection and so forth. Or even better, with genetic manipulation you could clone a human organ from your own cells, then alter it to make it avoid some bad genes or problems that are in your genes. Right now, though, scientists are able to build simpler organs from scratch. Cloning them might not even be necessary.

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Dingdongs

 

immortality would mean that we figured out how to clone the body, clone the mind, AND transfer CONSCIOUSNESS ITSELF from one brain to another. you would need to be able to close your eyes and "wake up" inside a new body which can live for another 100 years or so. that's immortality.

 

Jeez... I wonder if that is even possible. I mean I'm sure we are hundreds of years from all of this stuff but, I don't even know of how that would be done scientifically. We can imagine all the other stuff, cloning a body and its memories I can see feasible way down the road, but how could you even go about transferring consciousness? I just don't think that will ever be possible.

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Mike Tequeli

 

AFAIK there are concerns about the potential for the shortening of Telomeres in cloned animals, leading to DNA degradation and reduced lifespan.

The reduced lifespan makes uprisings among your clone laborers less likely though.

 

I'm sort of out of my depth when I think of all the bioethicists or whatever who put serious thought into this kind of stuff. With that said I feel like a lot of the Bush era bans on ethically questionable science were actually pretty regressive and not helpful. Cloning seems trickier an issue but I feel like our ill feelings about it are specifically Western in nature. I don't think the East shares our ethical view of cloning, and they will likely be the ones to actually go ahead and achieve it, which will be amazing. I suppose I believe more in the scientific achievement than the actual practice of human cloning.

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Tyler

It's a subject that needs to be talked about more before we can actually work on advancing in cloning. Like said above the benefits of cloning organs and tissue for use in other bodies is an advancement I'd venture to say all of us would endorse. At the same time, the entire field is hazy and there are numerous complications from cloning that have become evident from the first few animals we've "successfully" done it to. Age limits are completely unintended and the decreased immune system/prone to cancer endeavor doesn't look promising.

 

Full human cloning is antithetical to what we are but if we use it selectively to strengthen ourselves/privatize it to make way for the baby factories then it could become an interesting practice. Of course, making it easier would lead to entire PMCs made up of cloned offspring that are optimized for short-term combat and long-term occupation with little to no other skillsets. I guess that's really the only ethical dilemma in human cloning for me but even that wouldn't last long once we got dem robots.

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Otter

Well, if we can ignore the science fiction - unfortunately, not that fun - we're left with the fact that the act of cloning, at this point, is entirely experimental.

 

The technology isn't decades away - it's possible now. You'll just end up with an unfortunate creature that will live a horrible life. This is where the ethics come into play.

 

Theoretically, you could create a human-chimpanzee hybrid, were you so inclined. It probably wouldn't take too much science, either, if you catch my drift. It comes down to this: what's the point?

 

Cloning isn't some crazy, far fetched idea. It's totally possible. But as diablo touched on, the holy grail is discovering a route to clone body parts or organs - this would be fantastic, wouldn't it? It could, very much, be that "path to immortality" that Typhus mentioned. But until we figure out how to grow certain things, we're left with the act of willfully creating a doomed intelligent life form. That's a horrific undertaking.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Finite

I'm fascinated by the idea of cloning, but the fact simply remains it's not really as beneficial to us as it once would've been. In a time of war perhaps or when mass growth of an economy is needed then perhaps it could be utilized but really what usages would cloning possible give us in this day and age - not to say that it wouldn't be incredible to have my own clone (it's been something that I've always wanted, a person that thinks and looks exactly as I do) but I doubt it'd be beneficial in the long run.

 

 

Isn't successful cloning the ticket to immortality? If you can replicate yourself, with your memories, quirks and abilities, surely your death becomes meaningless as another version of yourself will simply take over? I have never wanted children, but if I could have a complete copy of myself, I would gladly raise it.

My point is, any of you could have clones and simply never die because there would be a copy of you in your younger days ready to take over. However, I'm more inclined towards human augmentation and slowly becoming more artificial in order to escape death.

Both are clearly pipe dreams at this point in time, but I feel a fusion of humanity and machine will be far more preferable to cloning.

 

Now, that's an interesting question but I'm going answer your question with another "would it really be you ?" ... sure it would be a complete remake of you in every way - from memories to physical form and health but would it really be you. It may remember the stuff that you've done in your lifetime but it's never done that, the clone may end up getting confused and going crazy for all we know since if someone stuffed your brain with stuff that you'd never done or seen you'd panic a bit too.

 

I suppose it all comes down to ethics, it's something that stops us from doing what we really want to do in this life. Do I think having a fully robotic body would be awesome, not really but you seem to. What holds us back from doing these types of things is are wish to see things not only live freely but also remain who and what they are, it's why everyone acts weird around someone who's had a sex change. There's not anything wrong with the person, but there's definitely something wrong with the "atmosphere" around them - it's almost as if they emit something that's not natural and as such we panic. It's a basic evolutionary instinct I'm not saying there's anything wrong with people who do that to themselves but there's definitely something about stuff that changes who we are as people that sets off alarm bells in our heads.

 

 

Well, if we can ignore the science fiction - unfortunately, not that fun - we're left with the fact that the act of cloning, at this point, is entirely experimental.

 

The technology isn't decades away - it's possible now. You'll just end up with an unfortunate creature that will live a horrible life. This is where the ethics come into play.

 

Theoretically, you could create a human-chimpanzee hybrid, were you so inclined. It probably wouldn't take too much science, either, if you catch my drift. It comes down to this: what's the point?

 

Cloning isn't some crazy, far fetched idea. It's totally possible. But as diablo touched on, the holy grail is discovering a route to clone body parts or organs - this would be fantastic, wouldn't it? It could, very much, be that "path to immortality" that Typhus mentioned. But until we figure out how to grow certain things, we're left with the act of willfully creating a doomed intelligent life form. That's a horrific undertaking.

 

Indeed, but with such technology fast approaching do you think we'll actually choose to ignore this possibility ? the possibility for free organs ? a solution to world hunger perhaps ? no and no. The question we have to ask ourselves is are we moving to fast for our own good ???

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Otter

I don't subscribe to that idea - mainly because to me "moving forward" indicates bettering ourselves. Perhaps something that makes more sense to me is the idea that we're too confident in our advances, without safely observing the possible outcomes. Yeah, I know. Semantics.

 

Yet, fortune favors the bold, as they say. wink.gif

 

Anyhow, I think growing replacement organs is a fascinating concept. We've been able to grow headless organisms for a while now. Yet there are those - I find myself baffled by this - who find this to be morally reprehensible. That's probably the largest stumbling block, and I doubt it's going away any time soon.

Edited by Otter

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Tyler

It's the same thing that blocks any real discussions on many transhumanist concepts, Otter. If I bring up the idea of cloning organs or voluntary prosthetics to someone in a day-to-day then I'll get weird looks and be known as "that guy" for the most part. There are few exceptions where people are willing to humor the ideas of the near future, especially when it relates to something as precarious as robotics or cloning.

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El Dildo
If I bring up the idea of cloning organs or voluntary prosthetics to someone in a day-to-day then I'll get weird looks and be known as "that guy" for the most part.

then you're talking to the wrong people; likely close-minded, ignorant people.

 

anyone who even has a rudimentary understanding of how beneficial this would be to medical science would love to entertain the idea.

it's a fascinating reality that we are rapidly advancing towards.

 

we've already grown ears and noses and elbow joints (among other things) in the lab and those were not prosthetic but actual living tissue.

so it's only a matter of time before we figure out how to grow fully functional organs.

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Otter

Those "close-minded, ignorant people" are legion, however. Been reading into Transhumanism (thanks Tyler) and it's fascinating stuff. I do find the detractors to be expressing more abject fear than anything else, (perhaps this is too dismissive) but of the detractors there are many.

Edited by Otter

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El Dildo

of course there are many.

 

there were many people who thought human slavery was their right from god.

now they're pretty much all dead.

 

give it time.

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Otter

So your solution to opposition is apathy? tounge.gif Come on now. "Give it time" and I'll be dead. I want my immortal cyborg internet brain now.

 

The entire reason we have these discussions is to challenge mindsets. I'd love to know if anyone here is opposed to, say, growing a human without a head (ignoring the fact that it would have to be brought to term inside a lady... pesky limitation of modern science, we don't have artificial wombs yet) to use as an organ factory. Who sees this as reprehensible or morally wrong, and why?

 

 

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El Dildo

 

So your solution to opposition is apathy? tounge.gif Come on now. "Give it time" and I'll be dead.  I want my immortal cyborg internet brain now

not apathy.

realism.

 

you're never going to live long enough to be a cybernetic robot.

sorry. just the reality of our situation.

 

the best you can hope for is to freeze your brain when you die and maybe someday they'll know how to bring it back to "life" and put it inside a machine that you can control.

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Otter

Sorry, if it wasn't clear, I was trying to politely dismiss you so we could stay on topic. I know better to engage you in any sort of conversation and expect respectful discourse.

 

Would love to hear people's opinions on the ethics here! I think it's an interesting and important conversation.

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El Dildo
I was trying to politely dismiss you

well you failed miserably.

 

the reason I didn't address your ethical question is because you didn't even think about it before asking it. there's no ethical discussion to have.

we do not need to create a headless monster to host organs. we can already grow simple organs in a Petri dish. they don't require a host.

 

in the future you would be able to grow clones of your own organs in a "test tube" that survive until you are ready for the transplant.

there's no need to store them inside some kind of freakish mass of flesh straight out of a bad science fiction movie. it's just not logical.

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Otter

Exactly what I was talking about. Not only do you speak to me like some snotty know-it-all sophomore, but you just seemingly make sh*t up. Gotta love it.

 

You act as if this - documented, intelligent, collegiate and very public - opposition doesn't even exist. And then, what, counter that we can sidestep the entire thing because we can already grow "simple" organs in a petri dish?

 

Dude, just, no. Unless you're talking about a useless clump of cardiac muscle, no. We haven't done anything like that. However, we have grown a "freakish mass of flesh straight out of a bad science fiction movie." Not only just that, but the other way around, too - just the head! Which would understandably give pause for concern.

 

So instead of talking down to people like you're some guru on the subject, do a little research and extend us all a little courtesy, if you please.

Edited by Otter

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El Dildo

forgive me if I just ignore your little piss-ant whining and move on to the points.

 

 

You act as if this - documented, intelligent, collegiate and very public - opposition doesn't even exist.

incorrect.

 

I never said that this opposition doesn't exist.

I said it's not realistic. of course people oppose Frankenstein bags of flesh used to host organs. but that's not really a commonplace issue is it?

 

lemme know when 60 Minutes does an expose on the huge underground market of horrific flesh bags being used to trade human organs.

 

 

And then, what, counter that we can sidestep the entire thing because we can already grow "simple" organs in a petri dish?

yes, exactly.

 

are you telling me that you're not aware of the functional human tissues we've already grown in the lab?

ears, noses, heart valves, trachea/wind pipes, lung tissue, etc.

 

if not, then you telling me to get a clue is pretty ironic.

 

http://singularityhub.com/2011/03/15/growi...a-ted-audience/

 

http://www.army.mil/article/73085/Regenera...w_human_organs/

 

http://abcnews.go.com/Health/lab-grown-cus...64#.ULbxWYbiGdA

 

http://boston.cbslocal.com/2012/02/14/bost...w-human-organs/

Edited by El_Diablo

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Otter

With the distinct exception of Atala's bladder - a pretty big oversight on my part - I think you see the trend in those headlines. A lot of "Could be"s and "May be"s. Unless something cooler comes along, though, yeah, a lot of "will be"s.

 

You mock the detractors as ignorant earlier and then you use terms like "Frankenstein bags of flesh" - an interesting contradiction. It's that sort of mentality that leads to abject fear of the unknown, wouldn't you say?

 

I'm not going to lie though - growing and "printing" tissues cloned from your own body? That's incredibly cool.

 

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El Dildo

 

I think you see the trend in those headlines. A lot of "Could be"s and "May be"s.

we're talking about the future.

of course it's "could be's" and "may be's."

 

but it's "could be's" and "may be's" with very real current medical science behind it.

it's not a pipe dream or anything. it's more or less a matter of time.

 

 

You mock the detractors as ignorant earlier

well not exactly.

 

Tyler said that when he talks to certain people about organ cloning, they give him weird looks and label him as "that guy."

those people are ignorant.

 

it doesn't mean they're stupid or something.

it means they're ignorant; their comprehension of the subject is extremely limited and their outlook is likely being influenced by certain archaic, iron-age beliefs from an ancient book written in Hebrew...

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