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Hi I need help with an essay, not revising it, but I am just curious what grade I would recieve and if I am staying on top based on a grade of 0 to 200. The essay is kind of long, but your help will be appreciated. Please leave general comments and ideas and most important a score. Thank you for your time.
Some scholars have used Frankenstein as a central piece in their argument against the development of cloning technology. Others argue that the problem was not with Victor Frankenstein's scientific methods, but with his responses to his creation; we should develop cloning technology, but use it wisely. Research of the cloning issure, and present both. First, explain the various positions on cloning. Then, argue whetere Mary Shelly would either be for or against cloning, based on the novel. Support your argument with passages from the novel and current debating points about cloning.
What is cloning? Cloning is a form of asexual reproduction. Naturally there are certain life forms on earth which reproduce asexually. Plants, more commonly, “clone” themselves for functions such as food storage. While animals, such as worms use spontaneous fragmentation to break up into several pieces and create several clones of the original to preserve their species. But once cloning turns its duplicitous eye towards mammal cloning, the topics discussed get sketchy. There are extremists to both sides, one preserving science, the other fighting for religion, and each side refuses to see the others pros and cons. There are arguments for both the good and bad in cloning.
One of the most common arguments against cloning is that it would allow mankind to alter the clone to contain certain chosen characteristics, such as a greater potential intelligence, or a certain physical attribute. (Reproductive Cloning) In a sport such as bodybuilding, where genetics plays a big role on the potential a body could be sculpted, the barriers between the average man and the bodybuilder could be broken. Why is this bad? If scientists could remove the impurities of genetics to create everyone perfect, disease as we know it would not exist. Imagine a world with no down syndrome, no sickle-cell disease, and no color blindness with the average life expectancy of 120. That doesn’t sound too bad, or does it? Imagine everyone has the same IQ, the same interests and dislikes, the same capability. No one can be an individual; everyone is the same and has similar thoughts. Life would be dull and boring. Granted, there would be fewer issues and conflicts, but life would lose its meaning. If everyone can do the same things, dependency on the uniqueness of individuals would be eliminated. The pains in life would not exist. Without the pains nobody would really be able to find happiness. How can one laugh, if one never cried?
Another argument against cloning is that the cloned children would be raised ‘in the shadow’ of their nuclear donor, in a way that would strongly tend to constrain individual psychological and social development. (Reproductive Cloning) The clone would not exist if it were not cloned; it has no purpose in this life because its purpose is fulfilled by the original donor. But once the clone is born, it would prefer to exist than not exist. So the problem is, if you have a double, which does the same things as you, but you already did them, what is the purpose of the double? The clone loses purpose and becomes an empty shell, rediscovering what the original had once discovered. Life would be a repeat for the clones, each thinking they would be original, yet they are actually just coping what the original had done. They would get psychological and social problems, as people would view them as insane.
One of the biggest controversies is the safety of cloning. At least 95% of mammal clones, result in miscarriages, death at birth, or other various life threatening complications. Some scientists believe clones could never be fully healthy. (Human Genome Project Institution) For a clone to be cloned, the donor animal must give 100 nuclei to produce a clone. 100 nuclei is equivalent to 100 cells, 100 cells of a multi-cellular organism is miniscule considering there are trillions upon trillions of cells. If one of these cells have a genetic disorder the 1 out of 100 turns into 10 billion of the 1 trillion, which then grows exponential. This shows how risky cloning is. So in addition to low success rates, cloned animals have weak immune function and higher rate of infection, tumor growth and other disorders. “Japanese studies have shown that cloned mice live in poor health and die early. About a third of cloned calves born alive have died young, and many of them were abnormally large. Clones have known to die mysteriously. For example, Australia’s first cloned sheep appeared health and energetic on the day she died, and results from her autopsy failed to determine a cause of death. Researchers at the Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research in Cambridge, Massachusetts, reported that the genomes of cloned mice are compromised. In analyzing more than 10,000 liver and placenta cells of cloned mice, they discovered that 4% of genes function abnormally.”(Human Genome Project Institution)
Finally, another big argument against cloning is its uses. If cloning was to be perfected, and each clone would be perfect, what would we use the clone for? What if it got into the wrong hands? Lets say someone like Hitler perfected it, and was able to produce his “Aryan” warriors. The Allies during World War II would probably not have won the war. In fact the war would have probably never ended. Both sides cloning the perfect warriors, equally strong on the battlefield, and with one side having a leader as vicious and power hungry as Hitler, the world be a battlefield. Arguably the world would come to a stalemate eventually due to a lack of resources, but what would we do with all the corpses? What will happen to those future generations who are living in a war torn country, with no resources?
Those who are in favor of cloning argue that cloning can provide genetically related children for people who are sterile and can’t reproduce. Cloning can create an exact replica of an individual, but isn’t limited to. During cloning genetic modification is possible, and thus scientists are capable of recombining two donors to produce a mixed individual. America is a country built on the individual. The idea of that every individual has a right, and is important to society. While the numbers of people who have fertility issues are miniscule, America should still aide and represent what these people want.
Another group that would be represented is the gay and lesbian community. “Reproductive cloning would allow lesbians to have a child without having to use donor sperm, and gay men to have a child that does not have genes derived from an egg donor (though, of course, a surrogate would have to carry the pregnancy).”(Reproductive Cloning) The lesbian and gay community is often underrepresented, and denied rights due to their sexual orientation. This would spark a greater acceptance in gay and lesbian communities, giving them more representation as well as allow them to create children. If a child makes these couples happy, who are we to deny them children? Cloning can provide them the happiness they desire.
Cloning would also allow parents of a child, or a spouse to a widow/er to recreate an identical spouse/child to compensate them. People die every day from various causes such as car accidents, illnesses, and cancer. Obviously the psychological damage will stand from losing an individual the first time, but it will be easier on the person knowing that it’s still possible to recreate the same exact person. It is possible for families to split up if the one person who holds the family together dies. Parents, whose children died to illness or genetic disorder, may believe they are incapable of producing a “proper” offspring and may give up. Genetic engineering will make it possible to replace that child, clear of illnesses and problems. The world will be a happier place.
If Mary Shelly were alive now, what would be her position on cloning? Her opinion is shown in Frankenstein. In Frankenstein, a man Victor Frankenstein, a scientist with good intent, creates a creature through parts of various cadavers. This idea is similar to genetic engineering, where you can pick and choose parts. Victor Frankenstein does not pay attention to the combinations of those parts, but to each part as its own. “His limbs were in proportion, and I had selected his features beautifully. Beautiful! Great god!...his hair was a lustrous black, and flowing; his teeth of a pearly whiteness.”(Shelly 49) While each part may be beautiful and perfect, together the person designing the clone will not necessarily form the perfect image. Victor Frankenstein then observes, “How can I describe my emotions at this catastrophe… these luxuriances only formed a more horrid contrast with his watery eyes, that seemed almost the same colour as the dun-white sockets in which they were set, his shriveled complexion and straight black lips.” (Shelly 49) Victor Frankenstein from that point on puts a burden on himself to destroy his creation. Mary Shelly may argue that if genetically engineer the clone and pick blond hair, hazel eyes and a small nose, once the image is created, it may not be as perfect as you first thought. But, then would you have the ability to destroy the clone afterward? While Mary Shelly’s creature was not human, and was okay to destroy, is a human’s life equal to that of “monster”? Most would say no, and could argue a monster is less than to a human because it terrorizes. Mary Shelly shows how a human’s arrogance and conceitedness can prove him to be worse than a monster.
Cloning may not produce the same monster in Frankenstein, but the idea of the very creation of life is addressed in the novel. “All the world’s religions and spiritual disciplines ascribe to divine forces – we are sure to open up a Pandora’s box of psychological, ethical legal and spiritual complications.”(Harris) Frankenstein is called “The Modern Prometheus” for several reasons. In the story of Prometheus, the human’s desire to know leads to the demise of the human race. In Frankenstein it is the desire to know everything about science and the creation of living matter that leads to Victor Frankenstein’s demise. Victor Frankenstein proves it when he describes his feelings, “No one can conceive the variety of feelings which bore me onwards, like a hurricane, in the first enthusiasm of success. Life and death appeared to me ideal bounds, which I should first break through, and pour a torrent of light into our dark world.” (Shelly 46) In the end the torrent of light, becomes a torrent of darkness because of his one eyed view. Like Prometheus, who stole fire from the gods and was punished for doing so, Victor Frankenstein is haunted by his creature throughout the novel. The creature slays those closest to Frankenstein. Mary Shelly makes it clear, that those who toy with nature shall pay and not only with their own lives, but with the ones they are around.
Cloning… good or bad? It appears in Mary Shelly’s perspective it is bad, while others argue that it is good. There is a big controversy over cloning. Pro-life and religious groups often argue against, while scientists and logical thinkers argue for. There are both pros and cons to each side, and every argument is rebuttable. There will always be someone for and someone against an idea, especially one as debatable as cloning As the human race progresses through time, science advances, and so do the ideas behind ethics.
Sorry Had to split it, it was too long.
Note that I am only a High School Student, but feel free to give a grade based on college or high school level. MLA citations not attached.