Most of us remember when,in 1997, Scottish scientists proclaimed they had successfully cloned a sheep and named her Dolly. The ethical repercussions were alarming and a heated international discuss began.
Long before this watershed event, scientists had been interested in cloning and successfully cloned various things. In most cases they cloned only the DNA of an organism, but not the organism itself. Before Dolly was born, scientists were able to successful clone embryos, but could not bring those embryos to term.
Inevitably, this field has extended beyond scientific research and stepped into a new arena: cloning for commercial purposes. Pet owners can pay approximately $150,000 to clone their favorite dog, to cite just one example. The south Florida couple who paid this amount were very excited, and when asked why they would choose to clone their pet, their reasoning was: “He was a human dog.”
This begs the question, are humans next? If nostalgia and sentimentality spurs pet owners to spend this kind of money on a deceased dog, why not a child who died “too soon?”
Are we ready?