While Condemning Reckless Raelians, Canadian Transhumanists Affirm Cloning as a Valid Reproductive Choice
Toronto Transhumanist Association believes human cloning will one day become a beneficial and positive procedure, but wish to distance themselves from unethical groups and scientists
(PRWEB) January 5, 2003
Toronto, Ontario, January 3, 2002 -- With the Raelians announcing the birth of a human clone, blanket condemnations are flooding in. Most of the criticisms, however, are misdirected, and fail to mention reproductive cloning's potential benefits and supporters.
Virtually every cloned animal to date has been born with some sort of defect or abnormality (assuming they make it in the first place, as the majority of prospective clones die before birth). Even when seemingly healthy clones are born they can develop problems with their kidneys, liver, heart, blood vessels, skin, musculature of the body wall and immune system. They are also likely to have limb and facial abnormalities. And it's been reported that some cloned mice have continued growing to gigantic proportions, and that some animals are born with their insides on the outside.
In their haste to produce the first human clone, the Raelians and their renegade Clonaid biologists exposed babies to these sorts of risks. Yes, critics should be directing their disgust at the Raelians and the maverick scientists who helped them clone a human before the procedure was safe. But they should be careful about saying that all scientists and ethicists are against reproductive cloning, or that the act itself is evil.
"The media is reporting that scientists and ethicists believe reproductive cloning is in principle bad," says Simon Smith, president of the Toronto Transhumanist Association. "This is not the case. Most scientists and ethicists are opposed to reproductive cloning at present, as the technology is imperfect and dangerous. Many, however, see no problem with cloning in principle. When it's perfected, it will be merely another option in the growing list of reproductive choices."
The Toronto Transhumanist Association is a supporter of reproductive cloning, but denounces all attempts to clone humans until the technology is perfected. Until then, it wishes to distance itself as much as possible from unethical people and groups who are putting human lives at risk.
ÂHuman cloning will someday be a good thing,Â says TTA vice-president George Dvorsky. ÂFor infertile couples who cannot make babies with sperm and eggs, cloning is a medical breakthrough that will provide them children of their own. Similarly, it will help gay and lesbian couples produce genetically related offspring. And for those individuals with inheritable genetic diseases, reproductive cloning will give them an increased chance of having a healthy child."
ÂTranshumanists believe that humans deserve the right to clone themselves should they choose, so long as the process isnÂt harmful to others," says Dvorsky. "It is hard to imagine parents of clones being any less loving and caring than parents of regular children. Clones are nothing more than delayed twins, and are just as human and as deserving of rights and respect as anyone.Â
About the Toronto Transhumanist Association
The Toronto Transhumanist Association (TTA) is a chapter of the World Transhumanist Association, a global organization founded in 1998 to support discussion, research and public awareness of Transhumanist thinking. There are currently more than 50 formed or forming chapters of the World Transhumanist Association around the world.
Transhumanism is concerned with ethically expanding technological opportunities for all people to live longer and healthier lives, to enhance their intellectual, physical and emotional capacities, and to enjoy a future of freedom and prosperity.
If youÂre interested in learning more, please visit our Website at http://toronto. transhumanism. com (http://toronto. transhumanism. com) or email george@betterhumans. com.