The Genetic Engineering Debate Essay

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In recent discussions of genetic engineering, a controversial issue has been whether genetic engineering is ethical or not. In “The Person, the Soul, and Genetic Engineering,” JC Polkinghorne discusses about the moral status of the very early embryo and therapeutic cloning. J. H. Brooke’s article “Commentary on: The Person, the Soul, and Genetic Engineering” comments and state opinions that counter Polkinghorne’s article. On the other hand John Harris’s ““Goodbye Dolly?” The Ethics of Human Cloning” examines “the possible uses and abuses of human cloning and draw out the principal ethical dimensions, both of what might be done and its meaning, and of public and official response” (353). While in C. Cameron and R. Williamson’s article, “In …show more content…
They concluded that a human embryo and a “dolly embryo” acquire respect differently. A “dolly” embryo is no different genetically when in the laboratory from the somatic cell from which it is derived from. A somatic cell is any cell of a plant or an animal other than a germ cell. A human embryo acquires respect when it meets the criteria that “its development status of the embryo, the embryo’s potential, and the value of the embryo to other people or to themselves” (Cameron and Williamson 218). When dealing with a “dolly embryo” it obtains dignity/respect “upon the successful act of implantation, because after implantation development takes place which, if uninterrupted, leads to the birth of a human being” (Cameron and Williamson 218). I agree with Cameron and Williamson that a human embryo and a “dolly” embryo differentiate when they acquire dignity/respect. A human embryo is formed during fertilization, while a “dolly” embryo doesn’t require fertilization to become an embryo. Fertilization is the action or process of fertilizing an egg, female animal, or plant, involving the fusion of male and female gametes to form a zygote. Since fertilization does not take place, it makes it hard to tell when life begins in a “dolly” embryo. J. H. Brooke argues in her article “Commentary on: The Person, the Soul, and Genetic Engineering” that dignity is ascribed to an embryo not given, or that someone has to give the embryo dignity for it

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