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Should the United States Continue to Allow Cloning

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/12/2014 Category: Health
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,149 times Debate No: 45750
Debate Rounds (5)
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Votes (1)




We are currently in an age in which our use of technology is being expanded beyond the human imagination of even a few years ago. By definition, cloning is the process of producing similar populations of genetically identical individuals. Since the birth of Dolly, the cloned sheep, there has been public concern regarding advancing biotechnology by the suspicion that science is at the mercy of the technological imperative. At any angle in which this issue is attacked with, there is always going to be a group that can defend against it. However, there is a certain point in which we should allow technology to dictate so far. I will begin this debate by arguing that cloning has led to unnecessary suffering of the cloned thing. Best of luck to my opponent.


Before starting, I would like to thank my opponent for presenting this resolution in which will be debated upon. I wish the best of luck to him, and I hope that the two of us (along with those who will comment) will enjoy this debate.

I stand in firm affirmation of the topic of debate: Should the United States Continue to Allow Cloning? For clarification of the round, I would like to present a few definitions:

1.) Should: Used in auxiliary function to express obligation, propriety, or expediency. (Merriam-Webster Dictionary)
2.) Allow: To regard or treat (something) as acceptable. (Merriam-Webster Dictionary)
3.) Cloning: To make an exact copy of (a person, animal, or plant). (Merriam-Webster Dictionary)

I would now like to present one observation for this round:
Observation: The topic looks specifically to the United States thus limiting the places in which we are able to acquire the evidence from for this is an issue looking towards the United States specifically.

To support my claim, I would like to present one main contention.

Contention 1.) Cloning Animal Models.
The ultimate purpose of cloning is to make a copy of an organism. An example of a type of organism that can be cloned are animal models. First off, let's start by identifying what an animal model is. An animal model is: An animal sufficiently like humans in its anatomy, physiology, or response to a pathogen to be used in medical research in order to obtain results that can be extrapolated to human medicine. (Merriam-Webster Dictionary)
Some of the most common (if not the most common) type of animal model is that of mice. If we are able to clone mice effectively, then we could potentially figure out how to fix some of the genetics-related issues that we as humans have. According to the University of Utah's Health Sciences, "Much of what researchers learn about human disease comes from studying animal models such as mice. Often, animal models are genetically engineered to carry disease-causing mutations in their genes. Creating these transgenic animals is a time-intensive process that requires trial-and-error and several generations of breeding. Cloning could help reduce the time needed to make a transgenic animal model, and the result would be a population of genetically identical animals for study." However, the issue is that of effective cloning of mice (in this case). This issue is not too large as shown from a research done from Japan.
According to an article entitled "Mouse Cloning Using a Drop of Peripheral Blood" which was published the US journal "Biology of Reproduction" in June 26th 2013, it states that, "Following SCNT using randomly selected leukocyte nuclei, cloned offspring were born at a 2.8% birth rate. Fluorescence-activated cell sorting revealed that granulocytes/monocytes and lymphocytes could be roughly distinguished by their sizes, the former being significantly larger. We then cloned putative granulocytes/monocytes and lymphocytes separately, and obtained 2.1% and 1.7% birth rates, respectively (P > 0.05). Because the use of lymphocyte nuclei inevitably results in the birth of offspring with DNA rearrangements, we applied granulocyte/monocyte cloning to two genetically modified strains and two recombinant inbred strains."
In basic terms, the method used for cloning was similar (if not identical) to the method used on Dolly the sheep.
True that this evidence shows that percentage of success is low, however the results of quantity and quality are a different story. Later on, Dr. Wakayama of the Riken Centre for Developmental Biology, Kobe, Japan led a research with other Japanese researchers were able to successfully clone 581 mice in 25 rounds of cloning that were all fertile, gave birth to healthy pups and lived for about two years, similar to mice conceived in the normal way. According to the researchers, "Our results show there were no accumulations of epigenetic or genetic abnormalities in the mice, even after repeated cloning." However, this was not all for they also released the fact that they added a naturally occurring chemical called trichostatin. Doing this allowed for the cloning efficiency to increase sixfold with no reduction to the actual success rate. All of this was according to the information released in the journal "Cell Stem Cell." Eventually, the medical technology will improve and will improve at extremely fast rates (faster than now) gradually allowing us to increase that efficiency level even more. If we are able to do so, then we could quickly find ways to eliminate the genetic issues or diseases that we as humans have.

Thus for the aforementioned reason, I affirm.
Debate Round No. 1


I would like to start by apologizing for replying so late. Now that I have more time on my hands I can focus more attention on this debate.

I would first like to ask a question to my opponent: You said that "In basic terms, the method used for cloning was similar (if not identical) to the method used on Dolly the sheep". Given this is true, then why was Dolly's death so premature, and why did similar problems not occur in the rats tested on?

My opponent points out a scenario in which 582 mice was cloned and healthy. However, that was only one of the few times in which cloning was actually successful. According to naturalnews, "only 10 percent of the cloned animals survived through the research trials", although somewhat unrelated, it should be pointed out that the company admitted that the animals had underwent "unnecessary suffering" in the process. More times than not, cloning leads to some sort of genetic mutation and eventually death or severe impairment in the clone.

In this round I would also like to bring up the issue of ethics.

The first indication that our cloning methods are unjust is that they cause unnecessary pain to the clones, of which some could be humans. Cloning techniques are, in most cases, highly inaccurate and can cause a variety of genetic, psychological, and physical disorders in the living thing created. Examples of this is Dolly the sheep, who died of a weakened immune system, and a water buffalo cloned in India in 2009 that died because of lung defects. These animals should not have to suffer consequences that did not need to be presented upon them, thus why I think cloning is unethical.


Before moving on for this round, there are two things I wish to first say. 1.) I apologize for this late response. 2.) I would first like to answer my opponent's question/refutation before looking over his argument(s).

In regards to my opponent's question, I have two answers for this. If we go back to when Dolly the sheep was born, we see that she was successfully born by 1996 and lived to 2003. Technology back then was much less developed in comparison of that of when the project in regards to the mice occurred. It had much greater limits on success rates of cloning and cloning of healthy organisms. Clearly, we can see that that has changed a great amount since then. However, if you do not accept this then I will bring in one more answer. Recall how I pointed out Dolly's method of cloning was similar (if not the same) to that of the mice. I never said that where they started was the same. Dolly was born through an adult cell, the mice were born through the use of peripheral blood which had a different cell composition type (blood cell) in comparison to the type of cell used for Dolly (adult somatic cell extracted from udder). Despite the process being similar according to the Japanese researchers, the two have different sources. In regards to his comment afterwards about the company stating how the animals had underwent "unnecessary suffering", I have one thing to state. My opponent has no source or legitimate evidence card to show that the company which did this cloning project actually stated this, we have to assume that there wasn't "unnecessary pain." Drawing a small amount of blood is not that much of a painful process and was required to gain the peripheral blood of the mice thus making it a necessary and small amount of pain. Do not let him bring this up again for it is not allowed to bring up new evidence outside of that of your own case. In regards to his evidence from natural news. I have two things to state. 1.) Since it is Natural News, can we not assume that like BBC, NBC, CBS, etc. that Natural News will also be of some form of faulty? Also, 10% is a great number in comparison to the technology back at the time of Dolly so if technology improves even more, we can see an even higher number than 10% for a survival rate if what you say is true. 2.) What does this 10% statistic relate to? Unless you establish a clear link to the case study I bring up, this data has nothing to do with this debate. Thus, your refutations to my case falls.

Now, I would like to go over my opponent's arguments on unnecessary pain and ethics.
His first argument is an extremely short one. The following was his whole argument:
"I will begin this debate by arguing that cloning has led to unnecessary suffering of the cloned thing."
Unless he was foreshadowing to the ethics argument that he had brought up, this doesn't make any sense. Even if he were to foreshadow his ethics argument, he should have clearly stated that he would bring this up in the next round. Because he didn't we can only assume that this is a warrant less argument with no logic to back it up thus this argument falls. Do not let my opponent bring this argument back up again. However, if you still do not buy this we can look to the argument he would have foreshadowed to.
This whole contention is basically saying one thing: Unnecessary pain is unjust. Here are the problems with this argument: 1.) He does not state what is the actual "unnecessary pain" and why it is "unnecessary" for this animal to feel. Obviously, if we want to be able to clone, we have to extract something like a somatic cell or in my case, peripheral blood. The extraction of this is not unnecessary pain because it is what is necessary for the process of cloning. 2.) My opponent may ask, then why not just stop cloning so the pain of extraction should not be felt? In response to this question in which I will link to my opponent's argument, I would like to respond by bringing up my own argument. Animal models are a safe way to avoid genetic/pathogenic research on humans. If we want more animal models to work with, then we will need to clone. Trying to find them in the wild could potentially make the species extinct instead of having to work with one specimen to make hundreds (or more). Also, realize that technology (despite developing at such a fast rate) needs to take its time to evolve to a level where we can do cloning successfully. This is and was true for most (if not all) technology related projects in science. Trial and error was what made these projects successful and this will be true for cloning as well. Thus, Dolly and the water buffalo argument is negated. In actuality, we see that mice are the better cloning specimen due to how easy, small, and fast they can get cloned with the enhanced effiency (which again, will improve).
My opponent also brings up how there is always a group of results that have genetic diseases and such. In response to this, I bring up the technology refutation that I had just brought up along with one more thing. Realize that if they have genetic diseases and such, we can still learn from them. It is possible that what they get, we can get too. If this were not true, then we would not really use them as animal models. We don't have to sacrifice those lives in vain, instead we can try to research their issues as well. All in all, cloning in the medical field is used for animal models so we do not have to sacrifice humans.

Thus through the refutations made above and because of my standing argument, I affirm.
Debate Round No. 2


I forfeit this round and all succeeding rounds. Good job to my opponent :)


I give thanks to my opponent again for posting this great topic. It was fun debating such a nice and good debater. I was honored to debate and I hope that this was enjoyable to my opponent as well!
Debate Round No. 3


Forfeited round


Opponent has unfortunately forfeited the remaining rounds.
Debate Round No. 4


Sorry I'm a beginner at debate :P


Do not worry my friend! We aren't here to go hot-headed at each other. We come here to also learn.
Debate Round No. 5
No comments have been posted on this debate.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by Krazzy_Player 5 years ago
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Total points awarded:13 
Reasons for voting decision: Concession.

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