Three Women Pregnant With Cloned Babies

Gordon Mohr gojomo@usa.net
Wed, 24 Apr 2002 19:57:06 -0500


Paul Prescod writes:
  [I wrote:]
> > I would not be surprised to see some (but not all or most)
> > abortion opponents making the same allowance for cloned
> > fetuses, especially if they believe such clones are in
> > some way unnatural or exist in contravention to the will
> > of god.
> 
> Maybe a tiny fraction. I think you wanted to trap people you don't like
> into some kind of a paradox and it turns out that there is no paradox at
> all. The manner of conception can be immoral and yet the life created
> would still be valuable.

Which people do you surmise I don't like? 

I have a lot of respect for the anti-abortion position, somewhat
less for the anti-cloning position.

When those two anti- views are combined, and placed alongside the 
reality of women pregnant with cloned fetuses, I expect the most 
fervent combined anti-abortion/anti-cloning types to face a 
quandary that might result in some interesting intellectual
contortions. 

I'm still not sure that we've seen the views of anyone who
adamently believes that both abortion and cloning should be banned. 
Does that combination capture your beliefs?

I'm still eager to see some prominent (public figures) agitators 
against these two procedures explain what they'd like to do with 
viable clone fetuses. Perhaps they will say that the cloned fetuses 
have a right to life, and should be accepted as full, valuable 
human lives no matter what. That would certainly be a reasonable
position. 

But if they do say that, and the mother/donors/doctor/etc. all
think the cloning was a good idea, what's the rationale for
banning cloning, or punishing those involved in the process? If 
cloning just creates wonderful human beings deserving of love, 
who's the victim, and what's the principle being harmed by allowing 
them?

"Love the clone, hate the cloning" is a tricky position.

Further, the strength of anti-abortion fervor has in the past 
moved some fringe/extreme types to actual murder. Anti-clone fervor 
seems of nearly the same strength, and often the same theological 
derivation. 

I thus find it plausible that anti-clone agitators might try to 
kill either cloning technicians or clone offspring, either 
in vigilante actions or via legally-sanctioned enforcement
actions/punishement, inside the womb or out. Such actions wouldn't 
be unprecedented.

So to summarize:

"I wonder what people who are adamently against both cloning and 
abortion would argue should be done with these pregnancies." means
exactly what it says. I am not implying any paradoxes or personal
biases against certain viewpoints. 

I suspect the same sort of anti-abortion folks who think some
abortions are justified might find clone abortions justified,
maybe even desirable.

I suspect the sort of fervent anti-cloning folks who would 
typically be against abortion might make an exception for 
clones. 

The ways that people reconcile clashes between absolutes are
very interesting!

- Gordon