John Tierney’s article, which was published in New York Times, expounds on cloning of human embryo and its acceptability in different parts of the world with a focus on Europe and Asia. The controversy arising in this regard is whether cloning of the human embryo is morally acceptable or whether its acceptance is an affront to the supremacy of God. Arguments for and against cloning fall into two domains: the religious perspective and the scientific perspective. Some religious factions generally argue that cloning of the human embryo is immoral and is akin to competing with God in the ability to ‘create’ human beings. In the scientific domain, cloning, whether of human embryos or other animals, is viewed as an avenue to express advancement in science and achievements that are possible through scientific research.
The salient implications of the article are that acceptability of human cloning depends on which religion one subscribes to. Tierney is disdainful in his reference to religions and uses the term religious dogma to refer to religious beliefs. In the writer’s continental classification of religions, he states that Western religions are more alarmed by human cloning than Asian Religions. To that effect, scientists who are interested in advancing ideas in human cloning are more welcome in Asia than in the West. He singles out Buddhism and Hinduism in which the belief of reincarnation is in line with cloning. In contrast, according to Tierney, adherents of the Christian faith opine that human cloning is immoral, but maintain a softer stance on cloning of other organisms. However, the journalist does not mention anything on the position of other religions such as Islam on human cloning.
Although a self-proclaimed libertarian; the journalist, John Tierney, does not expressly state his opinion on the acceptability of human cloning. However, his concluding statement suggests he has endorsed the idea that Asian Religions condone human cloning by stating that those who are desperate to practice cloning will have to look to the East as opposed to the West. This is a hint that he regards Western religions, predominantly Christian, to oppose human cloning while the Eastern or Asian religions support human cloning. He remains ambivalent on whether human cloning should be banned or accepted.
The two major political factions in the US hold different positions on human cloning. Democrats support human cloning while Republicans are opposed to it on the basis that it would result into destruction of human embryo and that would be unacceptable. In a vote to determine the fate of the issue back in 2007, more republicans than Democrats voted against the Cloning Bill.
.Human cloning affects my position as a human in that it is most likely to have more negative effects than positive effects. For example, if human cloning is allowed, human life will no longer be as valued as it is currently and that may lead to irresponsible killing of human beings simply because one can go to the laboratory to create another. Worse still, clones could be made specifically for selfish purposes of being used for wars by nations against each other. My opinion on the controversy is that at the moment, human cloning should be banned as there is no sufficient legal framework to govern human cloning. Worse still, cloning could also lead to permanent damage to the human race as mutations may occur that could damage the genetic makeup of humans.
Tierney, J. (2007, November 20). Are Scientists Playing God? It Depends on Your Religion. New York Time, pp. 1A, 2A.