9. Wisdom of Repugnance: Why We Should Ban the Cloning of Humans

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23 Οκτ 2013 (πριν από 3 χρόνια και 8 μήνες)

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9
. Wisdom of Repugnance: Why We Should Ban the Cloning of Humans

《厌恶的智慧》
(
人与自然
)

B

䱥on Kass

列昂
·
卡斯





Cloning creates serious issues of identity and
individuality. The cloned person may experience
concerns about his distinctive identity not only because he will be in genotype and appearance identical
to another human being, but, in this case, because he may also be twin to the person who is his "father
"
or "mother"

if one can still call them that. What would be the psychic burdens of being the "child" or
"parent" of your twin? The cloned individual, moreover, will be
saddled
1

with a genotype that has
already lived. He will not be fully a surprise to the world. People are likely always to compare his
performances in life with that of his alter ego. True, his nurture and circumstance in life will be
different; genotype
2

is not e
xactly destiny. Still, one must also expect parental and other efforts to
shape this new life after the original

or at least to view the child with the original version always
firmly in mind. Why else did they clone from the star basketball player, mathema
t ician, and beauty
queen
-
or even dear old Dad
-
in the first place?


Since the birth of Dolly, there has been a fair amount of
doublespeak
3

on this matter of genetic
identity. Experts have rushed in to reassure the public that the clone would in no way be th
e same
person, or have any confusions about his or her identity: as previously noted, they are pleased to point
out that the clone of Mel Gibson would not be Mel Gibson. Fair enough. But one is
shortchanging
4

the
truth by emphasizing the additional importa
nce of the intrauterine environment, rearing, and social
setting: genotype obviously matters plenty. That, after all, is the only reason to clone, whether human
beings or sheep. The odds that clones of Wilt Chamberlain will play in the NBA are, I submit, i
nfinitely
greater than they are for clones of Robert Reich.


Curiously, this conclusion is supported, inadvertently
5
, by the one ethical sticking point insisted on



1

saddled vt. saddle ['sædl]

过去式和过去分词
,承受;使负担


2

genot ype ['d
ʒ
en
ə
ta
ɪ
p; 'd
ʒ
in
-
] n.
基因型;遗传型


3

doublespeak ['
d
ʌ
blsp
ɪ
k] n.
欺人之谈,故弄玄虚的言词,模棱两可的用词。

4

shortchanging

vt. shortchange [
ˌ
ʃɔ
:t't
ʃ
eind
ʒ
]
的变形,欺骗;(找钱时故意)少找零钱。

5

inadvertently ['
ɪ
n
ə
d'v
ɝ
tntl
ɪ
] adv.
非故意地;不注意地。近义:
unintentionally, carelessly

by friends of cloning: no cloning without the donor's consent. Though an orthodox liberal ob
jection, it
is in fact quite puzzling when it comes from people (such as Ruth Macklin") who also insist that
genotype is not identity or individuality, and who deny that a child could reasonably complain about
being made a genetic copy. If the clone of Mel

Gibson would not be Mel Gibson, why should Mel
Gibson have grounds to object that someone had been made his clone? We already allow researchers to
use blood and tissue samples for research purposes of no benefit to their sources: my falling hair, my
expec
torations
6
, my urine, and even my biopsied tissues are "not me" and not mine. Courts have held
that the profit gained from uses to which scientists put my discarded tissues do not legally belong to me.
Why, then, no cloning without consent

not including, I

assume, no cloning from the body of someone
who just died? What harm is done the donor, if genotype is "not me"? Truth to tell, the only powerful
justification for objecting is that genotype really does have something to do with identity, and
everybody kn
ows it. If not, on what basis could Michael Jordan object that someone cloned "him," say,
from cells taken from a "lost," scraped
-
off piece of his skin? The insistence on donor
7

consent
unwittingly reveals the problem of identity in all cloning.


Genetic d
istinctiveness not only symbolizes the uniqueness of each human life and the
independence of its parents that each human child rightfully attains; it can also be an important support
for living a worthy and dignified life. Such arguments apply with great f
orce to any large
-
scale
replicat ion of human individuals. But they are sufficient, in my view, to rebut even the first attempts to
clone a human being. One must never forget that these are human beings upon whom our eugenic or
merely playful fantasies are
to be enacted.


Troubled psychic identity (distinctiveness), based on all
-
too
-
evident genetic identity (sameness),
will be made much worse by the utter confusion of social identity and kinship ties. For, as already
noted, cloning radically confounds linea
ge and social relations, for "offspring" as for "parents." As
bioethicist James Nelson has pointed out, a female child cloned from her "mother" might develop a
desire for a relationship to her "father," and might understandably seek out the father of her "
mother,"
who is after all also her biological t win sister. Would "grandpa," who thought his paternal duties
concluded, be pleased to discover that the clonant looked to him for paternal attention and support?



Social identity and social t ies of relationship
and responsibility are widely connected to, and
supported by, biological kinship. Social taboos
on incest (and adultery) everywhere serve to
keep clear who is related to whom (and
especially which child belon
gs to which
parents), as well as to avoid confounding the
social identity of parent
-
and
-
child (or
brother
-
and
-
sister) with the social identity of
lovers, spouses, and co
-
parents. True, social
identity is altered by adoption (but as a matter



6

expect orat ions [
ɪ
k
ˌ
sp
ɛ
kt
ə
're
ʃə
n] n.

[
中医
]
咳痰;吐痰;吐出物。

7

donor ['don
ɚ
] n.
捐赠者;供者;赠送人


of the best int
erest of already living children: we do not deliberately produce children for adoption).
True, artificial insemination and IVF with donor sperm, or whole embryo donation, are in some way
forms of "prenatal adoption
8
"
-
a not altogether unproblematic practice
. Even here, though, there is in
each case (as in all sexual reproduction) a known male source of sperm and a known single female
source of egg
-
a genetic father and a genetic mother
-
should anyone care to know (as adopted children
often do) who is genetical
ly related to whom.


In the case of cloning, however, there is but one "parent." The usually sad situation of the
"single
-
parent child" is here deliberately planned, and with a vengeance
9
. In the case of self
-
cloning,
the "offspring" is, in addition, one's

twin; and so the dreaded result of incest
-
to be parent to one's
sibling
-
is here brought about deliberately, albeit without any act of coitus. Moreover, all other
relationships will be confounded. What will father, grandfather, aunt, cousin, sister mean? W
ho will
bear what t ies and what burdens? What sort of social identity will someone have with one whole
side
-
"father's" or "mother's"
-
necessarily excluded? It is no answer to say that our society, with its high
incidence of divorce, remarriage, adoption, ex
t ramarital
10

childbearing, and the res t, already confounds
lineage and confus es kins hip and res pons ibility for children (and everyone els e), un les s one als o wants
to argue that this is, for children, a preferable s tate of affairs.


Hu man c loning would als o
repres ent a giant s tep toward turning begetting into making, procreat ion
into manufacture (literally, s omething "handmade"), a proces s already begun with IVF and genetic
tes ting of embryos. With cloning, not only is the process in hand, but the total genet
ic blueprint of the
cloned individual is s elected and determined by the human a rtis ans. To be s ure, s ubs equent
development will take place according to natural proces s es; and the res ulting children will s till be
recognizably hu man. But we here would be tak
ing a majo r s tep into making man hims elf s imply
another one of the man
-
made things. Hu man nature beco mes mere ly the las t part of nature to s uccumb
to the technological project, which turns all of nature into raw materia l at human dis pos al, to be
homogenize
d by our rationalized technique according to the s ubjective prejudices of the day.


How does begetting differ fro m ma king? In natural

procreatio
n,
human beings come together,
complementarily male and female, to give existence to another being who is formed
, exactly as we
were, by what we are: living, hence perishable, hence aspiringly erotic, human beings. In clonal
reproduction, by contrast, and in the more advanced forms of manufacture to which it leads, we give
existence to a being not by what we are but

by what we intend and design. As with any product of our
making, no matter how excellent, the art ificer
11

s tands above it, not as an equal but as a s uperior,
trans cending it by his will and creat ive prowes s. Scientis ts who clone anima ls make it perfectly c
lear
that they are engaged in ins trumental ma king; the animals are, fro m the s tart, des igned as means to
s erve rational human purpos es. In human cloning, s cientists and prospective "parents" would be
adopting the s ame technocratic mentality to human childr
en: human children would be their artifacts.


Such an arrange ment is profoundly dehumanizing, no matter how good the product. Mass
-
s cale
cloning of the s ame individual ma kes the point vividly, but the violat ion of human equality, freedo m,



8

prenat al adopt ion
亲本选择

出生前领养。

9

vengeance ['v
ɛ
nd
ʒə
ns] n.
复仇;报复


10

extramarital [
ˌ
ɛ
kstr
ə
'mær
ɪ
tl] adj.
私通的,婚外的,通奸的


11

artificer

[
ɑ
r
ˈ
t
ɪ
f
ɪ
s
ɚ
]
n.

技工;创造者;技师;能工巧匠。

and dignity are p
resent even in a single planned clone. And procreation dehumanized into manufacture
is further degraded by commodificat ion, a virtually inescapable result of allowing baby
-
making to
proceed under the banner of commerce. Genetic and reproductive biotechnolo
gy companies are already
growth industries, but they will go into commercial orbit once the Human Genome Project nears
complet ion. Supply will create enormous demand. Even before the capacity for human cloning arrives,
established companies will have inves
ted in the harvesting of eggs from ovaries obtained at autopsy or
through ovarian surgery, practiced embryonic genetic alteration, and init iated the stockpiling of
prospective donor tissues. Through the rental of surrogate
-
womb services, and through the bu
ying and
selling of tissues and embryos, priced according to the merit of the donor, the commodification of
nascent human life will be unstoppable.


Finally, and perhaps most important, the practice of human cloning by nuclear transfer
-
like other
anticipat
ed forms of genetic engineering of the next generation
-
would enshrine
12

and aggravate
13

a
profound and mischievous misunderstanding of the meaning of having children and of the parent
-
child
relationship. When a couple now chooses to procreate, the partners a
re saying yes to the emergence of
new life in its novelty, saying yes not only to having a child but also, tacitly, to having whatever child
this child turns out to be. In accepting our finitude and opening ourselves to our replacement, we are
tacitly conf
essing the limits of our control. In this ubiquitous way of nature, embracing the future by
procreating means precisely that we are relinquishing our grip, in the very activity of taking up our own
share in what we hope will be the immortality of human lif
e and the human species. This means that
our children are not our children: they are not our property, not our possessions. Neither are they
supposed to live our lives for us, or anyone else's lives but their own.


To be sure, we seek to guide them on thei
r way, impart ing to them not just life but nurturing, love,
and a way of life; to be sure, they bear our hopes that they will live fine and flourishing lives, enabling
us in small measure to

transcend
14

our own limitations. Still, their genetic dis tinctiven
ess and
independence are the natural fo res hadowing of the deep truth that they have their own and
never
-
before
-
enacted life to live. They are s prung fro m a pas t, but they take an uncharted cours e into
the future.


Much harm is already done by parents who t
ry to live vicarious ly through their children. Ch ildren
are s omet imes co mpelled to fulfill the b roken drea ms o f unhappy parents; John Doe, J r. or the III is
under the burden of having to live up to his forebear's name. Still, if mos t parents have hopes for

their
children, cloning parents will have e xpectations. In c loning, s uch overbearing parents take at the s tart a
decis ive s tep which contradicts the entire meaning of the open and forward
-
looking nature of
parent
-
child re lations. The ch ild is given a geno
type that has already lived, with fu ll e xpectation that
this blueprint of a pas t life ought to be controlling of the life that is to come.


Cloning is inherently des potic, for it s eeks to ma ke one's children (or s omeone els e's children) after
one's own im
age (or an image of one's choos ing) and their future according to one's will. In s ome cas es,
the des potis m may be mild and benevolent. In other cas es, it will be mis chievous and downright



12

enshrine [
ɪ
n'
ʃ
ra
ɪ
n] vt.


铭记,珍藏


13

aggravate ['æ
ɡ
r
ə
vet] vt.
加重;使恶化,使发炎,刺激


14

transcend [træn's
ɛ
nd] vt.
胜过,超越


tyrannical. But despotism

the control of another through one's will

it inevitably will be.


The defenders of cloning, of course, are not wittingly friends of despotism. Indeed, they regard
themselves mainly as friends of freedom: the freedom of individuals to reproduce, and the freedom of
scientists and inventors to discov
er and devise and to foster "progress" in genetic knowledge and
technique. They want large
-
scale cloning only for animals, but they wish to preserve cloning as a
human option for exercising our "right to reproduce"

our right to have children, and children
with
"desirable genes." As law professor John Robertson points out, under our "right to reproduce," we
already practice early forms of unnatural, art ificial, and ext ra
-
marital reproduction, and we already
practice
early forms of eugenic choice.

For this re
ason, he argues, cloning is no big deal.


We have here a perfect example of the logic of the slippery slope, and the slippery way in which it
already works in this area. Only a few years ago, slippery slope arguments were used to oppose
artificial insemina
tion
15

and IVF us ing unrelated

sperm
16

donors. Princ iples us ed to jus tify these
practices, it was s aid, will be us ed to jus tify more art ificia l and more eugenic pract ices, inc luding
cloning. Not s o, the defenders retorted, becaus e we can ma ke the necess ary d
is tinctions. And now,
without even a ges ture at making the necess ary dis tinctions, the continuity of practice is held by its elf
to be

justificatory
17
.


The principle of reproductive freedom as currently enunciated by the proponents of cloning
logically e mbr
aces the ethical acceptability of s liding down the entire res t of the s lope
-
to producing
children ectogenetically fro m s perm to term (s hould it become feas ible ) and to producing children
whos e entire genetic makeup will be the product of parental eugenic p
lanning and choice. If
reproductive freedom means the right to have a child of one's own choos ing, by whatever means, it
knows and accepts no limits.


But, fa r fro m be ing legit imated by a "right to reproduce," the emergence of techniques of ass isted
reprod
uction and genetic engineering s hould compel us to recons ider the meaning and limits of s uch a
putative right. In truth, a "right to reproduce" has always been a peculiar and problemat ic notion.
Rights generally belong to indiv iduals, but this is a right w
hich (before c loning) no one can e xerc is e
alone. Does the right then inhere only in couples? Only in ma rried couples? Is it a (wo man's ) right to
carry or deliver or a right (of one or mo re parents ) to nurture and rear? Is it a right to have your own
biolog
ical child? Is it a right only to attempt reproduction, or a right als o to s ucceed? Is it a right to
acquire the baby of one's choice?


The ass ertion of a negative "right to reproduce" certainly ma kes s ens e when it claims protection
agains t s tate interfere
nce with procreative liberty, s ay, through a program of co mpuls ory s terilization.
But s urely it cannot be the bas is of a tort claim agains t nature, to be made good by technology, should
free efforts at natural procreat ion fa il. So me ins is t that the right t
o reproduce embraces a ls o the right
agains t s tate interference with the free us e of all technological means to obtain a child. Yet s uch a
pos ition cannot be sus tained: for reas ons having to do with the means employed, any community may



15

inseminat ion [
ɪ
n
ˌ
s
ɛ
m
ə
'ne
ʃə
n] n.

[
畜牧
]
授精;播种;受胎


16

sperm [sp
ɝ
m] n.

精子;精液。近义:
seed, semen


17

justificatory ['d
ʒʌ
st
ə
f
ə
ˌ
ket
ə
r
ɪ
] adj.

辩护的;认为正当的


rightfully prohibit
surrogate
18

pregnancy, or polyga my, or the s ale of babies to infert ile couples,
without violat ing anyone's bas ic human "right to reproduce." When the exe rcis e of a previous ly
innocuous freedom now involves or impinges on troubles ome pract ices that the origi
na l freedo m never
was intended to reach, the general pres umption of liberty needs to be recons idered.


We do indeed already practice negative eugenic s election, through genetic s creening and prenatal
diagnos is
19
. Yet our p ractices are governed by a norm of health. We s eek to prevent the birth of children
who s uffer fro m known (s erious ) genetic dis eas es. When and if gene therapy becomes poss ible, s uch
dis eas es could then be treated, in utero or even before imp lant
ation
-
I have no ethical objection in
principle to s uch a practice (though I have s ome practica l worries ), p recis ely becaus e it s erves the
med ical goal of healing e xis ting indiv iduals. But therapy, to be therapy, imp lies not only an e xis ting
"patient,"


I
t
also implies a norm of health. In this respect, even germline gene "therapy," though practiced not
on a human being but on egg and sperm, is less radical than cloning, which is in no way therapeutic.
But once one blurs the distinction between health promot
ion and genetic enhancement, between
so
-
called negative and positive eugenics
20
, one opens the door t
o all future eugenic des igns. "T
o make
s ure that a child will be healthy and have good chances in life": this is Roberts on's principle,' and
owing to its la
tter claus e it is an utterly elas tic principle, with no boun
daries. Being over eight feet t
a
ll
will likely produce some very good chances in life, and so will having the looks of Marilyn Monroe,
and so will a genius
-
level intelligence.


Proponents want us
to believe that there are legitimate uses of cloning that can be distinguished
from illegitimate uses, but by their own principles no such limits can be found. (Nor could any such
limits be enforced in practice.) Reproductive freedom, as they understand it
, is governed solely by the
subjective wishes of the parents
-
to
-
be (plus the avoidance of bodily harm to the child). The
sentimentally appealing case of the childless married couple is, on these grounds, indistinguishable
from the case of an individual (ma
rried or not) who would like to clone someone famous or talented,
living or dead. Further, the principle here endorsed justifies not only cloning but, indeed, all future
artificial attempts to create (manufacture) "perfect" babies. A concrete example will
show how, in
practice no less than in principle, the so
-
called innocent case will merge with, or even turn into, the
more troubling ones. In practice, the eager parents
-
to
-
be will necessarily be subject to the tyranny of
expertise. Consider an

infertile
21

m
arried couple, s he lac king eggs or he lacking s perm, that wants a
child o f their (genetic) own, and propos e to clone either hus band or wife. The s cientis t
-
phys ician (who
is als o co
-
owner of the c loning company) points out the like ly difficu lties
-
a c loned c
hild is not really
their (genetic) child, but the child of only one of the m; this imba lance may produce s trains on the
ma rriage; the child might s uffer identity confus ion; there is a ris k of perpetuating the caus e of s terility;
and s o on
-
and he als o points

out the advantages of choos ing a donor nucleus. Far better than a ch ild of
their own would be a child of their own choos ing. Touting his own expertis e in s electing healthy and
talented donors, the doctor pres ents the couple with his lates t catalog contain
ing the pictures, the health



18

surrogat e ['s
ʌ
r
əɡɪ
t ] n.
代理;代用品;遗嘱检验法官
vt.

代理;指定某人为自己的代理人


19

diagnosis [
ˌ
da
ɪəɡ
ˈ
nos
ɪ
s]
n.
诊断;诊断结论


20

eugenics [j
u
'd
ʒɛ
n
ɪ
ks] n.
优生学,人种改良的方法
(
或过程
)



21

infertile [
ɪ
n'f
ɝ
tl] adj.

不能
生育
的。

records, and the accomplishments of his stable of cloning donors, samples of whose tissues are in his
deep freeze. Why not, dearly beloved, a more perfect baby? The "perfect baby," of course, is the project
not of the infert ili
ty doctors, but of the eugenic scientists and their supporters. For them, the paramount
right is not the so
-
called right to reproduce, but what biologist Bentley Glass called, a quarter of a
century ago, "the right of every child to be born with a sound ph
ysical and mental constitution, based
on a sound genotype . . .
T
hat is,

the inalienable right to a sound heritage." But to secure this right, and
to achieve the requisite quality control over new human life, human conception and

gestation
22

will
need to be

brought fully into the bright light of the laboratory, beneath wh ich it can be fert ilized,
nouris hed, pruned, weeded, watched, ins pected, prodded, pinched
23
, cajo led
24
, in jected, tes ted, rated,
graded, approved, stamped, wrapped, s ealed, and delivered. Ther
e is no other way to produce the
perfect baby.


Yet we a re urged by proponents of cloning to forget about the s cience fiction s cenarios of laboratory
manufacture and multip le
-
copied clones, and to focus only on the homely cas es of infertile couples
e xerc is
ing their reproductiverights. But why, if the s ingle cas es are s o innocent, s hould mult iply ing
their performance be s o off
-
putting? (Similarly, why do others object to people making money off this
practice, if the practice its elf is perfectly acceptable?)


When we follow the s ound ethical principle of univers alizing our choice
-
"would it be right if
everyone cloned a Wilt Cha mberla in (with his cons ent, of cours e)? Would it be right if everyone
decided to practice as exua l reproduction?"
-
we dis cover what is wr
ong with thes e s eemingly innocent
cas es.The s o
-
called s cience fiction cas es make viv id the meaning o f what looks to us, mis takenly, to be
benign.


Though I recognize certain continuit ies between cloning and, s ay, IVF, I be lieve that c loning differs
in es s e
ntial and important ways. But thos e who dis agree s hould be re minded that the "continuity"
argument cuts both ways.


Somet imes we es tablis h bad precedents and dis cover that they were bad only when we fo llo w their
ine xorable logic to places we never meant to

go. Can the defenders of cloning s how us today how, on
their princip les, we will be able to s ee producing babies ("perfect babies") entirely in the laboratory or
e xerc is ing full control over their genotypes (including s o
-
called enhancement) as ethically d
ifferent, in
any ess ential way, fro m pres ent forms of as s is ted reproduction? Or are they willing to ad mit, des pite
their attachment to the princip le of continuity, that the comp lete obliterat ion of "mot
her" or "father," the
complete
depers onalization of pr
ocreation, the co mplete manufacture of hu man be ings, and the
complete genetic control o f one generation over the ne xt would be ethically proble mat ic and es s entially
different fro m current forms of as s is ted reproduction? If s o, where and how will they draw
the line, and
why? I draw it at cloning, for all the reas ons given.


What, then, should we do? We s hould declare that human cloning is unethical in its elf and
dangerous in its likely cons equences. In s o doing, we s hall have the backing o f the overwhe lming




22

gest at ion [d
ʒɛ
'ste
ʃə
n] n.

怀孕;妊娠期;
(
计划在脑中的
)
酝酿,孕育,形成,发展。近义:
conception, pregnancy

23

pinched [p
ɪ
nt
ʃ
t] adj.

压紧的;痛苦的;困难的;收缩的。

24

cajoled vt. cajole [k
ə
'd
ʒ
ol]
的变形,以甜言蜜语哄骗;勾引。

majority of our fellow Americans, and of the human race, and (I believe) of most practicing scientists.
Next, we should do all that we can to prevent the cloning of human beings. We should do this by means
of an international legal ban if possible, and by

a unilateral
25

national ban, at a min imu m. Scientis ts
may s ecretly undertake to violate s uch a la w, but they will be deterred by not being able to s tand up
proudly to claim the credit fo r their technological bravado and s uccess. Such a ban on clonal
baby
-
m
aking, moreover, will not harm the progress of bas ic genetic s cience and technology. On the
contrary, it will reas s ure the public that s cientis ts are happy to proceed without violating the deep
ethical norms and intuitions of the human community.


This s ti
ll leaves the ve xed ques tion about laboratory res earch us ing early e mbryonic human clones,
s pecially created only for s uch res earch purpos es, with no intention to imp lant them into a uterus. There
is no ques tion that s uch res earch holds great promis e for g
aining fundamental knowledge about norma l
(and abnorma l) differentiation, and for developing tis s ue lines for trans plantation that might be us ed,
s ay, in treat ing leuke mia or in repairing brain or s pinal cord injuries
-
to mention jus t a fe w of the
conceivab
le benefits. Still, unres tricted clonal embryo res earch will s urely make the production of
liv ing human c lones much more likely. Once the genies put the cloned embryos into the bottles, who
can strictly control where they go (es pecially in the abs ence of l
egal prohibitions against imp lanting
them to produce a child)?


I appreciate the potentially great gains in s cientific knowledge and medical treat ment available fro m
embryo
26

res earch, es pecially with cloned emb ryos. At the s ame time, I have s erious res erva
tions about
creating human e mbryos for the s ole purpos e of e xperimentation. There is s omething deeply repugnant
and fundamentally trans gres s ive about such a utilitarian treat ment of p ros pective human life. This total,
s hameles s

exploitation
27

is wo rs e, in m
y opinion, than the

mere" destruction of nascent life. But I see
no added objections, as a matter of principle, to creat ing and using cloned early embryos for research
purposes, beyond the objections that I might raise to doing so with embryos produced se
xually.


And yet, as a matter of policy and prudence, any opponent of the manufacture of cloned humans
must, I think, in the end oppose also the creating of cloned human embryos. Frozen embryonic clones
(belonging to whom?) can be shuttled around without d
etection. Commercial ventures in human
cloning will be developed without adequate oversight. In order to build a fence around the law,
prudence dictates that one oppose
-
for this reason alone
-
all production of cloned human embryos, even
for research purpose
s. We should allow all cloning research on animals to go forward, but the only safe
trench that we can dig across the slippery slope, I suspect, is to insist on the inviolable distinction
between animal and human cloning.


Some readers, and certainly most
scientists, will not accept such prudent restraints, because they
desire the benefits of research. They will prefer, even in fear and trembling, to allow human embryo
cloning research to go forward. Very well. Let us test them. If the scientists want to be

taken seriously
on ethical grounds, they must at the very least agree that embryonic research may proceed if and only if
it is preceded by an absolute and effective ban on all attempts to implant into a uterus a cloned human



25

unilat eral ['j
ʊ
n
ɪ
'læt
ə
r
ə
l] adj.
单边的;
[

]
单侧的;单方面的;单边音;(父母)单系的。近义:
one
-
sided

26

embryo ['
ɛ
mbr
ɪ
o] n.
[

]
胚胎;胚芽;初期;
adj.
胚胎的;初期的。近义:
morning, prime, earlier, young

27

exploitation [
ˌ
ɛ
kspl
ɔɪ
'te
ʃə
n] n.
开发,利用。

embryo (cloned from an adult)
to produce a living child. Absolutely no permission for the former
without the latter.


The NBAC's recommendations regarding these matters were a step in the right direct ion, but a step
made limpingly and, finally, without adequate support.


To its credit,

the Commission has indeed called for federal legislation
28

to prevent anyone from
attempting to create a child through cloning; this was, frankly, more than I e xpected. But the mora l
bas is for the Co mmis s ion's oppos ition to cloning is, s adly, much les s tha
n expected and needed, and the
ban it urges is to be only temporary. Trying to clone a human being, s ays the Commis s ion, is "morally
unacceptable" "at this time" becaus e the technique has not yet been perfected to the point of s afe us age.
In other words, o
nce it becomes read ily feas ible to clone a hu man being, with little ris k of bodily harm
to the res ulting child, the Commis s ion has offered not one agreed
-
upon reas on to object.


Indeed, anticipati
ng
29

such improvements in technique, the Commission insists that

"it is critical"
that any legislative ban on baby
-
making through cloning should "include a sunset clause to ensure that
Congress will review the issue after a specified time period (three to five

years) in order to decide
whether the

prohibition
30

continues to be needed." Although it identifies other ethical concerns
(beyond the is sue of s afety), th is blue
-
ribbon ethics commis s ion takes no s tand on any of the m! It s ays
only that thes e iss ues "require much more wides pread and careful public delibera
t ion before this
technology may be us ed not to decide whether it s hould be us ed. Relativ is tically, it wants to ins ure only
that s uch ethical and s ocia l is s ues be regularly revie wed "in light of public unders tandings at that
time."' Th is is hardly the s ort
of princip led oppos ition to cloning that could be made the bas is of any
las ting prohibition.


Almos t as worris ome, the report is s ilent on the vexed question of creating cloned human emb ryos
for us e in res earch. Silence is, of cours e, not an endors ement, b
ut neither is it oppos ition. Given the
currently e xis ting ban on the us e of federal funds for any res earch that involves creating human
embryos for e xperimentation, the Co mmis s ion may have preferred to avoid needles s controvers y by
address ing this iss ue. B
es ides, thos e commis s ioners (no doubt a big majority) who favor proceeding
with c loned embryo res earch have in fact gained their goal precis ely by s ilence. For both the
moratoriu m on federa l funding and the legis lative ban called for by the Co mmis s ion are
confined s olely
to attempts to create a ch ild through cloning. The Co mmis s ion knows well how v igorous ly and rapidly
embryo res earch is progres s ing in the private s ector, and it s urely unders tands that its s ilence on the
s ubject

and Congress'

means that the

creation of human embryonic clones will proceed, and is
perhaps already proceeding, in private or commercial laboratories. Indeed, the report expects and
tacitly welcomes such human embryo research: for by what other means will we arrive at the expected
i
mprovements in human cloning technology that would require the recommended periodic
reconsideration of any legislat ive ban? In the end, the report of the Commission turns out to be a moral
and (despite its best efforts) a practical failure.





28

legislat ion [
ˌ
l
ɛ
d
ʒɪ
s'le
ʃə
n] n.

立法;法律;近义:
lawmaking

29

anticipating

v.

预感(

anticipate
的现在分词

);预见。

30

prohibition [
ˌ
pro
ə
'b
ɪʃə
n] n.

禁止;禁令。近义:
inhibition

Morally, this

ethics commission has waffled
31

on the main ethica l ques tion, by refus ing to declare
the production of human clones unethical (or ethica l). Practica lly, the

moratorium
32

and ban on
baby
-
making that the Co mmis s ion calls fo r, while we lcome as te mporary res tra
ints, have not been
given the jus tification needed to provide a s olid and las ting protection agains t the production of cloned
human beings. To the contrary, the Co mmis s ion's weak ethical s tance may be s aid to undermine even
its limited ca ll for res traint.
Do we rea lly need a federal law s olely to protect unborn babies fro m bodily
harm?


Opponents of c
loning need therefore

to be vigilant. They s hould press for leg is lation to permanently
prohibit baby
-
making through cloning, and they s hould take s teps to make

s uch a prohibition effective.


The propos al for s uch a legis lative ban is without American precedent, at leas t in technological
matters, though the Brit is h and others have banned the cloning of hu man be ings, and we ours elves ban
inces t, polygamy
33
, and oth
er forms of "reproductive freedom." Needles s to s ay, working out the details
of s uch a ban, especially a g lobal one, would be tric ky, what with the need to develop appropriate
s anctions for violators. Perhaps s uch a ban will prove ineffective; perhaps it w
ill eventually be s hown
to have been a mis take. But it would at leas t place the burden of practical proof where it belongs: on
the proponents of this horror, requiring them to s how very c learly what great s ocial or medica l good
can be had only by the cloni
ng of human beings.


We Americans have lived by, and pros pered under, a ros y optimis m about s cientific and
technological progres s. The technological imperat ive
-
if it can be done, it mus t be done
-
has probably
s erved us well, though we s hould admit that ther
e is no accurate method for weighing benefits and
harms. Even when, as in the cas es of environmental pollution, urban decay, or the lingering deaths that
are the unintended by
-
products of medical s uccess, we recognize the unwelcome outcomes of
technologica
l advance, we re ma in confident in our ability to fix all the "bad" cons equences
-
us ually by
means of s till

newer and better technologies.

How s uccess ful we can continue to be in s uch post hoc
repairing is at leas t an open ques tion. But there is very good re
as on for s hifting the paradig m around, at
leas t regarding thos e technological interventions into the human body and mind that will s urely effect
fundamental (and likely irrevers ible) changes in human nature, bas ic human re lations hips, and what it
means to
be a hu man be ing. Here, we s urely s hould not be willing to ris k everything in the na ive hope
that, s hould things go wrong, we can later s et them right.

The Pres ident's call fo r a moratoriu m on hu man c loning has given us an important opportunity. In a
truly

unprecedented way, we can s trike a b low for the hu man control of the technological project, for
wis dom, prudence, and human dignity. The pros pect of human cloning, s o repuls ive to contemplate, is
the occas ion for decid ing whether we s hall be s laves of unr
egulated progres s, and ultimately its
artifacts, or whether we s hall re ma in free hu man beings who guide our technique toward the
enhancement of human d ignity. If we are to s eize the occas ion, we mus t, as the late Pau l Ra ms ey wrote,
rais e the ethical ques ti
ons with a s erious and not a frivol
ous
34

conscience. A man of frivolous
conscience announces that there are ethical quandaries
35

ahead that we mus t urgently cons ider before



31

waffled ['w
ɔ
fld] adj.

犹豫不决

含糊其
词。

32

morat orium [
ˌ
m
ɔ
r
ə
't
ɔ
r
ɪə
m] n.

暂停,中止


33

polygamy [p
ə
ˈ
l
ɪɡə
mi]
n.

多配偶(制),一夫多妻(制)或一妻多夫(制);多妻制;一夫多妻制。

34

frivolous ['fr
ɪ
v
ə
l
ə
s] adj.
不重要的,毫无价值的


35

quandaries n.

困惑;左右为难的窘境。

the future catches up with us. By this he often means that we need to devise a new et
hics that will
provide the rationalization for doing in the future what men are bound to do because of new actions and
interventions
36

s cience will have made pos s ible. In contras t, a man of s erious cons cience means to s ay
in ra is ing urgent ethical questions

that there may be s ome things that men s hould never do. The good
things that men do can be made complete only by the things they refus e to do.





36

int ervent ions [
ˌ
int
ə
'ven
ʃə
n] n.
干预,干涉;处置(
intervention
的复数)