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Argument: Pushing forward with human cloning violates the precautionary principle

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Supporting quotations

"Why Environmentalists Oppose Human Cloning And Inheritable Genetic Modification". Friends of the Earth. Retrieved June 3rd, 2008 - "Why Environmental Groups Oppose Human Cloning

While all of us seek to improve the quality of human life, certain activities in the area of genetics and cloning should be prohibited because they violate basic environmental and ethical principles - principles that form the core values for which the environmental movement stands.

Precautionary Principle

The precautionary principle is a cornerstone of environmentalism. It requires that we have some regard for the consequences of our actions before we carry them out. In this century alone, the list of unforeseen and unintended consequences of modern industrial civilization is enormous; so is the attendant economic and environmental damage. The unforeseen and devastating consequences of the use of CFCs, DDT, and PCBs illustrate the need for this underlying principle.

The field of genetic engineering has become notorious for flaunting this basic standard. This is illustrated by the case of the detrimental impacts of Bt corn on the Monarch butterfly, discovered after 20 million acres of genetically modified corn were planted across the U.S. Only after the problem was revealed by researchers was the most harmful variety of this corn, Bt 176, removed from the market. The unregulated nature of this field of research has allowed commercial interests to proceed with mass crop plantings in the absence of safety checks by federal agencies and before essential research into the consequences of releasing such genetically modified organisms was done.

Research science is being used to make changes in the food we eat, the way human beings are born and live, but it is not being used to ensure that those changes are appropriate and safe for their widespread implementation. As environmentalists, we must question the formidable arrogance of those who claim to know and understand the consequences of profoundly altering nature. Given the alarming lack of regulation in the field of genetic engineering, we must take active steps to avoid being pushed over the precipice of human cloning and inheritable genetic modification."

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