The Corner

Where Does Human Cloning Stand?

Human cloning has largely disappeared from the headlines in recent years, and it’s almost hard to remember when the prospect of it, and the political debate surrounding cloning for medical research and for producing children, were front and center in our politics. 

But although most journalists have moved on, research into cloning has continued apace, and the challenges it poses to our society haven’t gotten any easier. A new report published in the latest issue of The New Atlantis reviews how far cloning research has advanced and considers some disturbing new possibilities it now opens up. The report, called “The Threat of Human Cloning: Ethics, Recent Developments, and the Case for Action,” is a product of the Witherspoon Council on Ethics and the Integrity of Science, a group chaired jointly by Robert P. George of Princeton University and Dr. Donald Landry of Columbia University. (I am one of the council’s members.)

The report makes the case for prohibiting all forms of human cloning and prohibiting the creation of human embryos for research. As the report notes, “Taking a stand against cloning now, while there is still a consensus among Americans that cloning is profoundly wrong, will be an essential part of a defense of the family in coming years.” You can read the whole report on the New Atlantis website here.

Yuval Levin is the editor of National Affairs and a fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center.

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