August 14, 2002


Coveting a clone : Families facing infertility, death of loved one turn to cloning (Julia Sommerfeld, 8/13/02 MSNBC)
When Katherine Gordon's teenage daughter died in a car accident five years ago, she became obsessed with the idea of cloning her child's genes. Cristina and Vince Revert are both infertile and see cloning as the only way they can have a child who is genetically related to them. And Liz Catalan, who suffers from premature ovarian failure, wants to bear her own child but refuses to use another woman's egg--preferring to raise her own later-born identical twin.

PEOPLE LIKE Liz Catalan are not narcissists out to populate the world with their likeness. Their motivations of love and loss are a far cry from the bioengineering nightmares depicted in science fiction novels and movies.

They are simply among a small but passionate group who, due to infertility or the loss of a loved one, feel that human cloning technology would fill some void in their lives.

Ms Sommerfeld's point about narcissism seems precisely wrong. Cloning is being sold as a kind of morally neutral medical procedure that has little or nothing to do with reproduction and the psychological desires of potential parents, but these folks seem fairly typical of the real reasons people support cloning. It's not really about healing the sick but about "filling voids" in the lives of the healthy and about our selfish desire to duplicate ourselves.
Posted by Orrin Judd at August 14, 2002 11:16 PM
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