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Bioethics - Essay Example

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At all costs we must avoid any double talk when dealing with the bioethical issue of using spare embryos for scientific research. The task ahead is not easy to dissect as there are many conflictive arguments on both sides of the coin. Proponents and opponents abound in the same manner as the pros and cons proliferate with deep and urging intensity…
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Download file to see previous pages We have to listen to all sides in order to get a wider idea of the complexity of this debate. But we also have to be firm in our position once we have reached a sound and factual conclusion. That way we avoid any kind of hypocrisy, and there will not be any double talk in our grasp of the issues at hand.
Scientists, lawyers, policymakers, theologians, ethicists, and lay people have something to say about this matter. Many have spoken their minds raising up high their heated arguments. All of them have the right to give their opinions, and we will listen to some of them as we move forward up to our concluding words. We have to keep in mind the fact that at the end God is the centre of the debate. According to the position that we might defend, human freedom of choice becomes an alibi for behaving as we please, or it is the subject of a higher dimension in the eyes of God.
When dealing with new reproductive technologies, we should study the bioethical aspects of such new instruments of Science. The mere production of spare embryos as well as their use for scientific research raises some serious bioethical questions that need to be answered. Just from the natural point of view, we have arguments in favor of showing respect for any kind of embryos, even if they are classified as "pre-embryos". C. W. Kischer gives us some useful information about the idea behind the term "conception", and its relationship with the beginning of human life: ""When animal experiments were done in the 18th and 19th centuries, deductive reasoning led to the conclusion that life began at conception; and, finally, this was observed directly by the first in-vitro fertilization procedures with human gametes some 40 years ago" (Kischer 2002).
Following this kind of reasoning -not taking God into account, just from the natural point of view- Kischer arrives to this conclusion: "We should respect a microscopic human embryo because at that time it is an integrated whole organism, just as the human is at every moment in time until death. Every human embryo deserves as much respect as you or I because it is formed as a new individual human life within the continuum of life as a manifestation of NATURAL LAW!" (Kischer 2002) (Kischer's own emphasis in capital letters).
Kischer speaks about a "continuum of life", and there are three different opposing views on this idea as R. Hoedemaekers explains in detail. He states that there are three fundamental positions with regard to the moral status of a new unborn human life: the first one is "continuity in development", and this view gives personhood to the embryo from the very beginning, that is, from conception, with the same degree of value and dignity as a human being; the second one is "discontinuity in development", and this position treats the embryos from two different angles, first as a property at conception, and much later as a person, depending on the age in development; and the third one is "incremental or gradual development" that assigns a lesser to a greater degree in personhood to the ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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