Contemporary Ethical Issues

Here, I would like to reflect on Ethics lecture on week 8. Week 8 was on Monday, March 4, 2013. In this lecture, we studied about some ethical issues, such as: abortion, cloning, surrogacy, and euthanasia.

Abortion is the termination of pregnancy by the removal or expulsion from the uterus of a fetus or embryo prior to viability. An abortion can occur spontaneously, in which case it is usually called a miscarriage, or it can be purposely induced. The term abortion most commonly refers to the induced abortion of a human pregnancy. In this case, we learnt whether abortion was ethical or not. The abortion that we mean here is the abortion with intention, not the spontaneous abortion.

Then, in biology, cloning is the process of producing similar populations of genetically identical individuals that occurs in nature when organisms such as bacteria, insects or plants reproduce asexually. Cloning in biotechnology refers to processes used to create copies of DNA fragments (molecular cloning), cells (cell cloning), or organisms. The term also refers to the production of multiple copies of a product such as digital media or software. The term clone is derived from the Ancient Greek word κλών (klōn, “twig”), referring to the process whereby a new plant can be created from a twig. In horticulture, the spelling clon was used until the twentieth century; the final e came into use to indicate the vowel is a “long o” instead of a “short o”.

Since the term entered the popular lexicon in a more general context, the spelling clone has been used exclusively. Dolly, a Finn-Dorset ewe, was the first mammal to have been successfully cloned from an adult cell. Dolly was formed by taking a cell from the udder of her biological mother. Her embryo was created by taking the cell and inserting it into a sheep ovum. The embryo was then placed inside a female sheep that went through a normal pregnancy. She was cloned at the Roslin Institute in Scotland and lived there from her birth in 1996 until her death in 2003 when she was six. Her stuffed remains were placed at Edinburgh’s Royal Museum, part of the National Museums of Scotland

Surrogacy is an arrangement in which a woman carries and delivers a child for another couple or person. The surrogate may be the child’s genetic mother (called traditional surrogacy), or she may be genetically unrelated to the child (called gestational surrogacy). In a traditional surrogacy, the child may be conceived via home artificial insemination using fresh or frozen sperm or impregnated via IUI (intrauterine insemination), or ICI (intracervical insemination) performed at a health clinic. A gestational surrogacy requires the transfer of a previously created embryo, and for this reason the process always takes place in a clinical setting.

Euthanasia (from the Greek: εὐθανασία meaning “good death”: εὖ, eu (well or good) + θάνατος, thanatos (death)) refers to the practice of intentionally ending a life in order to relieve pain and suffering. From the lecture at this week, I learnt many definition of some ethical issues going on in this world. In my point of view, those ethical issues are not ethical since I see it from religious view. In Islam, we are not allowed to modify human beings. We are also prohibited to create a human being. It is only Allah that creates the human being in this world. For killing the human being, men are also not allowed to do so. Things about life is only for the creature.


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