Human Cloning And Immanuel Kant Essay

1135 words - 5 pages

Ruben GuizarPhilosophyOver the last decade, the advent of cloning andadvancements in human genetic research have presentedsociety with a complicated moral quandary. Debate rages asto what constitutes legitimate paths of inquiry and whereto draw the line as to research that strikes many people asmorally wrong. The basic question is: "how does societydetermine what's right?" While, of course, questionsregarding human genetic research are new, this basicquestion is as hold as civilization and has been addressedover and over again by history's great philosophers. One ofthe most notable philosophers of the modern era is ImmanuelKant, who was born in Prussia in 1724. Kant paid a greatdeal of attention to formulating a complex system ofmorality. The following examines Kantian morals andhow they might be applied to questions of human geneticresearch.Kant's moral theory is predicated on the idea of the"categorical imperative," which Kant described in thefollowing manner, "Act only on that maxim which you can atthe same time will to be a universal law"(Honderich, 1995,p. 436). By the term "maxim," Kant meant general rules orprinciples upon which rational individuals act, and thatthese principles reflect the end that an individual has inmind in choosing actions of a certain type in givencircumstances (Honderich, 1995). Therefore, maxims areprinciples in the following form: "When in an S-typesituation, act in an A-type manner in order to attain end-E" (Honderich, 1995, p. 436). For example, a person mightresolve to pay a bill as soon as it is received in order tonot incur any debt. Kant tested a maxim by performing athought experiment in which the individual asks oneselfwhether or not one would will a certain maxim to becomeuniversal law. As this suggests, moral law, in thephilosophy of Kant, is inherent in reason itself. It is apriori, before experience (Frost, 1962). In everycircumstance, Kant believed that "categorical imperative"provides a sure criterion for how to evaluate right andwrong (Frost, 1962). Kant maintained that an action thatthe individual can easily will that everyone should followand perform would necessarily have to be a good act(Frost, 1962).Morality for Kant not only involved law (categoricalimperative) but also the ultimate end to which action isdirected. As the formulation of the concept of categoricalimperative suggests, the basic problem for Kant was todiscern the meaning of "right and wrong, good and bad"(Frost, 1962, p. 94). Fundamental to Kant's thinking wasthe principle formulated by Rousseau that the onlyfundamentally good thing in the universe is the "human willgoverned by respect for the moral law or theconsciousness of duty" (Frost, 1962, p. 94). He considereda moral act to be one that is performed out of respect formoral law, rather than for selfish gain or sympathy forothers (Frost, 1962).Therefore, unlike other moral systems, Kant did notsee consequences as the criteria for determining the moralvalue of a specific action....

Find Another Essay On Human cloning and Immanuel Kant

Human Cloning and Congress Essay

852 words - 3 pages Human Cloning and Congress     Recent months have seen news of biotech advances all along the front: cloned cats, artificial wombs, nascent human-animal hybrids, genetic selection of embryos for implantation, fetal-tissue manipulation--and on, and on, nearly every day bringing some news item about the technology that is redefining what it means to be human. The question is, do we want this redefinition? And this essay attempts to answer

Immanuel Kant, John Stuart Mill, Plato, and Aristotle:Morals and Ethical Codes

1160 words - 5 pages What is the appropriate action? It is a controversial question that is a focal point for moral and ethical codes. Morals and ethics is, of course, a subject that runs deep in the discussion of philosophy. People are faced with moral dilemmas everyday, which many times society decides without thoroughly exploring their options. Immanuel Kant, John Stuart Mill, Plato, and Aristotle are philosophers that focus on the topic of ethics, yet all have

Comparative essay describing the ethics of Aristotle, Immanuel Kant, and Emmanuel Levinas.

893 words - 4 pages Philosophers live and encourage others to live according to the rules of practical wisdom. Aristotle, Immanuel Kant, and Emmanuel Levinas were three philosophers who sorted out various ethical approaches. They investigated complex human actions and theorized what is the ethical thing to do. For instance, Aristotle contemplated the aim of human life, Kant observed duty and obligation from respect for the law, and Levinas examined one's

Kant vs. Mill: Human Rights and Utilitarianism

2106 words - 8 pages , and have been shaped by several factors, including philosophical theories in the past. This paper looks at the theories of two philosophers, Emmanuel Kant and John Stuart Mills, and how their teachings can be used to explain the sources of human rights. Kant’s moral philosophy is very direct in its justification of human rights, especially the ideals of moral autonomy and equality as applied to rational human beings. John Stuart Mills’ theory of

Science Today and Human Cloning

843 words - 3 pages Science Today and Human Cloning Nowadays, we are being constantly fed with the prophecy that molecular biology is the next revolutionary "wave" replacing information technology which has changed the way we live in the past 50 years. The past decade has seen scientists making significant breakthroughs in this field to start the current biotechnology hype. One defining achievement was the cloning of a sheep named Dolly by Dr. Ian Wilmut of

The Present and Future from Human Cloning

1567 words - 6 pages Is the cost of a life worth that of a loved one? Human cloning is a topic that has existed since the 1970’s when Dr. John Gurdon cloned a frog. From cloning a frog in 1970 to cloning a sheep in 1997, the technological advances in cloning have exponentially increased. The concept of human cloning is to retrieve the DNA of a human and place it into the embryo of a woman and the child born 9 months later would be a replica of the original person

The Benefits and Ethics of Human Cloning

1522 words - 6 pages The Benefits and Ethics of Human Cloning Introduction On February 24, 1997, the whole world was shocked by the news that Scottish scientists had successfully cloned a sheep. Dolly an artificially cloned mammal was born a star. After the shock, that cloning was not only a possibility but a reality, wore off the out cry against human cloning began. Physicians, scientists, politicians and church leaders and many more have been trying to ban

The Pros and Cons of Human Cloning

835 words - 3 pages "To clone or not to clone?" that is the question troubling the mind's of many Americans and citizens all over the world. Imagine how life would become when millions of people start looking alike, acting alike, and thinking alike. There would be no diversity what so ever in today's society. Ban human cloning!, Jean Bethke Elshtain author of "To Clone or Not to Clone", displays a strong argument as to why human cloning should be banned

Animal and Human Cloning: Moral, Ethical, and Regulatory Issues

2478 words - 10 pages Animal and Human Cloning: Moral, Ethical, and Regulatory Issues Dolly, woolly, innocent, and sweet, strongly contrasts with the severity of the issues that she has raised. Ever since the news surfaced that Dr. Ian Wilmut had succeeded in cloning a sheep, people around the world have been participating in a frenzied debate over the morality of cloning animals, and more importantly human beings. The cloning of animals and humans could help

The Science and the Laws Impacting Human Cloning

6561 words - 26 pages The Science and the Laws Impacting Human Cloning Human cloning, long the subject of science fiction, is today a practical reality. Recent breakthroughs, most renowned the cloning of a sheep from an adult cell in Scotland in 1997, have caused the world to acknowledge that human cloning is indeed possible. Governments around the world immediately attempted to address the issue of human cloning, with varying levels of success. At

The Effects Human Cloning Has on Society and People's Reactions

1163 words - 5 pages The Effects Human Cloning Has on Society and People's Reactions *Missing Works Cited* The purpose of this year's study is to determine what effects does human cloning have on society and how people react to human cloning. The most commonly cited ethical and moral arguments against human cloning seem to originate from religious perspectives. These religious arguments can even be made by politicians and scientists

Similar Essays

Comparing David Hume And Immanuel Kant

1386 words - 6 pages Comparing David Hume and Immanuel Kant David Hume and Immanuel Kant each made a significant break from other theorists in putting forward a morality that doesn’t require a higher being or god, for a man to recognize his moral duty. Although Hume and Kant shared some basic principals they differed on their view of morality. In comparing the different views on human will and the maxims established to determine moral worth by David Hume and

Cloning And Human Cloning Essay

2128 words - 9 pages this definition of the “What are the Risks of Cloning,” the one who have the exact same copy as the other is considered a clone. According to the “National Human Genome Research Institution,” there are three methods of creating clones: gene cloning, reproductive cloning and therapeutic cloning. Gene cloning produces the exact copy of the DNA while reproductive cloning produces copies of whole organisms. And therapeutic cloning will produce

Truth And Goodness In Immanuel Kant And St. Thomas Aquinas

3328 words - 13 pages unknowable except through the way our experience of it is shaped by the categories through which the human mind reasons about it. The two views of truth have divergent consequences for ethics. Aquinas’ philosophy produces a tradition of moral clarity that endures to the present, while the philosophy of Kant leads ultimately to the cultural relativism and moral skepticism that are widespread in the modern world. For Immanuel

Analyzing The Political Thoughts Of Immanuel Kant And G.W.F. Hegel

1922 words - 8 pages Director Steve McQueen, in his 2013 film “12 Years a Slave” provides four examples of the philosophical arguments of both Immanuel Kant and G.W.F Hegel. Hegel’s Phenomenology of Spirit argues two forms of consciousness. His categorization on the codependent relationship between lord and bondsman is complementary to Kant’s political thought on the categorical imperative. Kant argues in The Grounding of Metaphysics of Morals, that in the