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Philosophy and Science Policy in the American Cloning Debate

Cunningham, Thomas V. (2014) Philosophy and Science Policy in the American Cloning Debate. Master's Thesis, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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This thesis explores current United States policies prohibiting public funding for nonreproductive cloning, logically reconstructs their justification, and argues against it. I show that a common conceptual framework underlies the national prohibition on the use of public funds for cloning research, which I call the simple argument. This argument rests on two premises: that research harming human embryos is unethical and that embryos produced via fertilization are identical to those produced via cloning. In response to the simple argument, I challenge the latter premise. I demonstrate there are important ontological differences between human embryos (produced via fertilization) and clone embryos (produced via cloning). After considering the implications my argument has for the morality of publicly funding cloning for potential therapeutic purposes and potential responses to my position, I conclude that such funding is not only ethically permissible, but also humane national policy.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Cunningham, Thomas
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairWicclair, Markwicclair@pitt.eduWICCLAIR
Committee MemberWhite, Douglas B.whitedb@upmc.eduDBW13
Committee MemberLondon, Alex
Date: 27 January 2014
Date Type: Publication
Defense Date: 6 December 2013
Approval Date: 27 January 2014
Submission Date: 6 December 2013
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Number of Pages: 82
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences > Bioethics
Degree: MA - Master of Arts
Thesis Type: Master's Thesis
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: nonreproductive cloning; somatic cell nuclear transfer; embryo; moral status; potentiality; stem cell research; bioethics
Date Deposited: 27 Jan 2014 15:57
Last Modified: 19 Dec 2016 14:41


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