Bringing Back the Woolly Mammoth and the Cloning Debate…

Hi Class! This week we’ve read, viewed and discussed some amazing stories related to the recent woolly mammoth discovery. As you have seen, it raised an intriguing and divisive question about cloning. What is your position on cloning?

In a well written paragraph (or more) share your stance on whether cloning should be allowed. Provide your BIG IDEA, then support it with convincing details. Be sure your writing includes:

  • properly formatted sentences (capitalization & punctuation)
  • a variety of sentences forms (simple, compound and complex)
  • transition words
  • precise and powerful wording
  • a concluding thought for the reader to consider

Your post must be submitted no later than 12:05, April 28, 2015. (Tuesday)

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53 Responses to Bringing Back the Woolly Mammoth and the Cloning Debate…

  1. alibear 101 says:

    Cloning the mammoth is a bad idea! This discovery of the woolly mammoth is a great deal but it is very dangerous and can lead to a neglected fight. This is like the story of the ugly duckling coming to life.
    The woolly mammoth prefers to be in a group… they want to clone ONE, she will be the only, lonely one on earth. I know that elephants are nice but what will an Asian elephant think when she gives birth to a woolly mammoth. Asian elephants are also an endangered species so really, we are taking an endangered species and trying to bring back an extinct. We haven’t even much to help the endangered but yet were trying to bring back an extinct animal, this could be dangerous and harmful to the largest land animal, the Asian elephant. This is not all about wealth, it is about thinking of what will really happen if we do this.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Thanks for your post Aliya – you’ve raised an important point in this debate about our motives for cloning. Would you be in favour of cloning if people did not make money from it? Similarly, would cloning be tolerable if there were no negative outcomes?

  2. Beau says:

    In my opinion cloning is an absurd idea. Firstly, cloning is not a natural way for animals to have babies because scientists change the DNA in the egg so the animal gives birth to a different or similar animal. Secondly, the Mammoth will have to live in a controlled environment, after it is born because scientists will then want to study the fascinating species. Thirdly, there would be only one Mammoth on the planet, and it would be difficult because they are social animals. Finally, we do not know how much land or food these animals would need because they are large animals and this would be a problem. In addition, Mammoths could cause other animals to go extinct as well because they would not have enough food to live off of and that could also be another worry. To sum it up I think cloning is a foolish idea and scientists should absolutely not do it!

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Thanks for your detailed argument Beau! ‘Absurd’ is a great word choice – now see if you can connect all of your supporting details to a bigger picture. What is absurd about cloning? In this case you could say that it is because there are many undesirable outcomes resulting from cloning.

      What will your arguments be when people say that the problems you outline are solvable, or that the mammoths were once on Earth, so why can’t they be returned?

  3. Max daburger says:

    I think the idea of cloning a mammoth is a great idea! Sure it may harm 1 Asian elephant but we get a woolly mammoth! We can study it to find out why it went extinct what foods it ate to find out what foods existed back then like maybe they ate unicorn! PLUS if we find out why mammoths went extinct we an help save the Asian elephant! so I think cloning a mammoth is a great idea!

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Thanks for your post Max. Your view about the rewards outweighing the risks is a good reason in favour of cloning. That said, can you foresee any situations where the risks associated with cloning are more significant than the rewards?

  4. Layla says:

    I disagree with the idea of cloning the wooly mammoth. Although there are some advantages of cloning, like we could clone some of the creatures that are recently going extinct, there are also downsides to cloning. Since Asian elephants are the closest thing to the wooly mammoth we have, we would have to implant a mammoth egg into the Asian elephant, therefor we would have to keep several Asian elephants in captivity, which may not be the very best idea because Asian elephants are somewhat rare, and may not do well in captivity. Another reason is because mammoths are naturally very social animals, and often travel in packs of 4 or 5, so if we clone the woolly mammoth, it would be the only one on earth so it would be alone, it would not be socializing with one of its own kind, therefore it would not be able to learn the virtues of a wooly mammoth. Another reason we should not clone the wooly mammoth, is that it may be very dangerous and aggressive to other creatures, like the Asian elephant, humans, or otherwise. My last reason is that we should wait on the wooly mammoth and work on other species that are going extinct, like the tiger, the fennec foxes, clouded leopards, and others. That reaches my conclusion that we should not yet clone the wooly mammoth.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Thank you for your detailed argument Layla! Your final thought leads me to ask who gets to decide which animals are first in line? How would you deal with this dilemma?

  5. Alyse Coates says:

    I think cloning should be allowed according to the purpose. If an animal is about to go extinct cloning would be a good idea to keep the species going. If cloning the mammoth works it would be the best thing that has happened in this generation. No one living this day has seen a real living mammoth, it would be historical if mammoths walk this earth again.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Thanks for your thoughts Alyse. Your idea to decide on a case by case scenario leads to the question about who gets to make the decision? In your view, who would be in charge of deciding what cloning situations are acceptable?

  6. mackenzie says:

    I think cloning is a good thing an a bad thing. first off I think cloning the mammoth would be cool but were would we keep it in the zoo or in the wild. And there would only be one mammoth an mammoths like to be in heard’s. But it would help with all this global warming so that’s a good thing. But what if in the future they start cloning people. The clone could to something bad like rob a bank or something an then you could get blamed for it. So in my opinion it think cloning could be good or bad.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Thanks for your post Mackenzie. If you had to debate this topic, which side would you be on? Your reasons make sense and are important to consider. This activity was intended to have you choose a side.

      Quick Fix:
      – ‘and’ is different than ‘an’ (Cloning is a good thing and a bad thing). This sentence could be improved to: Cloning is both good and bad. The word ‘thing’ is overused.
      – ‘were’ vs ‘where’ (Where were you yesterday?)
      – Two sentences begin with ‘But’. Some other words that mean the same as ‘but’ are: yet, nevertheless, however, still. Click here for a list.

  7. Quintin says:

    I think cloning is good because you can bring back extinct and recreate history. We can bring Mammoths back and save people’s lives. There are lots of things that could happen if cloning successfully works on humans and other animals. Cloning is really good for the reason that people that have died back.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Thanks for your post Quintin. What are the benefits of recreating history? Similarly, you can improve your argument but giving specific details and reasons rather than, “There are lots of things that could happen…” What are the things you mention?

  8. Ryo says:

    Is cloning the right thing? Well its a very controversial subject. But this is no ordinary cloning subject its about cloning a mammoth that’s been extinct for over 40,000 years. Its said to be able bring down the green house gasses and help the ozone and agree this is something that should be cloned. Its got a very big benefit that no one can say no to yet people still disagree for what ever reason that they don’t think its right and the mammoth should just be studied. I fell that it will be revolutionary to bring back something that is extinct.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Indeed Rio, it will be revolutionary – good observation! What limits should be in place in this debate? Should scientists keep going so that they can clone all living things?

      Quick Fix:
      – it is = it’s
      – I fell vs I feel (there is a big difference between fell and feel)

  9. Shyla says:

    Cloning is a great idea though a terrible idea because there is always the chance of a failure in the process of cloning, but there is always the plus side because it gives people a chance to maybe clone their pets that have past away. I agree with cloning because it gives scientists the chance to learn more about prehistoric creatures, it would be smart for them do work with the prehistoric creatures in a secure area in case of the creature becoming enraged or dangerous. Other than just prehistoric stuff cloning gives people the chance to get the cat, dog, or other pet that they have had back after it passes, this maybe be very costly for the people who want it done but some people love their pet enough that they would spend all that money to get them back. . Everything has its ups and downs but cloning gives people and scientists new opportunities and it could change the world.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Thanks for your post Shyla. Your point about recreating loved ones is interesting because a cloned version of a family pet (or even family member) will not have the same temperament as the original. Say you had a terrific, friendly, obedient dog that you have cloned and the clone turns out to be none of these. What would you suggest should happen in this instance?

      Quick Fix:
      – passed away (not past)

  10. Devon says:

    I think Cloning is a amazing idea because it can bring people back to life and save people. Cloning can bring people back to life from getting some cells from that person and then you do more stuff and then a baby version of you will be made as a baby and they can take your organs and stuff since its Cloning yourself so if you need a new heart, you got one! Also if you need anything else you can just get cloned by a cloning person and then you got extra body parts. Indeed if the human race or animals is dying out we can clone a lot more people.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      You raise an interesting aspect in this debate Devon because there are indeed many possible benefits. What will your response be to the arguments that cloning yourself for a body part is cruel treatment to your clone? Should human cloning occur, what treatment should they get from non clones?

  11. skye says:

    I think cloning is a bad idea because animals and people are meant to die and be done with not cloned and put back on the earth. I think cloning is a utter disgrace to humanity it was bad enough on animals but if they do it to humans someday it would be horrible. Plus if they did ever clone a human it would not have the same personality so people might mistake your clone for you witch your clone might have a bad personality and then people might dislike you. And extincted animals are not meant to be cloned they probably went extincted for a reason plus if someone did clone the mammoth it would be the only one on earth and mammoths are very social animals witch usually travel in groups witch it can not do and not socializing might not be healthy for for the mammoth. But all and all i think cloning is a bad idea and humans should not clone animals or people for the sake of normality.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Thanks for your powerfully written post Skye! I love the phrase ‘utter disgrace to humanity’. You raise an important point that the personalities of clones will not be identical to the originals.

      Quick Fix:
      – ‘witch’ and ‘which’ have different meanings; ‘witch’ is the lady riding the broom at Halloween; use ‘which’ when you specify information
      – ‘extinct’ is the word to describe living things that are no longer alive (not ‘extincted’) Extinct animals are not meant to be cloned…

  12. Madison. D says:

    I say that cloning could be a bad idea because the baby would be a girl and it would be the only wooly mammoth on earth plus the poor thing would have to live in captivity for the rest of its life and what if it escapes. It would be hard for the Asian elephant to have a baby wooly mammoth plus if the have to keep trying with a bunch of Asian elephants they might become extinct and then there would have no more Asian elephants and they would also be extinct and then that would be an another big problem. And who would be responsible for the woolly mammoth plus they are social animals and there would need to be more then one. And that is why I think that it could be a bad idea.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Thanks for your post Madison. You’ve raised some important issues and possible consequences.

      Reread your opening sentence. In it, you’ve raised too many ideas that run on. Your first sentence sets up your paragraph: Cloning is a bad idea because it leads to many negative outcomes. From there, you can mention your reasons as supporting details.

      As you’ve written it, there are only three sentences in your response. Use more punctuation to organize your ideas. Adding more periods will give the reader a chance to catch his/her breath too!

  13. josh says:

    I think cloning is a good thing to do because there is so much more good thing to do than bad things. The two best thing about it is that like the mammoth they can bring back extinct animals like the dodo bird or the atlas bear. Also they can make two of you if you have a rare blood type then they can take blood for the little baby you and place it into the adult you.
    I think the only bad thing about cloning is that it may be seen as a bad thing to do by other countries and it may make some mutant alien thing that could look really weird.
    So my final verdict is that it could be a good thing to do.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Thanks for your post Josh. Wisely, you mention that there are positive and negative outcomes. In your view, who gets to decide a country’s position on cloning?

      Quick Fix:
      – Your opening sentence can be improved by using more powerful words than ‘good thing’. For example: Cloning is a great idea because the benefits outnumber the drawbacks.

  14. Nolan Virgo says:

    I think cloning is amazing idea because if you need a transplant they could clone you and take whatever they need from the clone. Also if a female does not have any eggs left we can take the eggs from the clone. If you wanna save your family pet you can clone it to save the old one. Cloning can bring people back to life like if they need cells and it better than people dying so cloning can save peoples lives. People have heart conditions so the clone could give them a new heart. Thats my opinion on cloning.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Thanks for your post Nolan. There are many potential benefits related to cloning. That said, what is your feeling about creating a clone to take its heart or other vital organs?

      Quick Fix:
      – wanna (it’s slang); use ‘want to’ instead

  15. Char says:

    I think cloning is a stupid thing to do (with the woolly mammoth) because Woolly mammoths are very social animals, and the scientist would possibly only have enough DNA for one egg, meaning there would only be one woolly mammoth, on the earth! And putting the woolly mammoth DNA to an endangered animal, is just stupid. They should be cloning endangered animals instead of extinct animals. The scientist know some of the things it ate, but not how much they need to survive, how much space they need, or if they are aggressive to humans or other animals. Seeing how we don’t know exactly how long it will survive I’m saying it would be a bad idea.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Thanks for your post Charlize. Your point about the minimal difference between one living animal in a species versus an extinct species is interesting. Couldn’t the argument be made that before scientists can get to two or three mammoths, they have to start at one?

  16. Apache says:

    I think cloning the mammoth is a great idea because if if doesn’t go well and doesn’t work out at least you tried. If it does go well you can try different things with it and make more mammoth and start up the population again. Also if we succeed at it the technology will go up and scientists could accomplish anything. The scientist could help you if you have a heart problem or if you need a kidney they can clone another one of you and take it out of the clone of you. It can help us learn how they would live in their natural habitat.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Thanks for your post Apache. I love how you connect progress to a starting point. What would you say to the people that argue scientists should even start to clone animals?

  17. Cheyanne says:

    I think that to bring the mammoths back to life would be an extraordinary breakthrough for us. First of all because then it would help us to further understand them because we would be able to research them in their “living” state. Also because they are using an Asian elephant it would have a mother to care for it until it is ready for the world, because elephants are the kindest animals on earth they will probably without a doubt accept the mammoth as their own. To help further my opinion is the fact that bringing mammoths back could possibly help us fight back against our problems caused by global warming. With bringing back these beautiful amazing extinct creatures we could be able to cure some diseases that have progressed throughout many years. On top of that we might even be able to do more things than our minds could have possibly done without this clone of the wooly mammoth. Along with that there could still be things we don’t yet know about that could possibly change the world as we know it for the better.

  18. Richard says:

    Cloning good or bad ?
    I believe cloning could be great for the following. Organ donations would be so much simpler. We could research cures for diseases on clones. save world hunger by animal cloning. But it is bad, dolly took 267 tries before she was made and she still had problems and lived a shorter life and what would happen if we did it on a human. since cloning clones the control, they inherit everything they have, including diseases and/or abnormalities which could be a widespread epidemic
    if human cloning did become reality what could we do about abuse of clones.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Thanks for sharing some of the details from our reading and viewing this week Richard. It adds credibility to your argument. What conditions would you put in place to prevent abuse of clones if scientists cloned humans on a large scale?

  19. jayme says:

    I think cloning is a good idea because, scientists could clone mammoths and bring the species back and learn more about mammoths and how they survived in the cold, freezing weather. I also think its a good idea because in the future scientist could clone humans so if someone needed a transplant for an organ and there was no one with the same blood type they can clone them self and use an organ from the “baby you” and that could save somebody’s life. Another reason why I think cloning is a great idea is because it’s getting the mammoths to come back to earth and re-curate mammoths. If cloning does work it could help save species and lives and stop extinction. Cloning could help the Earth by cloning plants to keep us alive. For those reasons I think cloning is a fantastic idea.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Thanks for your argument and reasoning Jayme. You raise the point about cloning for organ transplants. Normally organs are donated because the body can live without a full set, or they are collected when someone dies. What rules/conditions would you make if scientists cloned humans?

  20. Morgan says:

    I would say that cloning is a good idea because if we bring the mammoths back then we could learn more about them, and if they accomplish this then in the future if any other animal is going extinct scientist can clone them to make sure they don’t go extinct. If they bring the mammoth back the world would be able to see them again and figure out how they survived in the cold. Maybe the scientists would be able to clone humans at some point in the future so if anyone needs a organ and there’s no one with the same blood type then the you that’s a baby could lend you one. Who knows maybe cloning them could make the world a better place. The scientists are using a Asian elephant to clone the mammoth and the elephant is a lot like the mammoth so it would be perfect and the mammoth baby would have a mother instead of being alone. So that is why i think cloning is an awesome idea.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Thanks for your post Morgan. You’ve raised many key points in favour of cloning. What specific thoughts do you have related to making the world a better place? Give some examples.

  21. lydia says:

    in my opinion I think cloning is good. The reasons I think cloning is good is for one, if scientists get the population up it could help with the ever increasing global warming because they thought that the woolly mammoth helped with global warming in the past, that’s why it was so cold. Second of all not only we’ll be able to know more about an animal that lived about 400,000 years ago, but also if you have a rare blood type than scientists can clone you and get that blood and most likely save you. So in conclusion I think cloning is going to be a good thing.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Thanks for your sharing your argument and reasons Lydia. You’ve summarized many of the favourable points that we’ve read and viewed. To improve your paragraph, state a big idea in your opening sentence using a strong statement: Cloning will benefit humans. Too often, the word ‘good’ is overused and loses its meaning (How was your day? Good. How was dinner? Good? How was your weekend? Good.).

  22. Madison H says:

    I honestly think that cloning could be a good thing. If we use it correctly. We can help prevent sicknesses and problems with the human body. For example. If you have a special blood type and you are badly in need of blood , scientists could clone you. But also, doesn’t that sound a little inhumane? Cloning someone for blood? Then again, this could also prevent certain species of animals from going extinct. So, I guess you could say cloning is a good thing. Thank you for taking your time to read my opinion on cloning.

    -Maddy H

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Thanks for your thoughts Maddy. You’ve connected some important ideas in a smooth manner. It’s good that you understand some arguments from both sides of this debate. If you had to choose one side though, how would you strengthen your position? Lastly, your final sentence would be best used in a speech to an audience. When writing a convincing argument, try to craft a final thought that makes the reader agree with your position (or at least think more about what you have said).

  23. Isahia says:

    I don’t like the idea of cloning. My question would always be: What food would it eat? What country would it do well in? The asian elephant for the process is bad as it might harm an endangered species and since it is social, what would the wooly mammoth interact with? Its diet could be a big problem, thinking about the plants the mammoth would eat? Sure they say they eat dandelions and all but would it satisfy the mammoths hunger? The scientists would need to get some asian elephants for the cloning process. SInce the asian elephant is rare and does NOT do well in captivity this could be the problem. The more research we do, unfortunately the blood could try out resulting this opportunity blown out of the way. The DNA part of having a asian elephant filling in any missing holes of the genes is strange, this could make the traits and unique taken away from the wooly mammoth. My last thought is that we should do more research and get as much DNA for the genes to make the wooly mammoth really feel prehistoric!

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Thanks for your detail argument Isahia! Perhaps in the cloning process, scientist can alter the genes related to food requirements so that these animals can survive on less…who knows?

  24. Madison says:

    Cloning is a good idea…….but not for the mammoth or humans. It is the best idea just for the fact that we could clone more Asian elephants and other endanger species. Then in about 5 to 6 years they could start cloning the mammoth because this way they have made more Asian elephants so they are no longer endanger so this way every one is happy. For the people who want to clone humans that’s out of the question,its idiotic we are meant to die we have a set number of days ok? Accept it.If someone thow has a rare disease and they need a lot of blood but you can’t find a downer, well then don’t make a new person with the same blood type just try to clone the blood its self. So my final conclusion is that humans die so let us die in peace or in pain and want to clone the mammoth and just clone the animals that need it. Cloning is good:3.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Thank you for your comments Madison. How can cloning be controlled so that it’s only done on animals and not humans?

      Quick Fix:
      – add a space after a comma and a period
      – it is = it’s
      – a donor donates a donation (not downer)

  25. tenille says:

    Cloning sounds like a spectacular idea and it should be aloud because it would be incredible if mammoths were to walk the earth again. We could see them in action and not just imagining what they’re like. Exploring how mammoths move, eat and interact with humans for the first time would be astounding because we don’t know much about them. Cloning the woolly mammoth could change a lot in the future because if we succeed it could be possible to clone other animals or even humans. That could save lots of lives, you would be able to bring back animals and humans that have passed. The only problem is that the woolly mammoth is a very social animal and the one that they are cloning would be the only one on earth, hopefully the Asian elephant will except the mammoth so it won’t feel alone. Soon I hope there will be many more on earth and scientist will have brought an extinct animal back to earth.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Thanks for your post Tenille. Be sure to recognize that cloning does not bring back the original creature, it is a copy.

      Quick Fix:
      – aloud vs allowed (You are allowed (permitted) to speak aloud (out loud) during a discussion.)

  26. Garet says:

    Cloning a woolly mammoth is definitely not the best decision that could be made because the cons seem a little to high for the pros to make a difference.  First the mammoth would have to live in captivity all of its life and no one in this era has had a pet mammoth. Second the mammoth staying in captivity could anger groups such as Peta, some animal rights activists tend to get angry over a silly upgrade in a video game so cloning a mammoth might anger them. Third cloning isn’t natural and involves bringing things to life with a long process of something that might not voluntarily be a mother to something. Fourth cloning well it does seem to work most of the time it is not a guarantee that the clone will not be messed up even just a little bit. Fifth no one has cloned a mammoth yet as of   May, 1st. 2015 and they haven’t cloned a mammal as large as a mammoth before which could have terrible effects. Sixth cloning would only changes what will be born and likely would not solve hunger or any food related problems unless they improve upon this method to make it so that there doesn’t have to be a mother and the creature can just be brought into existence. Seventh some people think that cloning a human and using the baby for rare blood types is a good idea but haven’t thought all that much about the consequences such as the baby dying in the process and there could be side effects and some one actually has to give birth to the baby which could take a while and the patient might not live that long also its organs wouldn’t be fit for an adult. Eighth this would mean the closest matching creature would have to be used due to the lack of woolly mammoths and that creature is an Asian elephant which is already an endangered species. They definitely should improve the process of cloning before they mess up on something where they have limited mammoth DNA for cloning.

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