(Mar. 26) — A private company which claims to have created the first cloned human announced in Las Vegas on Friday that it has now produced 13 cloned babies and they are all healthy.
The company, known as Clonaid, is viewed with skepticism in scientific circles, not only because of the cloning claims, but also because of its association with the Raelian Movement, which believes humans were created in a lab by space aliens.
“I hope that everyone in this room, when your child or grandchild is sick, you don’t run to the church or the temple, you run to the hospital because you prefer science,” said Rael, leader of Raelian Movement.
The Raelian Movement, led by its prophet Rael, claims 80,000 members worldwide, it’s a religion but one that believes in the supremacy of science, not a supernatural being. Rael, a former french race car driver, teaches that humans were cloned by space aliens in a lab, which is why his organization advocates cloning research by the private Clonaid company, whose head now claims to have produced 13 healthy cloned babies around the world and who vows to one day provide proof.
“These children are alive and perfectly healthy. It’s not as if they disappeared. They can be shown at any time. Its only a question of time,” said Dr. Brigitte Boisselier, Clonaid scientist. As if to irritate religious groups even more, Clonaid has also entered the controversial field of stem cell research, to be used as an anti-aging tool, administered at a Clonaid rejuvenation spa.
And if that sounds outrageous, it pales next to Rael’s vision of the future, one in which designer bodies can be implanted with memories, allowing eternal life on earth, not in heaven.
“Then when you are about to die, you download all the data from your brain in the brain of the new you, and you are for a new life with a young body, your memory and personality,” Rael said. Before you ask where to sign up, Rael acknowledges this is still a ways off. Not surprisingly, his denunciation of all other religions as being superstitious fairy tales has generated death threats from all over the world.
Mainstream science may hold a dim view of the cloning claims, but the publicity has sparked a big jump in Raelian membership in the past year, he says. As with other Raelian statements, that too is a tough one to prove. Rael will make a public appearance Tuesday night at the UNLV Student Center.