If you had to raise the clone of a famous person of your choosing, who would it be?

Inspired by the wooly mammoth cloning thread—

Suppose that a high tech offshore fertility clinic now allows you to give birth to the clones of famous people. Almost anyone’s fair game, and because they’re off-shore they don’t have to worry about regulations, so through bribing men’s room attendants and hair stylists and a variety of other folks they have the DNA of pretty much every famous person you can think of from science to show business to industry to politics and anything in between.
Due to an odd agreement with the Justice Department you have agreed to be foster parent(s) to one of these clonebabies. You don’t have to give birth to it (surrogate moms are around) and you’ll have the money to provide for it, but there are a few ground rules:

—It has to be somebody who is either currently living or has died only in the last few years (let’s say last 25 or so, though that’s only a rough guideline)

—The person will have absolutely no legal rights to the estate of their generator, so if you give birth to a Bill Gates or Warren Buffett replicant it’s not going to entitle you to a penny of their money.

—The clone will of course be a newborn, so if you choose, say, Kurt Vonnegut he won’t be the curmudgeonly old man with memories of Dresden but a little baby who’s never known Indianapolis or war or a suicidal mother and may or may not have the wit and talent of the original (since it’s hard to say how much of that is nature v. nurture)

—No Buddy Ebsen clones, it would fulfill too many prophecies.

—No choosing a kid so that in 20 years you can say “You know, I’m not really your parent” and marry them, for that’s just sick.

Who would you raise?


I’m tempted to say Theodore Roosevelt but he is an example of nurture over nature I think.

I think Einstein would possibly be able to contribute again to science. So Einstein it is. Next choice is Tesla.

Alternate choice is Babe Ruth and coach him early and get him to sign with the Yanks.

Margot Fonteyn.

I come from a family of serious klutzes. We’re the sort of people who manage to stumble over anything including our own feet. We are not corps de ballet material let alone prima ballerinas around here. The thought that someone might actually be inherently artistically graceful astounds and delights me.

Thankfully no one has raised the issue, but I want to say;

Raising a clone of one of history’s greatest monsters (Hitler, Stalin, etc) with the express purpose of messing with them would itself be one of the most monstrous crimes I can imagine.

As the OP, the clone is NOT the original. It is a unique person with a unique soul/personality/potential.

Raising a child who happened to be Hitler’s clone with the idea of telling that kid “You’re a clone of the greatest monster in human history, that’s why I’m doing X to you”, even if X is “trying to raise you to love everyone” is a horrific thing to do to an innocent child.

I always thought Nathan Lane would be a wonderful son.

You guyyyyys, he said either currently living or recently died.

Cat Stevens for me. He seems soulful and would probably not be a demanding child. And if musical talent has anything to do with genes rather than nurture, I’ll get to listen to sweet music all the time.

Would it be morbid to pick Michael Daniel Smith? He looked like a sweet little boy…

Damn OP with its “”“rules”"". I don’t care if it’s sick, I would still…

Wait, no I wouldn’t. I would be bogged down by choice.

A fascinating experiment would be to raise a clone of, say, Fred Phelps, and test out that whole nature vs nurture thing. Though I wouldn’t risk it, in case the nature side wins. I bet he would make a terrible son.

I would like to take a genius and raise them in a way to see if the genius can be expressed differently. I got the idea when I realised House would probably make a good mathematician, if only he were raised differently. And real.

So could Ed Witten version two become a great composer? Or will he fall “back” into physics? That is my choice of test.

That’s all fine and good but I still think you need to teach him how to shape the mustache when he is a teenager. In fact, he may be one of the few teenagers that isn’t picked on and that is a huge win. At home though, he could still be your sweet little pumpkin.

I always thought if I could guarantee my kid would be like Dakota Fanning (ie, like a tiny adult) I’d have one. So I guess I’d pick her.

I reject your what if reality!


Tiger Woods. With that much natural golfing talent, even if I wasn’t nearly as great a mentor as Earl Woods, he’d be on the PGA Tour so long as I could instill just a little bit of the virtues of practice in the Tiger Clone.