Baby to Go!

by claa.difranco on February 2, 2014 - 4:16pm

If choosing a baby was as easy as choosing a pair of shoes, would you do it? “Designer Babies” may be the next new fad in the near future; however scientists’ debate whether its use will be for eliminating genetic disorders or opening doors to vanity. Author Mike Steere from CNN reports on scientists that are genetically screening and curing embryos so that they can be born without debilitating diseases. This breakthrough advancement in technology can revolutionize how we conceive; so why not alter the child’s eye color, hair color and maybe their personality at the same time? It is through a process called “inheritable genetic modification” which allows scientists to screen embryos for diseases. This process is also known as karyomapping, which is to date the most efficient technique.

To some people, genetically altering their unborn child is completely unacceptable. First of all, the costly procedure and the risks involved are enough of a reason to stay away. There is then the factor of interfering with fate and playing God. If a child is destined to be born with an illness despite ones best’s efforts during pregnancy, than that is the path that was chosen for them and nothing should be done to alter that. That being said, using this technology for aesthetic reason is very shallow and superficial. Who are you to decide whether your child should be perfect, or determine what perfect even means? Given the fact that this procedure is not accepted or can be afforded by everyone, this will create an obvious gap in our society; a new social class will be born, or as Mike Steere states, the “genetic elite”. This process is irreversible and may cause other health concerns in the future that we may not be equipped to face.

In today’s society, being unfit or unhealthy is seen almost as a handicap; why not prevent that from happening to your child before they are even born. If a doctor were to tell you that your unborn child will be born with Leukemia, wouldn’t you alter their genes to save their life from suffering? Genetic engineering gives parents the opportunity to give their child a better chance at success. We live in a world where first impressions are what counts, it is sad but true. The process will only facilitate their lives aesthetically and ensures their health physically and mentally. There is no reason why one shouldn’t be able to fix a problem before it even starts. Even without the use of technology, children are being altered by their parents through religion, education and even language, so why does genetic alteration seem to be any different. Every parent wants the best for their child, and if blue eyes, blond hair and slender bodies is their definition of the best, then so be it. In china, being born a female is frowned upon and usually results in adoption or abortion. With genetic engineering, we are able to decide the gender of the child which will avoid many issues like this.

Personally, I am for genetic engineering. I believe that everything we do, eat and say in today’s society is modified, some of which do no benefit us in any way at all. Genetic engineering is no different. Genetic engineering has been compared to Hitler creating the Aryan race, however, it is a personal choice and not every parent will chose to modify their child the same way or even at all. Having a healthy child is every parent’s priority; and I personally do not see the issue in assuring your child’s health and well-being before they are born. As stated previously, many people believe that this advancement in technology with create a social deviation however, social gaps and elite groups have always existed for centuries. The 21st century is based on physical appearance and mental abilities and unfortunately these attributes play a role in a person’s future success, it’s the survival of the fittest.

So, would you genetically modify your unborn child so that is can be the healthier, prettier or even smarter? 

 

http://www.cnn.com/2008/TECH/science/10/30/designer.babies/

Comments

Unfortunately I don’t agree with the argument that we should alter our unborn children to have certain physical attributes in order to have a better life. As you said “may cause other health concerns in the future that we may not be equipped to face.” It is a new very terrifying technology that results in social inequalities and as seen in the past in the creation of a genetically elite society only achievable so the most fortunate of our society. I believe that yes it could prevent many illnesses and I do believe it is truly astonishing technology but I think it is working for the parent’s interest of a few fortunate elites. What happens if someone who does not have the needed funds to save his baby of a illnesses. Is it okay for the poor to have sick babies? I don't think so!

I totally agree with your opinion that if one can make his child smarter, prettier or even healthier we should defiantly do it. We live in a faced past society where we are all concerned about is the degrees we have and our waist size. If one can make their kids not have diseases like "Leukaemia" we should take every measure to prevent that from happening. My opinion is greatly affected by my values which is advancement. Especially in this day in age, if one can do something to look or feel good about themselves they should do so. My moral claim revolves around the notion that one should always do that which leads to the greatest amount of overall happiness. However, there is a question that comes in mind, if every kid gets rid of their defaults/ disabilities what will their children look up too as their role models?