Genetic Engineering: In Search of Perfection Argumentative Essay by YY

Genetic Engineering: In Search of Perfection
An overview of genetic engineering and its future prospects in creating the 'perfect baby'.
# 49759 | 1,958 words | 6 sources | MLA | 2002 | US
Published on Mar 17, 2004 in Biology (Genetics) , English (Argument) , Medical and Health (Public Health Issues)

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In recent years, medicine has been so greatly affected by technological advances that it has gone beyond therapy and towards the limits of our imagination. Unlike a few years ago, when conceiving a baby girl or a baby boy was a matter of chance, today's prospective parents can choose to alter the genetic make-up of their children in order to enhance their offspring's well-being in the future. This paper shows, however, that it is not clear if modern society is ready to face the consequences of genetic engineering. On one hand, scientists agree that, from a medical standpoint, genetic technologies do, in fact, hold promising potential. The paper shows that, on the other hand, genetic engineering focused on improvement of the human species involves profound ethical and political risks that are to be taken into serious consideration. The paper argues that not until we become fully aware of the issues surrounding genetic technologies should we pursue the illusion of creating a "perfect baby" and intrude upon our children's lives by intervening with their genes.

From the Paper:

"What does modern germline engineering have to do with eugenics of the past? Obviously, contemporary genetic technologies are nowhere near encouraging or discouraging certain groups of people from reproduction. However, the science seems to be turning away from its primary purpose of bringing human beings to life free of diseases towards enhancing otherwise normal human beings. This trend looks like a resurrection of eugenics at a more advanced scientific level. Daniel Wikler confirms that people are clearly worried about genetic engineering moving from "medical" concern for the individual to "eugenic" ambitions for improving the gene pool in general?(because) this move was accompanied, early this (last) century, by great wrongs, harms justified by the greater good?" (14). Is germline engineering simply a new name for eugenics? "

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