Genetic Perfection?

"I belonged to a new underclass, no longer determined by social status or the color of your skin. No, we now have discrimination down to a science."

-Vincent Freeman, Gattaca



Want to select the cognitive abilities of your child?  Choose their gender? Their sexual orientation?   Their moods?  Hair color?

The cost of genetic screening continues to drop.  We are getting to the point with IVF we can screen embryos not just for risk of genetic based diseases, but for other traits.

Want your child to be a great athlete? Want your child to have green eyes?

Want your child to have the traits of a great leader?  A great composer? A photographic memory?

How will society change when parents can decide in advance they don't want a child that is shy? Not short?  Not plain looking?  Will we end up with a society where most children grow up as handsome or as gorgeous as Brad Pitt or Scarlett Johansson?


Who controls the genetic info?  Who decides?  Parents? Should doctors participate in creating designer babies?  How will this impact society where some children are genetically designed for the best, and some are mutts?

What are the unintended consequences?  What historic figures would not have existed if genetic screening had been an option?  Lincoln?  Hawking? Vincent Van Gogh?


Join us for a moderated discussion of the ethics of genetic engineering.

Join or login to comment.

  • Michelle

    Sorry. I would be very late to the disussion and I don't want to disrupt the group by being late.

    September 20, 2013

  • Loreen K.

    Hard enough to find "jeans" that fit @ the store. Now people want to manipulate the "genes" we're born with? Can you say scary?

    1 · September 19, 2013

  • Barry

    Likely to be late, but I will be there once I get my genes straightened out.

    1 · September 18, 2013

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