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View Full Version : Genetic engineering (for enhancements) for or against?


JonIrenicus
03-06-2009, 04:10 AM
I am cutting away the low hanging fruit first, not talking about genetically engineering people to be more resistant to cancer.

Oh no, I am talking raw enhancements.

Stronger, faster, Smarter, better looking, the entire crop of off limit options.


Are you for allowing this or against it?



I for one am for it. If I could take a pill or receive a treatment to make me smarter, I would take it in a heartbeat.

But then, I was never as large a fan as most seemed to be to cow down on bended knee as a slave to natures will, be at the mercy of the genetic lottery.

So I am a strong for, with all the downsides that come with. And make no mistake, as soon as we CAN do these enhancements, we WILL do these enhancements.

Starwatcher162536
03-10-2009, 11:47 PM
It will most likely create some social caste-like problems, however, no way will those problems be acute enough that we should abandon genetic engineering to better ourselves.

Whenever this argument comes up I think of a quote one of my professors used to always say:

"You might as well shoot for the moon, because if you miss, you'll land amongst the stars"


P.S.
John Irenicus was the most bad-ass villain of any video game...ever.

P.S.*2
There are already ways you can boot your Intelligence (Well....measured intelligence at least) substantially with different life-style modifications. Meditation and vigorous exercise has helped me.

JonIrenicus
03-11-2009, 02:25 AM
It will most likely create some social caste-like problems, however, no way will those problems be acute enough that we should abandon genetic engineering to better ourselves.

...

P.S.
John Irenicus was the most bad-ass villain of any video game...ever.

....



Yes, yes he was. Too few people played that game, know that this is a name of POWER !!!!!

.... (tucks in dreams of power)


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hk0sOGVSAP4

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=22Ki7yp2XL0


on the genetic enhancements and designer babies type arguments, this is where I am a radical. I am virtually 100% for, even with the negatives. I used to tutor kids, and saw in high school and beyond the effects of the genetic lottery. There is no fairness in how ability is distributed, after a certain threshold it is FAR more about what you put into something, but below that mark, people who work far harder with far more drive are often left by the waist side in getting a certain result because they were not gifted with being as "smart" as the other.

If we had the capacity to bring the hardware up to par so that they could better excel in the areas they wish to excel in, I am all for it.

Hence my radical stance, but I never was a fan of being a slave to nature and chance. Certainly not if it was within my power to change it.

bjkeefe
03-11-2009, 02:49 AM
... often left by the waist side ...

Is that like love handles or something?

;^)

Left by the wayside is the idiom you want, I think. Although in the context of your post, left by the waste side would be a pretty good pun.

Left, by the way, 'sides, and
incorrigibly nitpickingly yours,

bjkeefe
03-11-2009, 02:59 AM
But to answer your question more seriously, I am certainly not opposed to genetic enhancements on principle. I think it is something that we need to start talking about now, because it will be available soon, and people will look to take advantage of it, legal or not.

This is a good thread, but I haven't really thought through my position on this very carefully. The most immediate concerns that come to mind:

1. Who is responsible when a particular genetic modification (GM) appears to work; e.g., those with it are appreciably smarter, but then they all go insane or get brain cancer or early onset dementia at age 40?

2. Assuming that GM will be expensive, at least at the start, how do we deal with the increased social divide between the haves and have nots if all the richies can amp up their progeny compared to the poors? Whether or not one's answer is "Let the market decide!!!1!", there is no doubt going to be a ginormous political battle about "fairness" and "level playing fields."

3. Take #2 another step further: what happens when some large percentage of people are opting for GM for their kids, and the procedures are cheap, and there is a minority that doesn't want to, but it becomes obvious that the GMs are so much better that the non-GMs are getting left in the dust. Will it become mandatory to have a certain minimum of GM (a la mandatory vaccinations and minimum number of years of schooling, say)? What if that minority starts demanding to be taken care of by the GMs when it becomes clear they can't compete?

JonIrenicus
03-11-2009, 03:45 AM
My guess is that initially this will reveal its head in the form of selecting embryos that have a higher frequency of desired traits. All that would need to be done here is catalogue and get a cross reference on which alleles/combo of alleles garner a higher chance for X.

Where X is whatever you desire to have more of. Non random selection. As things get more advanced though, then things will start getting dicier. Let the brave new world come!