Although this may seem like a fabulous idea at first, I will argue that it should not be morally permissible for arenas to use genetic engineering to give their children desirable traits because it will leave our society divided and create extensive unfairness among all. I will begin my argument by defining what is genetic engineering and what it means for something to be morally permissible. After contemplating how any one thing can be determined morally permissible by our entire society, will move on to discuss the ideas of Cam in his article about problems with enhancement.
I will argue that although he may bring valid points to the table, the issues that he believes in are not the most important ones to be discussed. I will then proceed to argue that genetic engineering should only be used for medical purposes. Next, I will discuss the unfairness that genetic engineering would create and how our society may become divided. Genetic engineering is the science of manipulating the genes of a plant or animal to produce a desired result (Merriam-Webster). This definition is reasonably straightforward and the idea is easy to understand.
Defining what it means for something to be morally permissible may not be so simple. If something is permissible it means that it is remitted or allowed. For something to be moral, it has to be in agreement with the idea of what is right versus what is wrong. So how do we define what is moral? Is it possible to make a distinction of things that are morally permissible with the consensus of our society? Surely not, because everyone has different morals and values that they believe in.
Therefore it may not be absolutely correct to say whether or not genetic engineering is morally permissible, given the varying values of our society; however, will continue to argue that genetic engineering should not be considered morally remissive. In the article titled “Is There a Problem with Enhancement,” Cam argues that the most prominent issues with genetic engineering are the fact that we cannot ensure its safety and that our imaginations aren’t broad enough to be designers. I disagree that these arguments are the most important because they do not focus on the issue of the right or wrong of genetic engineering itself.
Instead, these ideas are mere excuses as to why we should not use genetic enhancement. We should not turn down new advancements in science simply because we do not know if it is safe. Obviously genetic engineering would be thoroughly tested before it is used on humans to ensure its safety, just as all other advancements in science are. Therefore Gamma’s argument that we should not use genetic enhancements because of safety issues is not a good one. If we deny new ideas simply because we are not sure that they are safe, we would end up living in fear of all new things.
Furthermore, his argument that we would not be sufficient designers is contradicting to his argument that parents should only be able to give their children basic properties. I believe that genetic engineering should only be used for medical purposes. For example, parents who find out that their child has Down syndrome should be able to fix that child’s genes so that they would be healthy. Doing so would be in the best interest of the child. However, if genetic engineering is available to all people and parents are able to create model babies, this may potentially hurt the child in the long run because it creates unfairness to the child.
It is unfair to the children because they are not given the freedom to become their own person. Instead, they are modeled to be whatever their parents desire and are raised to be exactly hat. Not only would it be unfair to the children who are modified, but also to the people who do not have the means to modify their children. Just as the best medicines and treatments are expensive today, it is fair to say that genetic engineering would be very expensive. Therefore, the rich would create perfect children while the less fortunate would be limited to naturally created children.
Undoubtedly, the genetically modified children would express their superiority to the normal children, which would put the normal children at risk for bullying and also give the modified children unfair advantages in school, extracurricular activities, and in the career field. Ultimately, this would create two very distinct social classes and create tension in our society. If genetic engineering was considered morally permissible and parents began designing their children, our society would become a split between those who are genetically engineered and those who are not.
The genetically engineered would become the superior class due to their capabilities, while the nor-I-engineered would become the inferior class due to their lack of monetary means or their lack of ability. It may be fair to assume that those who were not genetically engineered would give up on their dreams to achieve greatness because they accepted the fact that someone who was engineered held a better chance of getting the job or whatever else their aspirations may be.