Religious Discourse In Relation To New Reproductive Technologies

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Religious viewpoint
In order to understand a religious discourse in relation to new reproductive technologies, a key concern is centred on the debate around ‘at what point’ is an embryo considered a human being?
Many people’s views and opinions about reproductive technologies stem from their conclusions regarding abortion (Evans 2010). Put simply, Evans (2010) argues that there is an inclination for religious people to oppose to RGT and their applications of them, more than secular people. Traditionally, a Christian view is to protect the foetus as a person from the moment of fertilisation, with the view that this is the point of the beginning of a human life. Therefore, a conventional Christian perspective considers new reproductive technologies …show more content…

Human genetic engineering, what was once considered a futuristic possibility and in the realm of science fiction (Evans 2010) is now becoming a mechanism to alter the genetic characteristics of an individual that will now be passed through the germ line, from one generation to the next. We are essentially changing the genetic makeup of the human species (Evans 2010). With IVF and HGE, is it morally correct to make radical genetic selections and changes that inevitably will influence the lives of future generations?

Veatch, Haddad and English (2010) argue that this is the most fundamental issue that faces reproductive technologies, whether or not interfering with ‘the genetic and birth process is ‘playing God’’ in an unacceptable manner. They further state that the rapid developing reproductive technologies have the potential to change the nature of the human species and the process of reproduction (Veatch, Haddad and English, 2010), which can be considered to extend beyond what ‘humans should be permitted to do’. Thus, the extent to which humans can manipulate genes should take into consideration the ethical points previously addressed in this essay and should be controlled and managed through a standardised …show more content…

In an unregulated environment these issues present serious threats to the fabric of society.
Regulation by it’s nature is a framework to define, protect and preserve ethical practice across society and it’s engagement within itself.

Ireland in comparison to other countries such as United States and the United Kingdom are slow regarding the institutionalisation of bioethics, public debate and regulation surrounding RGT. This may be linked to generations of religious influence of the Catholic Church on society in addition to the Irish state’s preoccupation with establishing a ‘pro-life’ ethos while many EU countries were solidifying formalisation and regulation of bioethics in the early 1990s (Conrad 2001, Smyth 2005 as cited in McDonnell and Allison 2006). However, despite the decline in the authority of the Catholic Church in Ireland, there seems to be an apprehension about opening up the bioethical debate (McDonnell and Allison

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