The Pros And Cons Of Genetic Engineering

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From the moment we began to unlock the secrets of the genome, the complete set of DNA including all genes and understand the effects that genes can have on human health, the idea of modifying the human genome – hence controlling these effects – has held both potential and peril. Visions of a bright future free from the sufferings of genetic disease contrast starkly with darker fears of a genetically-engineered “New World”.
As society becomes more and more aware of this technique, there have been more questions about the moral implications of genetic engineering. The first time I heard about genetic engineering was when I heard NPR reporting on the advances of the scientists since the inception of CRISPR, the most prominent way to edit genes. …show more content…

The author’s assertion that “ future individuals have the right to an unmodified human genome”(Unknown 12) and that “the child’s very identity is altered”(Unknown 11) is extremely useful because it sheds insight on the difficult problem that many children will face if genetic engineering is constantly used in humans. The children will be partly artificial and “the individual will realize that he or she is essentially a test subject—knowledge that might be disturbing…This knowledge will become a part of the individual’s identity, and it is unethical to place such a burden on him or her.”(Unknown 12) I believe that this is the crux of the matter. An unborn child unable to make decisions could be subjected to the most artificial treatment known to man, because changing a person’s genes changes who they are. I agree that the parents should have full knowledge of everything involved with gene editing, and should be cleared to give consent, because a parent must act in the best interest of the …show more content…

In utilitarianism, an action is considered moral if it maximizes total benefit and reduces suffering. In this sense, gene editing is moral, because it is conceivable that CRISPR can cure diseases or grow healthier crops that are drought or pest resistant. The trick is when to draw the line. Few would argue against using CRISPR to treat cancer, but what about chronic diseases, or disabilities? If CRISPR can treat alzheimer's disease, should it be used for obesity, which can lead to so many life-threatening diseases? Some would argue that obesity should be treated by CRISPR, because it can prevent those diseases. Others would say that some would want this treatment for cosmetic

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