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Breeding the perfect person

It’s immoral to choose which genes our offspring should have. We should accept the traits our kids our naturally born with.

Eugenics comes from the idea that some people are genetically superior than others. It aims at improving the genetic quality of humans by altering their hereditary traits.

The ideology is closely influenced by Nazi Germany roots where the Aryan race was promoted, and mandatory sterilization took place. Several groups including the disabled, mentally ill, and socially disadvantaged were prohibited from reproducing.

With recent advancements, eugenics has become a controversial issue since there are clashing beliefs about whether or not genetic engineering is right or wrong.

It eliminates the undesirable traits in individuals, so that future offspring will carry more desirable traits.

This is wrong because eugenics doesn’t guarantee a healthier offspring or higher intelligence each time. Instead, it is a practice that could easily be abused to enhance physical attributes.

Eugenicists argue that the process can prevent people from inheriting diseases, which will eliminate suffering entirely. But it’s unrealistic to assume that all diseases can be avoided.

If a genetic tweak is done incorrectly, it could lead to difficult problems in the future. Since the procedure is done before birth, the fetus will be more at risk for prenatal death.

Sarah Knapton said in a 2015 Telegraph article that a team in China conducted a procedure where 86 embryos were injected with a type of protein. For the gene modification to take place, the team left the embryos of adult cells and animal cells untouched for two days.

“They found a number of unexpected mutations in genes which should not have been affected by the technique,” according to Knapton.

With multiple mutations in animal cells, it is clear that eugenicists are incapable of promising parents disease-free babies. Eugenics also makes the assumption that people with diseases or mental illnesses are considered unacceptable in society and that their traits are “undesirable.”

Boosting people’s intelligence may come off as beneficial, but eugenicists still have a lot of research to do.

Thousands of people with high IQ scores in China contributed their DNA, according to evolutionary psychologist, Geoffrey Miller, in an article published in the 2013 science magazine Edge.

It allows Chinese couples to select between their fertilized eggs, so that they have a better chance of choosing a smarter baby.

“This method … might allow IQ within every Chinese family to increase by 5 to 15 IQ points per generation. After a couple of generations it would be game over for Western global competitiveness,” Miller said.

Miller’s statistics are debatable because there is little scientific evidence behind his statement. It also advocates the idea that Americans should fear China based on the fact that they are of higher quality.

Eugenics allows a couple to edit their offspring’s physical attributes like eye color, height and body structure. Parents should not be allowed to control this.

When it comes to physical characteristics, the procedure is less complex than editing an offspring’s mental abilities.

This means that a majority of the genetic modification being completed would be based on physical enhancement, rather than improving health and intelligence.

Richard Lynn wrote, in a eugenics reassessment book, that there is a widespread lack of understanding about eugenics. He stated how it’s doubtful whether it would be desirable to attempt to strengthen the characteristic

“Physical beauty would not seem to serve any useful social purpose and seem designed to promote the well-being of individuals,” Lynn wrote.

It’s immoral to control human nature, especially when human lives are at risk.

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  • opinion telescope logo: Telescope Staff/The Telescope | All Rights Reserved
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