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Designer Babies.....ugh, this is scary.

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steph72276

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http://cosmos.bcst.yahoo.com/up/player/popup/?rn=3906861&cl=12306935&ch=4226723&src=news

Anyone else find it scary that within a few years, people will be able to choose their baby''s hair color/eye color/height and other traits? I know I would never consider it. My child is a great mix of both my husband and me and I wouldn''t want to alter that in any way. I do understand how it can benefit us health-wise such as altering disease carrying genes, but where does it stop ethically?
 

TravelingGal

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Date: 3/3/2009 5:17:46 PM
Author:steph72276
http://cosmos.bcst.yahoo.com/up/player/popup/?rn=3906861&cl=12306935&ch=4226723&src=news

Anyone else find it scary that within a few years, people will be able to choose their baby''s hair color/eye color/height and other traits? I know I would never consider it. My child is a great mix of both my husband and me and I wouldn''t want to alter that in any way. I do understand how it can benefit us health-wise such as altering disease carrying genes, but where does it stop ethically?
I wouldn''t want that...I didn''t even want to find out the sex!

Although...if someone asked me if I could ensure a baby who didn''t have my feet or TGuy''s nose...well...
 

steph72276

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I hear ya, TGal....wish my son got hubby''s tanned skin, but the poor guy is pasty white like his mommy. But still, I wouldn''t want to change him for anything.
 

TravelingGal

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Date: 3/3/2009 5:30:11 PM
Author: steph72276
I hear ya, TGal....wish my son got hubby''s tanned skin, but the poor guy is pasty white like his mommy. But still, I wouldn''t want to change him for anything.
Yeah, me too, since Amelia got Tguy''s feet and not his nose!
 

FrekeChild

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It doesn''t bother me...then again we''re not going to have biological children. I think as a disease preventative it''s an ok idea, for the physical attributes, not so cool. Either way though it doesn''t matter to me.
 

AllieGator

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In most cases, I find this disturbing. I''ve always thought one of the pluses of biological children is that they are like you, and their father--it''s what makes them yours.

In cases of people wanting to avoid certain diseases, however, I can understand it. But in most cases, I don''t like it one bit.
 

HollyS

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Date: 3/3/2009 5:59:25 PM
Author: trillionaire
sounds like a good place for eugenics to start...
Yes. And that''s why it does matter.
 

beebrisk

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Date: 3/3/2009 5:17:46 PM
Author:steph72276
http://cosmos.bcst.yahoo.com/up/player/popup/?rn=3906861&cl=12306935&ch=4226723&src=news


Anyone else find it scary that within a few years, people will be able to choose their baby''s hair color/eye color/height and other traits? I know I would never consider it. My child is a great mix of both my husband and me and I wouldn''t want to alter that in any way. I do understand how it can benefit us health-wise such as altering disease carrying genes, but where does it stop ethically?

It IS scary.

But once you allow the ultimate in scary ie: killing an unborn child, it doesn''t stop ethically.

This is simply another manifestation of how "unethical" and dare I say, immoral, we really are.
 

TravelingGal

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Date: 3/3/2009 6:16:01 PM
Author: beebrisk

Date: 3/3/2009 5:17:46 PM
Author:steph72276
http://cosmos.bcst.yahoo.com/up/player/popup/?rn=3906861&cl=12306935&ch=4226723&src=news


Anyone else find it scary that within a few years, people will be able to choose their baby''s hair color/eye color/height and other traits? I know I would never consider it. My child is a great mix of both my husband and me and I wouldn''t want to alter that in any way. I do understand how it can benefit us health-wise such as altering disease carrying genes, but where does it stop ethically?

It IS scary.

But once you allow the ultimate in scary ie: killing an unborn child, it doesn''t stop ethically.

This is simply another manifestation of how ''unethical'' and dare I say, immoral, we really are.
Gah.
 

Brown.Eyed.Girl

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Date: 3/3/2009 5:17:46 PM
Author:steph72276
http://cosmos.bcst.yahoo.com/up/player/popup/?rn=3906861&cl=12306935&ch=4226723&src=news


Anyone else find it scary that within a few years, people will be able to choose their baby''s hair color/eye color/height and other traits? I know I would never consider it. My child is a great mix of both my husband and me and I wouldn''t want to alter that in any way. I do understand how it can benefit us health-wise such as altering disease carrying genes, but where does it stop ethically?
Very Gattaca

 

icekid

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Date: 3/3/2009 7:26:36 PM
Author: Brown.Eyed.Girl


Date: 3/3/2009 5:17:46 PM
Author:steph72276
http://cosmos.bcst.yahoo.com/up/player/popup/?rn=3906861&cl=12306935&ch=4226723&src=news


Anyone else find it scary that within a few years, people will be able to choose their baby's hair color/eye color/height and other traits? I know I would never consider it. My child is a great mix of both my husband and me and I wouldn't want to alter that in any way. I do understand how it can benefit us health-wise such as altering disease carrying genes, but where does it stop ethically?
Very Gattaca

Love that movie! I think it's ok... otherwise my kid has no chance of looking anything like me, my hubby's dark hair and eyes will dominate
seriously.. just kidding. I agree that this is really the wrong direction to move. I can't believe this is coming in 6 months, or 2 years! scary.
 

Hudson_Hawk

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There''s a thing called "Natural Selection" or "Survival of the Fittest" genetic altering of humans is wrong on so many levels. If you''re going to do this, why not clone while you''re at it?
 

trillionaire

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Date: 3/3/2009 8:16:33 PM
Author: Hudson_Hawk
There''s a thing called ''Natural Selection'' or ''Survival of the Fittest'' genetic altering of humans is wrong on so many levels. If you''re going to do this, why not clone while you''re at it?
while I don''t agree with genetic altering, we should all keep in mind that scientific medicine, surgeries, etc, are all counter to nature. People that would have been ''selected'' out of the gene pool are saved as children, infants and adults, routinely in our society. (organ transplantation, emergency c-sections, the list goes on and on) That is just to say that science is a slippery slope, but part of a continuum. It is not black and white, and to pretend so is disingenuous.
 

trillionaire

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Date: 3/3/2009 6:16:01 PM
Author: beebrisk
Date: 3/3/2009 5:17:46 PM

Author:steph72276

http://cosmos.bcst.yahoo.com/up/player/popup/?rn=3906861&cl=12306935&ch=4226723&src=news



Anyone else find it scary that within a few years, people will be able to choose their baby's hair color/eye color/height and other traits? I know I would never consider it. My child is a great mix of both my husband and me and I wouldn't want to alter that in any way. I do understand how it can benefit us health-wise such as altering disease carrying genes, but where does it stop ethically?


It IS scary.


But once you allow the ultimate in scary ie: killing an unborn child, it doesn't stop ethically.


This is simply another manifestation of how 'unethical' and dare I say, immoral, we really are.

LOL @ how you bring this into every discussion. Have you ever killed a bug? Then you have killed a life. A small cluster of cells. The self righteousness. No one is perfect BeeBrisk, we are all doing the best that we can. Seriously.

please, let's stay ON topic, not do abortion part 75. The subject is worthy enough of it's own discussion.
 

Brown.Eyed.Girl

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Date: 3/3/2009 11:27:20 PM
Author: trillionaire
Date: 3/3/2009 6:16:01 PM

Author: beebrisk

Date: 3/3/2009 5:17:46 PM


Author:steph72276


http://cosmos.bcst.yahoo.com/up/player/popup/?rn=3906861&cl=12306935&ch=4226723&src=news






Anyone else find it scary that within a few years, people will be able to choose their baby''s hair color/eye color/height and other traits? I know I would never consider it. My child is a great mix of both my husband and me and I wouldn''t want to alter that in any way. I do understand how it can benefit us health-wise such as altering disease carrying genes, but where does it stop ethically?



It IS scary.



But once you allow the ultimate in scary ie: killing an unborn child, it doesn''t stop ethically.



This is simply another manifestation of how ''unethical'' and dare I say, immoral, we really are.


LOL @ how you bring this into every discussion. Have you ever killed a bug? Then you have killed a life. A small cluster of cells. The self righteousness. No one is perfect BeeBrisk, we are all doing the best that we can. Seriously.


please, let''s stay ON topic, not do abortion part 75. The subject is worthy enough of it''s own discussion.

Ditto. I think this thread was not meant as an abortion discussion. I think the topic is really interesting as is- and shows how far we''ve come in terms of science.

Personally I support this if it can be and will be used for the purposes of correction of medical conditions.

IceKid, Gattaca was an awesome movie! Totally underrated....
 

beebrisk

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Date: 3/3/2009 11:27:20 PM
Author: trillionaire
Date: 3/3/2009 6:16:01 PM

Author: beebrisk

Date: 3/3/2009 5:17:46 PM


Author:steph72276


http://cosmos.bcst.yahoo.com/up/player/popup/?rn=3906861&cl=12306935&ch=4226723&src=news




Anyone else find it scary that within a few years, people will be able to choose their baby''s hair color/eye color/height and other traits? I know I would never consider it. My child is a great mix of both my husband and me and I wouldn''t want to alter that in any way. I do understand how it can benefit us health-wise such as altering disease carrying genes, but where does it stop ethically?



It IS scary.



But once you allow the ultimate in scary ie: killing an unborn child, it doesn''t stop ethically.



This is simply another manifestation of how ''unethical'' and dare I say, immoral, we really are.


LOL @ how you bring this into every discussion. Have you ever killed a bug? Then you have killed a life. A small cluster of cells. The self righteousness. No one is perfect BeeBrisk, we are all doing the best that we can. Seriously.


please, let''s stay ON topic, not do abortion part 75. The subject is worthy enough of it''s own discussion.
Nope. Didn''t go off topic. The question of ethics was raised and referring to abortion was WELL within context. Abortion, cloning, "designer" babies...it''s all about playing God. The ethics questions are entirely justified and dead serious.

Sorry, if it''s not exactly what you wanted to hear. But as far as I know, we are ALL entitled to post our opinion here and I''m not interested in being admonished for expressing mine.
 

steph72276

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Date: 3/3/2009 11:04:50 PM
Author: trillionaire
Date: 3/3/2009 8:16:33 PM

Author: Hudson_Hawk

There''s a thing called ''Natural Selection'' or ''Survival of the Fittest'' genetic altering of humans is wrong on so many levels. If you''re going to do this, why not clone while you''re at it?

while I don''t agree with genetic altering, we should all keep in mind that scientific medicine, surgeries, etc, are all counter to nature. People that would have been ''selected'' out of the gene pool are saved as children, infants and adults, routinely in our society. (organ transplantation, emergency c-sections, the list goes on and on) That is just to say that science is a slippery slope, but part of a continuum. It is not black and white, and to pretend so is disingenuous.
That''s a great point, trillionaire. I do think it this could be great in the area of disease prevention, it''s just the physical attribute changes that parents can make that is very strange to me. I wouldn''t want my son to look like anyone but my husband and I, but I know some who would probably do this to make them look a certain way.
 

Hudson_Hawk

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Date: 3/3/2009 11:04:50 PM
Author: trillionaire
Date: 3/3/2009 8:16:33 PM

Author: Hudson_Hawk

There''s a thing called ''Natural Selection'' or ''Survival of the Fittest'' genetic altering of humans is wrong on so many levels. If you''re going to do this, why not clone while you''re at it?

while I don''t agree with genetic altering, we should all keep in mind that scientific medicine, surgeries, etc, are all counter to nature. People that would have been ''selected'' out of the gene pool are saved as children, infants and adults, routinely in our society. (organ transplantation, emergency c-sections, the list goes on and on) That is just to say that science is a slippery slope, but part of a continuum. It is not black and white, and to pretend so is disingenuous.
I agree that medicine and science work against natural selection. However I think genetic altering such as this could have a much more dramatic affect on the human race long-term than medical assistance during a complicated birth. The fact is, we don''t know what will happen if we start messing with our children at a genetic level.
 

Lynnie

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I saw this on my local news. I think it''s pretty ludicrous that people would actually wanna pick and choose the physical attributes of their - um - spawn. But even the fact that it can help to prevent diseases poses an ethical issue... all of these "designer babies" must be implanted via IVF, correct?
I''ve worked with people with devastating diseases - Cerebal Palsey, mental retardation, Muscular Distrophy... most are delightful, productive, well-loved people... I don''t know. For a healthy couple who can get pregnant without any problem to go IVF even just to prevent diseases seems wrong to me.
Trillionaire brought up a good point about the advances in healthcare and the moral issues there.

About the ethics of the disease-prevention notion, I pose a question: Can we afford to live in a world without people such as: Michael J Fox, JFK, Troy Aikman, Beethoven, Alice Cooper, Calvin Coolidge, Einstein, Newton, Ben Franklin (the list goes on and on... google "famous people with disabilities")? Just because they have diseases/syndromes that may be *undesirable*, doesn''t mean they cant be a productive member of society (or a genius, for that matter).

Side note - I agree that this subject and abortion are two different animals. No where in the OP did the word abortion come up. The morality of "designer babies" is a different discussion than the morality of abortion, or the morality of doctor-assisted suicide, or the morality of sex before marriage. All are apples to oranges, IMO.
 

Hudson_Hawk

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Date: 3/4/2009 9:04:36 AM
Author: Lynnie
I saw this on my local news. I think it''s pretty ludicrous that people would actually wanna pick and choose the physical attributes of their - um - spawn. But even the fact that it can help to prevent diseases poses an ethical issue... all of these ''designer babies'' must be implanted via IVF, correct?

I''ve worked with people with devastating diseases - Cerebal Palsey, mental retardation, Muscular Distrophy... most are delightful, productive, well-loved people... I don''t know. For a healthy couple who can get pregnant without any problem to go IVF even just to prevent diseases seems wrong to me.

Trillionaire brought up a good point about the advances in healthcare and the moral issues there.


About the ethics of the disease-prevention notion, I pose a question: Can we afford to live in a world without people such as: Michael J Fox, JFK, Troy Aikman, Beethoven, Alice Cooper, Calvin Coolidge, Einstein, Newton, Ben Franklin (the list goes on and on... google ''famous people with disabilities'')? Just because they have diseases/syndromes that may be *undesirable*, doesn''t mean they cant be a productive member of society (or a genius, for that matter).


Side note - I agree that this subject and abortion are two different animals. No where in the OP did the word abortion come up. The morality of ''designer babies'' is a different discussion than the morality of abortion, or the morality of doctor-assisted suicide, or the morality of sex before marriage. All are apples to oranges, IMO.
I 100% agree with you Lynnie.
 

steph72276

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Date: 3/4/2009 9:04:36 AM
Author: Lynnie
I saw this on my local news. I think it''s pretty ludicrous that people would actually wanna pick and choose the physical attributes of their - um - spawn. But even the fact that it can help to prevent diseases poses an ethical issue... all of these ''designer babies'' must be implanted via IVF, correct?

I''ve worked with people with devastating diseases - Cerebal Palsey, mental retardation, Muscular Distrophy... most are delightful, productive, well-loved people... I don''t know. For a healthy couple who can get pregnant without any problem to go IVF even just to prevent diseases seems wrong to me.

Trillionaire brought up a good point about the advances in healthcare and the moral issues there.


About the ethics of the disease-prevention notion, I pose a question: Can we afford to live in a world without people such as: Michael J Fox, JFK, Troy Aikman, Beethoven, Alice Cooper, Calvin Coolidge, Einstein, Newton, Ben Franklin (the list goes on and on... google ''famous people with disabilities'')? Just because they have diseases/syndromes that may be *undesirable*, doesn''t mean they cant be a productive member of society (or a genius, for that matter).


Side note - I agree that this subject and abortion are two different animals. No where in the OP did the word abortion come up. The morality of ''designer babies'' is a different discussion than the morality of abortion, or the morality of doctor-assisted suicide, or the morality of sex before marriage. All are apples to oranges, IMO.
Very well said, I agree with all of the above.
 

geckodani

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I was going to reference Gattaca as well!

This concept disturbs me on so many levels. I even have an uneasy feeling about IVF. Although I have no problems with those couples that have chosen this route, for me it feels too much like cooking in God''s kitchen.

As trillionaire pointed out, natural selection does have its place. Sometimes I think science goes too far.

This would be one of those instances!
 

JSM

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This is a pretty tough subject, but I don't see this happening on a huge level.

1) Even if the method were perfected, they are either a) selecting for traits by sifting through a number of different embryos, or b) altering genes in the early embryo, neither of which will really guarantee anything. So many genetic changes occur during development; who is to say those genes for blonde hair won't be silenced during embryogenesis? Mutations can occur spontaneously. Hell, even during life! I had dark hair my first 4 years of life, blond the next ten, then it got darker again. Environmental factors, weather, food intake, nutrients, all will alter phenotypes. There are NO guarantees.

2) Yes, IVF is required, and is going to be a VERY expensive procedure. I'm going to guess that most people are still going to conceive the old fashioned way.


Scientists do a great deal of genetic manipulation for a lot of animals. Assuming you aren't messing with essential genes, in most cases mice, C. elegans, drosophila, sheep, etc, life normal lifespans. It hasn't been done in humans but who is to say there won't be consequences there no one anticipated? Unlikely, but possible. Humans are complicated but do not by any means have the most complicated genetics or the largest numbers of genes. I think screening for debilitating diseases may a great way to get some harmful and deadly genes out of the population.

But, like so many things, just because we CAN doesn't mean we should. It's a very slippery slope.

I'm not someone who has a problem expressing genes from one organism in another (I've done it, actually). It's all just amino acids coding proteins. But something doesn't sit right with me when you want to select blue eyes or dark hair. It doesn't seem right.
 

trillionaire

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Date: 3/4/2009 10:15:38 AM
Author: jsm
This is a pretty tough subject, but I don't see this happening on a huge level.


1) Even if the method were perfected, they are either a) selecting for traits by sifting through a number of different embryos, or b) altering genes in the early embryo, neither of which will really guarantee anything. So many genetic changes occur during development; who is to say those genes for blonde hair won't be silenced during embryogenesis? Mutations can occur spontaneously. Hell, even during life! I had dark hair my first 4 years of life, blond the next ten, then it got darker again. Environmental factors, weather, food intake, nutrients, all will alter phenotypes. There are NO guarantees.


2) Yes, IVF is required, and is going to be a VERY expensive procedure. I'm going to guess that most people are still going to conceive the old fashioned way.



Scientists do a great deal of genetic manipulation for a lot of animals. Assuming you aren't messing with essential genes, in most cases mice, C. elegans, drosophila, sheep, etc, life normal lifespans. It hasn't been done in humans but who is to say there won't be consequences there no one anticipated? Unlikely, but possible. Humans are complicated but do not by any means have the most complicated genetics or the largest numbers of genes. I think screening for debilitating diseases may a great way to get some harmful and deadly genes out of the population.


But, like so many things, just because we CAN doesn't mean we should. It's a very slippery slope.


I'm not someone who has a problem expressing genes from one organism in another (I've done it, actually). It's all just amino acids coding proteins. But something doesn't sit right with me when you want to select blue eyes or dark hair. It doesn't seem right.
It is interesting that you bring up the expense of the procedure. While I agree that this will probably never be a huge portion of the population who can afford to do these types of procedures, it can play out like a class divide. Those with the most money would be the 'healthiest', by self selecting out of disease and disability, and could potentially be selected for distinguishable phenotypic traits. (ugh, are we back at eugenics???) I see this being less of an issue of what people look like, per se, but perhaps an emergent class stigma to certain diseases and disabilities?

And what if we weren't determining eye color, what if the design concept was to short circuit genes that lead to tendencies for mood disorders, psychoses or obesity? What are we okay with? And what are we saying to communities of affected people when their unique character traits are being willfully expunged from the gene pool?
 

beebrisk

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Date: 3/4/2009 9:04:36 AM
Author: Lynnie


Side note - I agree that this subject and abortion are two different animals. No where in the OP did the word abortion come up. The morality of ''designer babies'' is a different discussion than the morality of abortion, or the morality of doctor-assisted suicide, or the morality of sex before marriage. All are apples to oranges, IMO.
Actually, that''s the farthest thing from the truth. Unless you look at it from a purely relativistic point of view.

Morals don''t "change" according to the circumstance. That''s the whole point, actually. A moral code is a compass-a standard-by which we choose to live. Keep changing the "morals" or apply different ones to different circumstances and before you know it, anything and everything is right and nothing can ever be considered wrong.

Thus, my original response. I choose to view eugenics, cloning, designer babies and abortion under the same light. To me, the standard by which to judge one is the same for all the above.

So yes, relativistically speaking you "can" change the morals according to the experience. But then you have nothing to use as a standard by which to judge even your own behavior. At that point you must also come to terms with the fact that any opinion on the subject is just as right,or just as wrong as yours.

Personally, I choose not to live with that ambiguity over my head.
 

neatfreak

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Date: 3/4/2009 11:06:52 AM
Author: beebrisk
Date: 3/4/2009 9:04:36 AM

Author: Lynnie



Side note - I agree that this subject and abortion are two different animals. No where in the OP did the word abortion come up. The morality of 'designer babies' is a different discussion than the morality of abortion, or the morality of doctor-assisted suicide, or the morality of sex before marriage. All are apples to oranges, IMO.

Actually, that's the farthest thing from the truth. Unless you look at it from a purely relativistic point of view.


Morals don't 'change' according to the circumstance. That's the whole point, actually. A moral code is a compass-a standard-by which we choose to live. Keep changing the 'morals' or apply different ones to different circumstances and before you know it, anything and everything is right and nothing can ever be considered wrong.


Thus, my original response. I choose to view eugenics, cloning, designer babies and abortion under the same light. To me, the standard by which to judge one is the same for all the above.


So yes, relativistically speaking you 'can' change the morals according to the experience. But then you have nothing to use as a standard by which to judge even your own behavior. At that point you must also come to terms with the fact that any opinion on the subject is just as right,or just as wrong as yours.


Personally, I choose not to live with that ambiguity over my head.
Well lets at least try to stay on topic here. Eugenics and Designer Babies.
 

Hudson_Hawk

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Date: 3/4/2009 11:02:47 AM
Author: trillionaire
Date: 3/4/2009 10:15:38 AM

Author: jsm

This is a pretty tough subject, but I don''t see this happening on a huge level.



1) Even if the method were perfected, they are either a) selecting for traits by sifting through a number of different embryos, or b) altering genes in the early embryo, neither of which will really guarantee anything. So many genetic changes occur during development; who is to say those genes for blonde hair won''t be silenced during embryogenesis? Mutations can occur spontaneously. Hell, even during life! I had dark hair my first 4 years of life, blond the next ten, then it got darker again. Environmental factors, weather, food intake, nutrients, all will alter phenotypes. There are NO guarantees.



2) Yes, IVF is required, and is going to be a VERY expensive procedure. I''m going to guess that most people are still going to conceive the old fashioned way.




Scientists do a great deal of genetic manipulation for a lot of animals. Assuming you aren''t messing with essential genes, in most cases mice, C. elegans, drosophila, sheep, etc, life normal lifespans. It hasn''t been done in humans but who is to say there won''t be consequences there no one anticipated? Unlikely, but possible. Humans are complicated but do not by any means have the most complicated genetics or the largest numbers of genes. I think screening for debilitating diseases may a great way to get some harmful and deadly genes out of the population.



But, like so many things, just because we CAN doesn''t mean we should. It''s a very slippery slope.



I''m not someone who has a problem expressing genes from one organism in another (I''ve done it, actually). It''s all just amino acids coding proteins. But something doesn''t sit right with me when you want to select blue eyes or dark hair. It doesn''t seem right.

It is interesting that you bring up the expense of the procedure. While I agree that this will probably never be a huge portion of the population who can afford to do these types of procedures, it can play out like a class divide. Those with the most money would be the ''healthiest'', by self selecting out of disease and disability, and could potentially be selected for distinguishable phenotypic traits. (ugh, are we back at eugenics???) I see this being less of an issue of what people look like, per se, but perhaps an emergent class stigma to certain diseases and disabilities?


And what if we weren''t determining eye color, what if the design concept was to short circuit genes that lead to tendencies for mood disorders, psychoses or obesity? What are we okay with? And what are we saying to communities of affected people when their unique character traits are being willfully expunged from the gene pool?
Aryan race anyone??
 

trillionaire

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Date: 3/4/2009 11:17:28 AM
Author: neatfreak

Well lets at least try to stay on topic here. Eugenics and Designer Babies.
Ditto.

According to Wiki, designer babies and eugenics are basically synonymous.

"Eugenics is a scientific field involving the controlled breeding of humans in order to achieve desirable traits in future generations"

Would invoking this term hurt the science behind 'designer babies' more than it would help? Science often advances through serendipity and unexpected ways. Do our visceral initial reactions impede science unnecessarily, or merely apply brakes so that we proceed with caution?

ETA: didn't the spartans allegedly throw away weak and unfit/sick babies? LOL, I guess nothing is new, under the sun!
 
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