Next stop Gattacca....?

Discussion in 'Et Cetera, Et Cetera' started by dong20, Jun 19, 2006.

  1. dong20

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    This is all over the news here today.

    I found the movie emotive, interesting and chillingly plausible. There has been some debate here lately on the possibility of a genetic base for Homosexuality so this seems quite apposite.

    It's not a new question but has clearly come a bit closer...

    If such a test were to offer, now or in the future parents (or doctors?) the option to detect and selectively abort an embryo based not only the presence of physical or mental disabilities; but also, for example, latent Homo/Hetero/Bisexuality, or other traits such as ADD/alcoholism/obesity. Even, perhaps also other more basic physical characteristics such eye colour, height etc my question here is...where would you draw the line?

    A BBC article and more info:

    Embryo test 'offers parents hope'

    Test Q&A
     
  2. mjfriel

    mjfriel New Member

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    Personally, and I know there are people out there that will use this technology, I would treat it the same as the technology that allows parents to see what sex their child is. Many choose not to know and wait for the 'surprise' and I can only hope that future parents will follow the same course. It does not bear thinking about if people can choose what they want in a child. Only the opening of small minds can prevent the choosing of babies becoming the norm. I am ginger and people have said to me either in malice or in jest that they were "impressed that I survived as I thought all ginger babies were drowned at birth". Makes you wonder if people would take this to the next level.
     
  3. D_Poppy_Cocque

    D_Poppy_Cocque New Member

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    Hmmmm.... sounds a little bit like Gatticca to me too! I think we should be left to develop as we are... if we start genetic testing for anomalies, what next? Pre-programming for big schlongs, big boobs, what hair color? Eyes? It opens a pandora's box of ethical questions. Would you, knowing you were programmed a certain way, be able to say that you are really you? We are designed to be unique... let mother nature take it's course. Just look at all the different and outstanding people here on this site. If EVERYBODY had big dicks, then we all wouldn't be here. In that case, small dicks would be the rarity. Good stuff to think about. :thinking:
     
  4. Gisella

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    A test that would detect serious genetic diseases i would welcome and for sure i would use it because would not want my child to suffer and live in hospitals and etc...but any other tests about eliminating an embryo based on physical traits and tendencies i would not do it or sure...


    And interesting last night i was watching NBC cable about the great lenghts couples with difficulties getting pregnant go just to have a child in IVF...in that situation they may welcome "any" child... we see so many pregnancies and babies being born all over that some may take a new life in the making for granted...
     
  5. Nobody is forced to do this new procedure to test the embryos so, in my mind it seems that it would be best left up to personal choice. The line that needs to be drawn is to make sure it is never forced upon someone in anyway, which includes Gattacca like discrimination against those who are chosen to be conceived au natural.
     
  6. dong20

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    Not yet....:rolleyes:
     
  7. and hopefully won't ever be, unless it's freely given to every group (class, $, race) in which the entire world would be helped tremendously
     
  8. dong20

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    I think that is the real issue; would the world be 'better' if for example :

    Stephen Hawking, Evelyn Glennie, Edison, Einstein, DaVinci, Isaac Newton, Beethoven to name but a very few had never been born...or in future would never be born...?
     
  9. Dr Rock

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    who lives in the east 'neath the willow tree? Sex
    probably the same line that's already drawn: it's up to medical authorities to determine what comprises a disease or defect and what is merely natural variation. the key is to make sure people are educated to begin with.
     
  10. mindseye

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    Hey, if they can breed out homosexuality, maybe they'll breed out susceptibility to religious-extremist claptrap first.
     
  11. i can only hope they don't breed out either, it would make life far less entertaining ...
     
  12. madame_zora

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    I just wish money weren't involved. Medical professional's morals can be bought, and this makes me wary.

    Wary or not, it is progress and the way of the future. It will be interesting to see how it develops in the next 20 years.
     
  13. dong20

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    While I suspect that latter would be happy to eradiacate the former, they would then have no purpose in life...:rolleyes:
     
  14. Ethyl

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    Problem is, there are too many people in powerful positions who go to great lengths to prevent educating the general public on scientific progress (politicians, government and religious leaders, etc.) or do their best to warp the facts for their own purposes. Those of us who choose to research these issues on our own find ourselves llistening to half-baked arguments from ill-informed people about the ethics of these issues. Sigh.

    Where to draw the line? I don't know. All of these new discoveries about DNA have great potential in curing or even preventing diseases or various physical/mental disorders. Yes, I think the human race would have been poorer without the music of Beethoven and Schumann, or the works of Dickens and Hemingway, or the art of Van Gogh and Kahlo. But they also made life unbearable for those around them or turned on themselves, as Van Gogh and Hemingway did. Inspiration is often derived from pain and sorrow that not only is experienced by the individual, but also family, friends and others around them. These diseases and disorders affect not only the afflicted, but everyone around them. One could certainly argue those are valid reasons to consider the regular identification of faulty DNA units and eliminating them.

    As long as we allow history to teach us (we have a knack for ignoring it), there may be hope. While a small part of me worries about the possibility of abuse (i'm reminded of the holocaust and The Boys from Brazil), I want to believe it can be used for a greater and ethical good.
     
  15. Dr Rock

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    who lives in the east 'neath the willow tree? Sex
    that is the problem i'm talking about. to derive any genuine benefit from this type of technology will require us to get rid of the systems that would inevitably abuse it.
     
  16. madame_zora

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    What, and tear our fat asses away from American Idol? Surely you jest.
     
  17. Ethyl

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    :biggrin1:
     
  18. Ethyl

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    I understand but who do we trust to 'get rid of the systems'? Who are we supposed to trust with any of this technology?
     
  19. findfirefox

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    No one can be trusted, everyone has there own agenda.
     
  20. Ethyl

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    What a relief. My paranoia is not unfounded.
     
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