Up@dawn 2.0

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Christopher Adereti's post on "The Problem with Eugenics"

The Problem with Eugenics
The problem with eugenics may not be as noticeable when observed on the surface level: direct manipulation of one’s own genes—or that of their offspring, prevention of certain diseases, and the overall satisfaction of becoming “perfect”. But when we pause and truly assess this situation, don’t we see all the wrongs with eugenics: direct manipulation of one’s own genes—or that of their offspring, prevention of certain diseases, and the overall satisfaction of becoming “perfect”?
Despite the goods that individuals may see in such acts, I feel that the bads far outweigh them: replacing the role of God in our lives. As Michael J. Sandel states in his book, “A Case Against Perfection”, “from the standpoint of religion, the answer is clear: To believe that our talents and powers are wholly our own doing is to misunderstand our place in creation, to confuse our role with God’s.” I agree with his statement due to my belief in God and his eternal dominion over His creation. As mere mortals, I do not believe that it is morally right to give up our roles as humans and replace them with God’s role as creator of our lives.
I understand that many people would disagree with my ideals on the subject of eugenic, claiming for religious views to be removed as well as the biases that come with being too “morally” concerned when it comes to public health. Although it may be it difficult for these people to reason with my decisions, I can reason with why they feel the way they do. This falls back to my earlier statement that the fault with eugenics do not seem as bad when we take it for what it is: improvement of genes. However, the in-depth situations must be equally observed.
When knowledgably discussing eugenics, I feel that the practice can be compared with that of seeking the “perfect race”. In the days of Hitler, concentration camps were put in place to eliminate the Jewish people by killing them via genocidal procedures. What makes this mode of selecting for a perfect race any different from manually enhancing a person’s genes in purposeful attempt of becoming “perfect”? Some critics may argue that modern practices do not kill individuals the way the Holocaust did and that the long-term benefits would exceed those of the sacrifices—and while I agree, to some extent, with the former claim, I do not agree with the latter. How can an individual be sure that natural gene mutations, that give rise to new diseases, will not arise in the future and revert the decisions that this procedure removes? The answer is that one cannot predict the outcome of their eugenic decisions three or four generations past their time. In other words, I do not find it appropriate for a parent to strip their offspring of their natural right to live the type of lifestyle that they would prefer. The possibility that many additional issues could stem from the practice of genetically enhancing one’s genes—while also removing God’s authority as creator of creation—has led to my ultimate view that eugenics is not morally correct.


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