Use 'GM (genetically modified) babies' as an example of a scientific development and indicate briefly what the moral and ethical issues raised are?

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krishna-agrawala | College Teacher | (Level 3) Valedictorian

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Genetically modified (GM) babies is a matter that is full of implications for all aspects of human existence. Some of these issues are discussed in following paragraphs.

The basic physiological qualities and capabilities of humans: While the declared objective of technological development will be to improve this, it not so simple agree on what qualities are best for the human race. Also there is no guarantee that GM will not result in many unintended highly undesirable aberrations.

Acceptance of individual variations and limitations: An important moral and ethical principle is to accept the individuals as they are, with their difference including their serious physical and mental handicaps. Ability to choose characteristics in babies that are born is likely to foster intolerance rather tan acceptance of characteristic in others that are not to our liking.

The nature and extent of diversity among people. Diversity is important for people. The least important benefit of diversity is that it makes life interesting. But has many greater advantages. For example, it provides a huge pool of diverse capabilities to handle unexpected problems. Diversity also fosters innovation.

Family relationships:It might tend to change the feeling of parents towards their children as something designed and selected by them rather than a gift of nature. This may have serious impact on the emotional relationship between parents and children. I cannot imagine what these changes will be. Bur I am afraid these can have massive impact on the way we live and think. It is a big risk, and we need to move very cautiously.

Social classes: GM may lead to breeding to people of different traits to perform different kinds of jobs in the society. This might lead to the worst kind of social stratification. Horrors of this stratification system may far exceed that we have seen in the past or that has been described in science fictions like 1984.

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