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  #11  
Old Mar 12th 2009, 02:26 PM
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Default Re: Designer Babies

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Originally Posted by SMadsen View Post
At what exact moment are you not choosing qualities for your child?
At the moment of actually creating your child. Nature chooses amongst millions of spermatoza for the honor. With natural methods of pregnancy, the parents have no actual control over any actual 'qualities' of the child other than choosing the mother/father.
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  #12  
Old Mar 12th 2009, 08:56 PM
SMadsen SMadsen is offline
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Default Re: Designer Babies

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At the moment of actually creating your child. Nature chooses amongst millions of spermatoza for the honor. With natural methods of pregnancy, the parents have no actual control over any actual 'qualities' of the child other than choosing the mother/father.
The latter sentence is exactly what the difference is, - the ability to control the output. But that's an issue different from choice.

Any sexual preference is a choice. Not necessarily a result of conscious, deliberate decisions but a choice nonetheless. Or a dismissal of other options, if you prefer.

If my mating preference is, to name a single quality, black-haired women then you're right that depending on which spermatozoon gets 'lucky', that particular quality may or may not be passed on to the child. But that has nothing to do with the preference I have, and therefore the choice I felt compelled to make. It has to do with my ability to control the output.

Compare it with buying a lottery ticket. You choose to enter a lottery, usually with the distinct purpose in mind of winning. Whether or not you actually win is a matter separate from the ambition.

The difference between choices made via "preimplantation genetic diagnosis" and choices made via mating is not in the ambition but merely in the enhanced ability to control the output.
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Old Mar 12th 2009, 09:14 PM
SMadsen SMadsen is offline
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Default Re: Designer Babies

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Originally Posted by dilettante View Post
I'm not trying to draw a line.
I'm just suggesting that the more power people have to precisely control the attributes of their progeny, the more capable we are of royally screwing things up. If everyone embraced the power to choose of their child's physical attributes, then the species's genetic make-up would be changing at the speed (and with the carelessness) of fashion trends.
That sounds like trouble to me.
Yes, I understand that. It was the phrase 'letting people choose other qualities about their children besides just the sex' that caught my eye. Instead of "choose" I suspect, now after reading your post above, that you meant "control" (see my post to Michael above).

I don't see any reason to think that we will change ambitions from those we already have, - that is, choose any differently than we already do. Being able to control the output more precisely only means that we will see more wishes come through. That is not necessarily a bad thing. It may even prevent the private killings of children with unwanted qualities, usually female gender but also things like various disabilities, that is common in certain parts of the world.

The only thing I'm convinced is bad with regard to control of the properties of human progeny, is the ability to do actual design work, i.e., via genetic engineering.
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  #14  
Old Mar 12th 2009, 09:15 PM
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dilettante dilettante is offline
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Default Re: Designer Babies

Pondering this topic some more today, another potentially controversial aspect has come to mind. As the good dr. mentioned in the OP, this isn't really about "designing" your child, so much as it is choosing your favorite "child" from a wide variety of choices and then disregarding the rest.

While such a process may certainly help rid the species of certain genetic disorders, it will do so not by curing the (potentially) afflicted but by eliminating them at an extremely early stage. If I have the general idea, this process essentially involves artificially creating a very large number of human embryos so that parents can pick their favorite. I suspect they'll have the option of saving some embryos for later use and those with "undesirable" traits can be destroyed.

I recognize that many people have no problem with this, and I myself can't really join in with those who equate the termination of a newly created zygote with "murder." Nonetheless, on a personal level I find this idea chilling.
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  #15  
Old Sep 24th 2011, 03:54 AM
GikhemJ GikhemJ is offline
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Default Re: Designer Babies

Well, in spite of controversy, there is still a successful business of generating “designer infants,” or kids intended by genetic manipulation to their parents' precise requirements, Trend of designer babies still alive and well. Curtailing hereditary problems was the birth of the science behind it, but critics slam the fertility business for creating humans made-to-order. IMO, we can just reserve this technology to clear diseases and other syndromes. We must not tamper with genetic diversity or else we could cause more damage to ourselves than we can control. And yeaa It's like removing all the risk to make life more worth-living. :3
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Old Sep 25th 2011, 11:07 AM
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Default Re: Designer Babies

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Originally Posted by GikhemJ View Post
Well, in spite of controversy, there is still a successful business of generating “designer infants,” or kids intended by genetic manipulation to their parents' precise requirements, Trend of designer babies still alive and well. Curtailing hereditary problems was the birth of the science behind it, but critics slam the fertility business for creating humans made-to-order. IMO, we can just reserve this technology to clear diseases and other syndromes. We must not tamper with genetic diversity or else we could cause more damage to ourselves than we can control. And yeaa It's like removing all the risk to make life more worth-living. :3
The problem is that the lid never works with pandora's box. Once it is open, its open and the problems never go back inside and stay there - no matter how much you might want it to be so.

In other words, if you want to use genetics to treat diseases and other syndromes, you are going to see genetics used to create designer babies. That's just how things work.
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  #17  
Old Sep 25th 2011, 12:54 PM
MeMyselfAndI MeMyselfAndI is offline
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Default Re: Designer Babies

I think that's a good thing. Both me and my wife have certain attributes, which we think are genetic, that we'd edit out of our children if it was possible at the time. And will with the next one, if it will be possible. And there are many additions we'd make, together. For example, I'd want to add genes to make my child more athletic, maybe, if it does not cost too much, insert the genes of some great footballer, like Andrei Arshavin

so that, hopefully, my new son would be like Arshavin, when he is an adult. Karina loves piano, plays it beautifully herself, and, I have no doubt, would want to make our child a talented pianist. She'd add the genes of Boris Berezovsky (the pianist, not the evil oligarch of whom I already posted, that one is Boris Abramovich Berezovsky, this one is Boris Vadimovich...)


I think there is nothing wrong with that. Could be very usefull indeed.

Only problem I see is, how affordable would it be? If it ends up only accessible to the wealthier segments of society, we'd end up having a superior class of people, genetically modified for talent, physical fitness, etc, while everyone else would be inferior.
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  #18  
Old Sep 26th 2011, 01:56 AM
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NickKIELCEPoland NickKIELCEPoland is offline
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Default Re: Designer Babies

Yes, they should be allowed to do this.
Rich people get the perks that money can buy,
Poor people get the strength that making-do with what they've got, provides.

That's always been the deal.
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  #19  
Old Sep 26th 2011, 02:01 AM
MeMyselfAndI MeMyselfAndI is offline
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Default Re: Designer Babies

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Originally Posted by NickKIELCEPoland View Post
Yes, they should be allowed to do this.
Rich people get the perks that money can buy,
Poor people get the strength that making-do with what they've got, provides.

That's always been the deal.
Well, sometimes the poor people may get tired of "making-do" and rise up. That is how the Bolshevik regime came about
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  #20  
Old Sep 26th 2011, 02:05 AM
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NickKIELCEPoland NickKIELCEPoland is offline
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Default Re: Designer Babies

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Originally Posted by MeMyselfAndI View Post
Well, sometimes the poor people may get tired of "making-do" and rise up. That is how the Bolshevik regime came about
There are many examples of revolutions, like Solidarnosc, or the French Revolution. (you see, I prefer to talk about revolutions which had good endings).

But I agree with you, that when the poor are pushed to far, they end up having revolutions. And that's part of the strength that they get, which I was talking about. Poverty creates strength, which again creates revolution.

There are many examples of parents who have strength which poverty gave them, and they have children who have perks which wealth bought them. Two very different generations from the same family, in other words.

Very often the children turn into exactly the kind of people that their parents fought against.
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Last edited by NickKIELCEPoland; Sep 26th 2011 at 02:08 AM.
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