Or at least every time we do the horizontal tango in an attempt to have a child, rather than just for fun, we are germline editing. Which makes all of this simply pabulum:
Future generations, however, are not able to consent to germline editing that will manipulate their welfare in ways that we cannot yet predict or alter if things go wrong. Looking back, our descendants might or might not accept our decision as legitimate, but they will have no way of changing it. It might look obvious that they would welcome a future free of genetic disability, but even if there were no unintended or unforeseen adverse consequences – which is extremely unlikely – they might not. There have been cases in which deaf parents using IVF techniques selected an embryo with congenital deafness; they did not regard deafness as a disability and felt that a deaf child would integrate more readily in their community.
Proponents of modifying the human germline often say that we make decisions for our children all the time – about their education, for example – but there is a major flaw in this argument. As a consequence of our actions, the descendants we’re talking about will still be having decisions made for them even when they are adults: education doesn’t permanently alter a child’s genome, nor affect the genes it will pass on to its own children. Moreover, gene editing is not the only way to eliminate adverse or fatal genetic conditions in embryos: we can already use conventional embryo screening and detection procedures, such as pre-implantation genetic diagnosis.
One sorta assumes that Professor Dickenson at least considered the genetics of fucking whoever it was to create Anders and Pip Lustgarten, no? After all, other than the accidents of the backseat fumble most women do think a bit about whose children they are going to have. Darwin was quite emphatic on the point.