Terrors, terrors

Editing the human genome brings us one step closer to consumer eugenics
Dr David King
Hijacked by the free market, human gene editing will lead to greater social inequality by heading where the money is: designer babies

Whereas how it should be done is GoodThinkers determining who else may live or die.

If you peel away the hype, the truth is that we already have robust ways of avoiding the birth of children with such conditions, where that is appropriate, through genetic testing of embryos.

Yep, he really does say it. It’s morally fine to kill off those disapproved of but not to modify those who don’t exist as yet.

12 thoughts on “Terrors, terrors”

  1. “Once you start creating a society in which rich people’s children get biological advantages over other children…”

    We have this already – because of assortative mating.

  2. Bloke in North Dorset

    “I think David King is the wanker who thought Exxon-Mobil should move the Fawley refinery inland to avoid rising sea levels.”

    But, but, but that’s a sailing landmark we all use in the Solent. There’ll be chaos if they do that.

  3. ‘Hijacked by the free market’

    Actually, invented by the free market. He wants government to hijack it.

  4. The problem that I have with the OMG! Eugenics! Viewpoint is that is assumes absent nazis that human reproduction is completely neutral. A moment’s reflection will show that it isn’t and very probably can’t be. Imagine trying to ensure that a population stays exactly the same over the millenia, same number of tall people, short people smart, stupid, fair, dark etc. etc. etc. Impossible. Better to assume that selective breeding is inevitable and have an adult discussion about it.

  5. Before the era of almost all births being in hospitals, the wee mites born with obvious deficiencies were often put aside to die.

    The scale of this popular euthanasia activity became clear when births were moved to the hospitals. There’s no telling how many of the deaths in earlier days were pillow-assisted.

    It was eugenics of a sort.

  6. @dearieme: Sarah Blaffer Hrdy’s book Mothernature discusses the evolution of the human infant,with subcutaneous fat and delayed bonding emerging vs other primates, to appeal to its mother by either cuteness(I’ll keep this one) or ability to survive exposure(like Oedipus). Infanticide is very much part of human history.

  7. SE
    The shepherd that resued Oedipus, for e.g.
    A lame man doesn’t bother the sheep as the old saying goes, so an infant with a club foot might actually be advantageous.
    Also might explain why he could answer the sphinx’s riddle.

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