Dangers of Genetic Engineering


11 Δεκ 2012 (πριν από 8 χρόνια και 7 μήνες)

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“Just as the success of a corporate body in making money need not set the
human condition ahead, neither does every scientific advance automatically make our
lives more meaningful” (Wald 45). These words were spoken by a Nobel
ze winning biologist and Harvard professor, George Wald, in a lecture given in 1976
on the Dangers of Genetic Engineering. This quotation states that incredible inventions,
such as genetic engineering, are not always beneficial to society. Genetic engine
ering is
“altering the genetic material of cells and/or organisms in order to make
them capable of making new substances or performing new functions”
(Wald 45). It is also one of the top controversial issues of the 20th century (Epstei
n 1).
Many believe that continuing to provide genetically constructed inventions in this world
is ethical, which means that these inventions conform to one’s moral
standards (Epstein 5). Others argue that such inventions as human clones, which
genetically constructed humans, and other genetically created figures, are wrong and
should be stopped (Epstein 5). Overwhelming textual evidence proves that genetic
engineering is not beneficial to society. Accordingly, genetic engineering is unethi
and therefore should be stopped.

One reason why genetic engineering should cease is because genetic engineering
disrupts society’s moral values and causes society to act out in destructive
ways. An online survey done by Time Magazine in 1
997, found that 11% of those who
were interviewed believe that if clones are created in the future, the genetically created
humans will only be good for “target practice” (Epstein 2).
Another survey by the same magazine was conducted a
nd found that 50% of those who
were questioned believe that clones should be treated as lower beings and should not be
given the same rights as unaltered humans (Epstein 2). Furthermore, a similar survey,
completed by MacLeans Magazine in 1993, reported th
at 11% of those interviewed
confirmed that if technology was able to change defects within their unborn child, they
would not hesitate in changing the child’s genes in order for the child to be
born “normal” (Epstein 3). The
choice to create
one’s own child will have many believe that the better the genes, the better
the child. These statistics, without a doubt, reveal that genetic engineering will be
harmful to society if certain means are available to them. Altho
ugh these statistics cannot
be applied to everyone, it does prove that unethical occurrences will transpire if genetic
engineering is continued. Such consequences as segregation between altered and
unaltered humans, civil war, mistreatment and disrespect
of cloned humans and other
severe damages will occur if genetic engineering is continually approved by science. In
order to save society from future destruction, genetic engineering should be stopped.
Clearly, genetic engineering causes unethical occurre
nces in society and should cease.

The second reason genetic engineering is unethical and should be stopped is due to the
fact that it involves reconstructing nature, which is not the job of society. Genetic
engineering could potentially breed new anima
l and plant diseases, new sources of
cancer, novel epidemics and other serious problems in which nature cannot conquer
(Epstein 4). Many scientists argue that genetic engineering has a positive outcome, and
occurrences such as diseases or other casualties

in nature’s balance should
be ignored (Bereano 18). Co
discoverer of the DNA code and Nobel Laureate, Dr. James
D. Watson, has continuously disregarded the risks of genetic engineering (Bereano 19).
In 1979, he wrote the following about possib
le diseases that might be inadvertently
created through genetic engineering: “I would not spend a penny trying to
see if they exist” (Bereano 19). The above statement clearly shows that
society cannot depend on the “high pri
ests” of science to make
ethical decisions (Bereano 18). Too much is at stake. Unfortunately, many scientists
choose to ignore the faults of genetic engineering in order to continue researching
(Bereano 20). Stephan Hawking, a renowned physicis
t and cosmologist, has commented
often and publicly on the future role of genetic engineering. He believes that:
“For the first time in history, natural evolution has come to an end and has
been replaced by humans meddling with their own geneti
c makeup” (Wald
45). Genetic engineering science is moving from exploring the natural world and its
mechanisms, to redesigning them (Wald 45). Stephen Hawking also stated:
“Our morality, up to now, has been to go ahead without restric
tion and learn
all that we can about nature. Reconstructing nature was not part of the
bargain” (Wald 45). Hawking states above what other scientists such as Dr.
Watson choose to ignore. By tampering with genetic make
up and creating new disea
science is ending the reign of man, not prolonging it. Therefore, society’s
reconstruction of nature is unethical, and should be stopped.

The third reason genetic engineering is unethical and should be stopped is because it
deprives soci
ety of God’s plan to create unique individuals with their own
strengths and weaknesses. Parents will be able to pick the genetic material of their child
before he is even born. They may choose genes that are connected with temperament,
nce, mindfulness, and perhaps sexual orientation (Bereano 18). A child may be
genetically engineered to be an enhanced clone of their parents or of a celebrity, whose
genetic heritage was purchased at a great price (Bereano 18). If a family is poor, they

may be paid to “design their child with genes tailored for a particular
occupation, together with a pre
birth contract for future employment”
(Bereano 18). As a result, all life will be evaluated only in terms of its specific use for
the individual (Bereano 18). The right to work out one’s own destiny is lost.
“Given the historical role of the United States of America in expressing the
rights of equality and individual rights, the legalization of favorable values
with regard to
human genes is somewhat surprising” (Bereano 18). One would think that
people would have control over their own genes; however, that does not seem to be the
case. Therefore, the rights to one’s own identity will be abol
ished if human
genes can be selected; thus, genetic engineering should be stopped, for it is unethical.

Genetic engineering should be eradicated due to the fact that it is immoral. It is proven
that such inventions as genetic engineering can negatively
affect society and cause rash
and inappropriate behavior. Also, genetic engineering involves altering
nature’s balance, which is not the job of scientists, or society. Finally,
genetic engineering can destroy one’s sense of individual
ity and spoil
God’s plan of making all people unique. Because of these reasons, genetic
engineering should be stopped. It is a bad science making a dangerous alliance with a
bad business.

Works Cited

ano, Phillip L. “Body and Soul: the Price of Biotech.”
Seattle Times. 20

Aug. 1995: 18

Epstein, Ron. Ethical Dangers of Genetic Engineering.

(http://online.sfsu.edu/~ron/gedanger.htm) (February 26, 2000).

Wald, Geo
rge. The Case Against Genetic Engineering. New Jersey: Englewood

Cliffs, 1996.


just success corporate body making money need human condition ahead neither does
every scientific advance automatically make lives more meaningful wald these

were spoken nobel prize winning biologist harvard professor george wald lecture given
dangers genetic engineering this quotation states that incredible inventions such genetic
engineering always beneficial society genetic engineering altering materi
al cells
organisms order make them capable making substances performing functions wald also
controversial issues century epstein many believe that continuing provide genetically
constructed inventions this world ethical which means that these inventions co
moral standards epstein others argue such human clones which genetically constructed
humans other genetically created figures wrong should stopped epstein overwhelming
textual evidence proves beneficial society accordingly unethical therefore should
reason should cease because disrupts society moral values causes destructive ways online
survey done time magazine found those were interviewed believe clones created future
created humans will only good target practice another survey same magazine

found those were questioned believe clones treated lower beings given same rights
unaltered humans furthermore similar survey completed macleans magazine reported
those interviewed confirmed technology able change defects within their unborn chi
they would hesitate changing child genes order child born normal choice create will have
many better genes better these statistics without doubt reveal will harmful certain means
available them although statistics cannot applied everyone does prove unet
occurrences transpire continued such consequences segregation between altered unaltered
civil mistreatment disrespect cloned other severe damages occur continually approved
science order save from future destruction stopped clearly causes unethical o
cease second reason fact involves reconstructing nature which could potentially breed
animal plant diseases sources cancer novel epidemics other serious problems nature
cannot conquer many scientists argue positive outcome occurrences diseases c
nature balance ignored bereano discoverer code nobel laureate james watson
continuously disregarded risks bereano wrote following about possible diseases might
inadvertently through would spend penny trying they exist bereano above statement
rly shows cannot depend high priests science make ethical decisions much stake
unfortunately scientists choose ignore faults continue researching stephan hawking
renowned physicist cosmologist commented often publicly future role believes first time
y natural evolution come been replaced meddling with their makeup science
moving from exploring natural world mechanisms redesigning them stephen hawking
also stated morality been ahead without restriction learn about reconstructing part bargain
hawking st
ates above what scientists watson choose ignore tampering with creating
ending reign prolonging therefore reconstruction third reason because deprives plan
create unique individuals with their strengths weaknesses parents able pick material
before even bor
n they choose genes connected temperament intelligence mindfulness
perhaps sexual orientation engineered enhanced clone parents celebrity whose heritage
purchased great price family poor paid design tailored particular occupation together
birth contract em
ployment result life evaluated only terms specific individual right work
destiny lost given historical role united states america expressing rights equality
individual rights legalization favorable values regard human somewhat surprising would
think people

have control over however does seem case therefore identity abolished
selected thus eradicated fact immoral proven negatively affect cause rash inappropriate
behavior also involves altering balance finally destroy sense individuality spoil plan
making peo
ple unique because reasons dangerous alliance business works cited phillip
body soul price biotech seattle times ethical dangers http online sfsu gedanger february
george case against jersey englewood cliffs

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