3 December 2015
Until recently, designer babies have been nothing more than a science fiction fantasy. Now, for the first time ever, designer babies, or genetically modified embryos, are becoming a reality as genetics research reaches new horizons. A designer baby is the option to genetically modify one’s newborn. Characteristics such as gender, hair color, and skin color can be chosen. With this new technology these genetically modified embryos could impact society in both positive and negative ways. On March 3, 2013 the New York Daily News ran a headline “Design Your Baby” (Naff). This headline had a very negative social impact. Fertility clinics had to scrap their projects because of the negative views on designer babies. This event kicked off the bioethics question, Should we allow designer babies? The possibilities of designer babies are endless. For example, it would be possible to have three-parent babies created from three genetic parents (Hanson). If doctors were allowed to further explore the possibilities of designer babies, who knows what kind of things would be discovered. To determine if designer babies should become the future of genetics we need to look at the various aspects that make designer babies an ethical method of genetics.
One thing that needs to be decided is where do we draw the line in terms of bioethics? The possibilities of designer babies are endless. As of now, all we can do is change the baby’s skin color and hair color. However, in a few years geneticists believe that we will be able to alter many other traits of the baby such as height, intelligence, personality, and disease. Another concern about designer babies is that it could lead to eugenics. Eugenics seeks to engineer a better human race by selecting the good traits and eliminating the bad traits. “Some of the worst abuses of government in recent history involved attempts to control reproduction” (Parry). The most…