Genetic Engineering Is Ethically Justified

Genetic Engineering Is Ethically Justified

Human life, with the image of God and an accompanying instrument, begins at conception. We are also responsible for how We treat the most helpless in our society (I. E. , what Jesus called “the least of these”). Thus there should be important limitations for prenatal testing, and genetic diagnostics must not be used to pressure parents into abortion. God’s Word is clear that humankind, both corporately and individually, is fully responsible for actions the Bible calls “sin. Consequently, Christians should resist attempts to convert all antisocial behaviors into genetic diseases that nullify personal responsibility and accountability. Humans are God’s highest creation and are commanded to be good stewards of the earth and its resources. Thus we have a mandate to engage in genetic research and therapy, when it is directed toward the healing end of medicine. We can class Natural law with the Roman Catholic view. According to this view, the main end of humanity is to glorify God and prepare for eternity with God.

Natural Law has five primary precepts, which is seen to follow the purpose of living. The primary precepts ‘continuation of the species through reproduction’ can be argued to argue against genetic engineering. Secondary precepts include do not murder and defend the defenseless. However the same precept can be used to argue for the use of genetic engineering which will ensure continuation of the species for those partners unable to have children. Apposing to, but not entirely rejecting the Christian perspective, is the Kantian view of GE.

Kant was a ethnologist. This means that he made teeth kcal decisions by considering the nature of the act itself, not its consequences. Kant would not be interested in the benefits of genetic engineering but in the sorts of actions that genetic engineering involved. For example, genetically modifying crops could allow us to produce cheap vaccines for less-economically developed countries (increase yield and reduce damage). Kant does not think that these benefits make genetic modification morally justified, as good consequences can result from bad actions.

Kant would look at the process involved in creating a genetically modified organism. There does not seem to be anything inherently wrong or irrational in splicing genes, but it would depend on how this was done, and whether this involved human genes. Therapeutic Cloning is more problematic for Kantian, as this involves creating a cloned embryo. The embryo is never intended to grow into a baby, and would not be considered a person. However the main difficulty with applying Canes theory to genetic engineering is that it is unclear whether he would consider the embryo as a person.

This makes the formulation of a universal maxim difficult. If we assume that he DID view the embryo as a person then some weaknesses of his argument could be: he fails to take into consideration the possible positive outcome of genetic engineering e. G. Helping to treat diseases such as Parkinson Disease and Alchemist’s, not a flexible theory, takes decision away from people, and little room for compassion when deciding whether research should take place. Cant’s first statement of the categorical imperative said that you should act according to maxims that you could will to become universal laws.

If you universalism experimenting on embryos, you hit a self-contradiction. If all embryos were experimented on, none would grow into humans, so such a law is not logically possible. A separate perspective is the Utilitarian view. Utilitarian’s would not ask “Is it right to experiment on Human genetic material? ” They would Want to know whether the consequences of using genetic engineering would be more pleasure and less pain than forbidding it. Many scientists would argue that the consequence of genetic engineering will indeed be an increase of pleasure and decrease of pain. Illness will be reverted.

Parents can protect their children from inherited diseases like cystic fibrosis, which would have the consequence of preventing not only their child developing the illness, but would mean that their children would be free of the disease. In theory certain diseases could be wiped out entirely in this way. Also, talents which are genetically passed on like musicality or mathematical ability can be enhanced. However, the consequences could also be undesirable. The genetically produced person may feel that their individuality is compromised as they consider their parents’ choice Of blue yes and blonde hair.

Society could be divided and undermined as people pay to have their children designed. Certain characteristics might also be ‘cleansed’ from the embryo, for example, homosexuality, perhaps a person inclined to put on weight. Do we want to stigmatize certain characteristics in the name of political correctness or personal vanity? In conclusion it is still not absolutely clear whether or not GE is ethically justified. The varying perspectives and clashing views/beliefs simply complicate the moral decisions and actions, creating a continuing debate.

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