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Editing humanity: Should we change who we are?

EDITORIAL
August 16. 2017 12:28AM


Dartmouth biology professor Bryan Luikart thinks that Oregon researchers experimenting with gene editing on human embryos “dodged some ethical considerations” because the embryos were destroyed without being allowed to develop.

Luikart misses the point.

Rewriting the genes of human embryos has tremendous potential to improve our lives, preventing untold genetic diseases. But developing such miraculous technologies would clearly require the destruction of human life.

Gene-editing techniques could also go far beyond disease prevention, into eugenics.

CBS News reports that in Iceland, prenatal screening for chromosomal abnormalities has almost completely eliminated children being born with Down syndrome.

Down syndrome isn’t being cured in the womb. Children who test positive for Down syndrome are being almost universally aborted before they can be born.

This rise in “genetic counseling” is monstrous. The termination rate of Down’s pregnancies is rising across Europe. It’s at 67 percent in the United States.

Does anyone believe these children are better off having never been born? Or are they simply too inconvenient?

When we fail to value human life at any stage of development, it becomes so much easier to decide which “potential” human beings should be allowed to live.


Editorial