English Composition I
Mrs. Robyn Weaver
Human Genetic Engineering
The ability to genetically engineer and modify our children before birth is now a reality. Genetic Modification is a new science that has created significant controversy for the human race. If genetic modification becomes a common practice without any legal restrictions, our world as we know it would completely change. With this unfathomable practice, our world is now open to an array of opportunities. Scientists can now prevent certain medical conditions passed down to children. The economic advantages that could be generated from this industry are huge. Even though there are advantages to genetic engineering, there are many disadvantages that will outweigh everything else. Richard Hayes, the executive director of the Center for Genetics and Society, talks about the major problems with genetic modification in his essay called “Supersize you Child?”. Hayes makes a very good and agreeable argument about the severe consequences of this scientific discovery. Genetic modification, if not restrained by strict regulations and limits, will be accompanied by detrimental consequences to the human race in social, biological, and economic ways. There is lots of evidence and many reasons to why this claims is true.
Richard Hayes is a credible scientist that works for a nonprofit organization working for the responsible governance of genetic technology. In his essay, “Supersize your Child?” he tries to inform the audience about genetic modification and prove why it will hurt our society. He highly encourages the implementation of strict regulations and policies on scientists practicing genetic engineering. He begins his essay with background information and important facts about the emergence of genetic modification. With this new technology, scientists can insert genes into an embryo to create a certain trait or alter the biology of a human being. For example, Hayes talks about the 5-HTT gene that can reduce the risk of depression. Another gene, called DAF-2, can be used to double the life span of humans (185). Hayes discusses his thorough research on the subject and quotes many different scientists involved in genetic modification. He quotes Dr. Richard Lynn, a supporter of human genetic modification by stating, “What is called for here is not genocide, the killing off of the population of incompetent cultures. But we do need to think realistically in terms of the “phasing out” of such peoples… Evolutionary progress means the extinction of the less competent” (186). This provides a good example of the type of attitude and excitement some scientists have with the development of this technology. Richard Hayes presents an opposing argument to the type of attitude displayed by supporters of human genetic modification. These scientists are looking for the creation of a genetic elite.
After establishing a platform for genetic modification and discussing the possible advantages described by scientists, Hayes goes on to explain why it has enormous consequences. He lists the many reasons why the use of this science will essentially harm the human race and the society we live in. For example, Hayes suggests there will be a rise in inequality and that it will alter the fundamental biology of the human species. Hayes states, “The birth of the first genetically modified child would be a watershed moment in human history. It would set off a chain of events that would feed back upon themselves in ways impossible to control”(187). At the end of his essay, Hayes proposes a solution to the development of genetic modification and how we can prevent it from destroying our society. He suggests that every country needs to create a set of regulations and restrictions that limit the technology to medical purposes only. To achieve this goal, Hayes lays out a list of steps that will help the world seize control over the matter. Hayes wants the reader to...