The Science of Genetics

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The Science of Genetics

By | October 2010
Page 1 of 5
The Science of Genetics: A Promise or a Predicament?

With the evolution of technology in the 21st century, the world of science has presented us with a promise of many profound breakthroughs and advances in the field of genetic engineering. However, the predicament is that it is not prepared or even willing at times to accept the moral and ethical controversies genetic engineering is creating. Genetic engineering, defined as the use or manipulation of an individual’s genetic material in order to produce desired characteristics or results in the same individual, other individuals of the same species, or other species, is undoubtedly changing society’s relationship with nature, medicine and perhaps its own cultural values.1 It has been predicted for the year 2020; people will have new definitions of health and illness. The completion of genome mapping will allow a health plan for each person, preventing genetic disease and promoting a better life.2 However, genetic engineering, also called gene splicing or gene cloning, is not being welcomed with open arms. It affects the moral values of human beings, as well as other living things. The competing goods in genetic engineering, i.e. creating a stronger, more advanced human race vs. a natural selective process are virtually impossible to avoid and have placed a temporary hold on the progress of this new technology and society’s moral view. Our society must be persuaded that genetic engineering is of great value in order to become an accepted social practice. This is something that society obviously lacks the conviction for thus far, making genetic engineering an object of continued scientific, as well as philosophical study. Throughout history, science has allowed for advances in production, transportation, and even entertainment. Never in history has science been able to so deeply affect our lives as genetic engineering is undoubtedly doing, and will continue to do in the not so distant future. Genetic...