Back Talk: Genetic selection triggers ethical debate

Scientist play God through genetic selection

by: TAYLOR ZARBANO/Staff Writer

In today’s society, we are seeing more changes to our genetics.

Genetic Selection has become one of the major changes that Americans have had to face.

It has America debating if it’s morally OK. For many, they don’t even know what they think about it. Too many people do not even have an opinion for themselves.

According to the Genetics Home Reference official website, Genetic Selection is the differential and non-random reproduction of different genotypes, operating to alter the gene frequencies within a population. This definition alone breaks my heart.

I love who I am. I love that God chose to make me a girl, and I love that He, the creator of the entire universe, shaped and formed me to who I am today. I love that He had a plan for my life, even before I was born. God made me exactly as I should be. If my parents decided to change my gender before I was born, my life would not be what it is today. If my parents had changed my gender, I would question my value to them. Why would they want to change who I am? Am I not who they wanted? I wish I were good enough.

What would you tell your kids if they asked why their gender was changed? Love is supposed to be unconditional, and gender selection does not show unconditional love. We know what unconditional love looks like because Christ demonstrated it so long ago on the cross, and He continues to show unconditional love by extending His grace and mercy to us daily. He loved us so much that He laid down His life so we could be free of our sins and an eternity in hell. That is the kind of love one should have for their baby, no matter what the gender is. Unconditional love is loving that baby the way he or she comes out. God is the perfect creator, and changing His creation is like telling God that we are better than He is.

Besides genetic selection being morally wrong, it also affects the people around you. Not only are you able to choose the gender of your baby, but also the genes that make up who your child is. You can choose to take away one gene and replace it with another. In other words, you can “perfect” your baby. If you want your baby to be intelligent, with blue eyes and blonde hair, then gender selection can do that with an 80-percent success rate.

How does this affect those around you? Well, we live in a world where we constantly compare ourselves to others. We compare our looks, talents, and abilities. We often use the words “I wish.” It does not seem fair for one to have this baby who is born intelligent because it was forced, while someone else’s child who was born naturally has to work harder than ever, then compares himself or herself with this child who was genetically modified. They simply could not compete.

Another thing to look at is gender balance. What will happen in the future if there are twice as many girls as there are males? The population numbers would not change for the better. Before gender selection, we have a natural balance that was chosen by an all-knowing God. But God allows us to make our own choices; therefore, whatever we mess up, He may not stop it. Gender balance is important today, tomorrow, and many years from now.

As far as having a baby being born with a disease or a disability, yes, genetic selection is said to prevent them, which sounds great. But disabilities can be hard to deal with. It is very sad when you find that your child has one, but there is a positive side. Many families with children who have disabilities are brought closer together and made stronger. My sister is diabetic, and there is nothing that she could have done about that. But she will tell you that she is glad that she has it because of who she is today and all that it has taught her. She looks at all the blessings instead of the negative.

 

So next time someone asks you about your opinion on Genetic Selection, think about all that goes into it. So many things seem great at first, but the topic goes much deeper than what is on the surface. Genetic Selection can affect one’s whole life and their view of themselves

Baby boy posing

Genetic selection can save lives

by: MATT MOLINAR/Opinion Editor

Genetic selection, or genetic engineering, has become a major breakthrough in modern medicine and agriculture.

Practices in genetic engineering have given us the potential to completely eliminate birth defects and genetic illnesses. These practices also help keep crops alive and plentiful through harsh conditions. Through this research, we can get answers related to the mysteries of genetic disorders and other unanswered genetic questions relating to both humans and plants.

Genetic engineering is a complicated practice in which DNA from an embryo is replaced with different DNA, not related to the embryo. Another form of genetic engineering is when a gene is isolated or removed from the embryo.

Genetically engineering embryos at conception has a wide variety of health benefits. Some parents decide to have their newly-conceived offspring genetically modified to help reduce the chances of the child developing a genetic disorder. Let’s take Hemophilia, for example. Hemophilia is a genetic disorder resulting when a gene coded for blood clotting becomes mutated, causing the blood of the host’s body not to clot. This can cause a small cut to become a very serious problem, causing excessive bleeding and, in severe cases, death. Through genetic engineering, this gene can be removed at early conception, possibly eliminating Hemophilia for that generational line.

Another major genetic disease that has been recently studied and treated through genetic engineering is SCID, or Sever Combined Immunodeficiency. This disease results from a serious defect in the lymphatic system, which controls your immune system. If not treated, the disease will lead to a number of other diseases, such as pneumonia and various infections. Through genetic engineering, this disease can be controlled and even cured.

The agricultural industry has also had its fair share of genetic engineering. Genetic engineering in plants works nearly the same way as in human embryos. A wide variety of the produce we eat today has, in some way, been genetically modified. These modifications are performed to help reduce the amount of pesticides used, as well as help the plants develop a resistance toward pests and drought.

Genetically modifying plants also has helped with the decreasing supply of food. A shocking statistic shows that almost 800 million people around the world suffer from hunger. Genetic engineering can help increase the amount of food we receive from crops.

Genetic engineering in agriculture can also create better tasting, as well as more nutritious foods, supporting healthy lifestyles. There are also economic benefits that come with agricultural engineering. The more food that can be produced, the more American farmers are able to increase profits made through farming.

Genetic engineering has proven to have a positive effect on humanity. While some disagree when it comes to the topic of arranging the genes that are produced by nature, there are many obvious advantages that come from genetic selection that will benefit our health and will end up saving lives.

back talk; Taylor Zarbano