The number of genetic disorders that humans may have is staggering. Some of them occur naturally due to the mutation process of cells, but sometimes they occur because parents pass along faulty genomes to their children. By evaluating the pros and cons of genetic engineering in humans, we can determine how treating these often painful, debilitating, and often fatal disorders can benefit everyone.
What Are the Pros of Genetic Engineering in Humans?
1. It would save lives.
Genetic engineering could help to prevent a lot of problems that occur at birth. Fewer children would suffer from tragic diseases that eliminate the possibility of a long, fulfilling life. Instead of worrying about Fragile X or Cystic Fibrosis, parents would simply use genetic engineering to fix the codes.
2. It could strengthen the human genome.
Although it sounds like something out of science fiction, genetic engineering could enhance specific qualities within a child at birth. This could make future generations smarter and stronger through science.
3. It may guarantee the survival of the human race.
If global warming trends continue and the planet becomes a more inhospitable place to live, humans will either adapt to those conditions or die. Genetic engineering could make the adaptation process happen much faster.
What Are the Cons of Genetic Engineering in Humans?
1. It would create a new class of humanity.
There would be a clear social division between humans who were genetically engineered and those who were not. This may, in turn, give one group societal advantages over the other.
2. It may have unintended consequences.
We do not know what the long-term consequences of human genetic engineering could bring. Our attempts to save the human race might very well end up destroying it.
3. Fixing mutations may just cause more mutations to occur.
Evolution occurs naturally every day, so humanity trying to tinker with that process may just enhance it even more. This might mean new mutations may occur when the current ones are being fixed.
Genetic engineering in humans holds a lot of promise for a brighter medical future. Will there be societal or ethical consequences in pursuing this scientific field? By weighing the pros and cons thoroughly, we can all decided together if this is a journey we wish to take.
Crystal Lombardo is a contributing editor for Vision Launch. Crystal is a seasoned writer and researcher with over 10 years of experience. She has been an editor of three popular blogs that each have had over 500,000 monthly readers.