Friday, March 04, 2016


With the mapping of the human genome and a slowly-but-surely evolving understanding of what each link of the genetic chain does, we turn our attention to the dangerous matter of eugenics. Wouldn't it be nice, after all, to isolate certain genes—the ones for cancer-proneness, blindness, autism, propensity to violence, etc.—and remove them without doing harm to the rest of the genome, thus creating fully functional human beings more capable of their own flourishing? Ah, the fantasy, the temptation. More likely, some idiots in positions of power and control will seek to improve things like muscle strength, cardiovascular robustness, metabolic efficiency, reflex speed, agility, eyesight, and thought-processing rate. Why? To make better athletes, or better soldiers, or sexier fashion models. (It'll be the anti-eugenics counterculture that quietly uses this same gene-sculpting technology to create the first Blade Runners. Action; reaction.) A shame, really, the failure of imagination.

Personally, living in Korea as I do, I'd like to see the Korean population undergo the mass removal of the rush-rush gene, which would be replaced by an enhanced compassion/empathy gene. We could probably benefit from similar treatment in the States, where people eat while jogging and drive the freeways in a fog of road rage.


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