Designer Babies- Are we changing the nature of Nature?

Essay by reeferxA, June 2004

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The futuristic notion of choosing a child's genes from a catalogue can certainly capture the imagination, Just as parents today enrol their children in the best possible schools and pay for orthodontics, and spend relentless amounts of money on their extra-curricular activates; the parents of the, perhaps in a few decades would be able to choose from an ever-increasing suite of traits: hair colour, eye colour, bigger muscles; maybe they would like to add a few inches to a Childs height, or improve a kid's life expectancy by tweaking inherited DNA, or ensure a resistance to viruses.

Has the superficial consumer society gone mad? Have we gone a step to far? Do we risk creating children as a medical commodity? Furthermore, could it ultimately lead to parents demanding genetically-engineered offspring with good looks, intelligence or sporting prowess? Playing god will inevitably have its pros and cons, and with vast consequences and opportunities on both sides, it can not be ignored.

Every organism carries a set of instructions that tells the organism which materials to make, how to grow and how to reproduce. These instructions are in the form of codes, the name given to these codes is DNA.

By manipulating these codes, we could change anything about ourselves, for instance, loosing weight, will never be a problem again, if one letter of this 'code' is changed. How many people want to lose weight? How much do we spend on diet books a year? This is only one little example of the possibility's of gentitic-Engineering, But as you can see it would turn the entire world on its head as we know it.

Genetic-engineering has created a lot of controversy in the Science community; following are some thoughts on the subject by various scientists.

"Using these techniques can help prevent certain...