I have some pretty strong feelings about eugenics (it's a good and necessary practice), but I find it very, VERY difficult to talk about it with anyone since I'm instantly labeled a Nazi for supporting it. I'm hoping the folks on Think Atheist will be more inclined to intellectual discussion than name-calling and dismissal.
The start off, some disclaimers: genocide is wrong; taking human rights away from people of a race/religion/hairstyle you don't like is wrong; concentration camps are wrong; violence in wrong.
There. Now to the actual discussion.
When I talk about eugenics, I'm talking about the practice of systematically removing debilitating genetic traits and defects from a population by means of regulating the reproduction of its citizens. Do you have Schizophrenia? Did you know that this ailment is genetic and very easy to pass on to you children? Please, do not punish an innocent child with this problem. Are you genetically healthy, intelligent, and talented? Do you have special immunities that make you less likely to get sick? By all means, spread these traits to future generations, either by having children yourself or donating to a sperm or egg bank. Do you want children but should not carry your genetic problems onto them? Adopt. Adoption will always be available no matter what the society (just because someone has good genetic material does NOT mean they would make a good parent). Do you say that adoption is not the same? Then I suppose you care more about satisfying your selfish desires than the well being of a child.
Eugenics is, at its base, very simple - think about the future first.
I'm leaving this post now for what I'm hoping will be thoughtful and anti-inflammatory discussion.
yea, I've sort of concluded, that it will be human greed, selfishness that will mess this all up. If people learned how to be compassionate, that's another story, but it's been 5000 years or so of civilization, and we are certainly not learning this fast enough, if at all, even in supposedly more humane countries.
The Gattaca scenario is already happening, in the sense of those lucky enough to have fewer problems, or very little health related, and I would also emphasize, intelligence problems, are literally taking over the planet, and obviously always have been. Oh, and those without illness who are fortunate to grow up in the good parts of the world, have the world in their oyster...and even they continue to screw the other fortunate ones, while always screwing the misfortunate ones.
My dad was actually adopted, and if he hadn't I wouldn't be here. My position on adoption is therefore heavily biased in favor.
On the other side, my sister+ is now in the adoption process after many years of trying themselves. There's been a lot of complaining, but I don't think we should dismiss it as complete egotism of the person, rather a long drawn out debate between nurture and nature, and applaud those who end up going against nature.
Infanticide rates are highest among adoptees. Pro-lifers promote adoption in lieu of abortion, which I completely disagree with. From the procreative end, adoption is a last resort. No child should be born with adoption in mind.
However, many children who have become parentless do need parents and these are the ones who should have priority. Womb rental for selfish breeders should not exist.
"At the end of the day our species has done fine without the intervention of eugenisists for millenia"
Yes. The standard modus operandi is to place deformed babies in the forest for the animals and isolate the psychologically handicapped until they die of (self) neglect. If you don't think human solutions are good, take a quick look at nature's. Reductio ad hitlerum isn't a valid counter argument unless all conditions are met.
What if we rename it from eugenics to genetic medicine?