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.
After growing up in an inbred society to a seriously inbred mother and carrying inbreeding traits myself, I could not possibly disagree with you more. It is by sheer, sheer luck I ended up with most of my father's traits, rather than my poor sister. One look at my mother's side of the family and you'd shudder. We're talking the riverside family from "Deliverance" here.
great damn movie! My sis works in a theater where Ethan Hawke is writing and acting in plays...it happens to be Phillip Seymour Hoffman's theater...sorry off subject...but as for the pandora's box argument here, yes the problem is human fallibility, and just plain greed.
With the horrors I read about and watch about everyday that we are STILL doing to each other, we are no where close to a period of time, when I could imagine any kind of intelligence and compassion getting this kind of thing even close to right. this degree of genetic engineering...what would probably start off already on a terrible note, could escalate into a horrible nightmare of unimaginably worse, haves vs. have nots., and who knows? Maybe more tyrannical rulers in the world...actually I'm confident of that.
We have to re-engineer human thinking, I"m serious, we have too many irrational and dangerous tendencies, sometimes I don't even know how we can have people in such high power positions, as in, how can it not be even worse? Many would argue, it Is right now so bad in the world on so many levels with leaders making such dangerous and foolish choices, that it's only because we are not facing it right now as we speak, that we are able to even have this luxury to simply post on forums!
Regulate it the same way one does organ transplants perhaps?
Though not completely without faults, compared to the number of legit occurances, the number of illegitemate ones are fairly small. One could easily avoid organ theft - ban all organ transplants.
As long as the potential benefit vastly overshadows the potential harm, there needs to be extremely compelling arguments for a complete ban.