Transhumanism: The Drive for Perfection Essay

Transhumanism: The Drive for Perfection Essay

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Muscles strong enough to flip over a tank. Eyes that see the night as clear as day. Perfect photographic memory. These sorts of human enhancements are found in video games like Halo 3 and other science fiction media. It seems that an average human of today will not be enough for the future.
The demand for human enhancement is widely present. Professional sports leagues allow certain drugs like caffeine to be used. Sports players are often caught abusing steroids to gain an edge over the other players and their stories become fodder for mass media. Women use plastic surgery to enhance their physical features. But what of the future?
But first, a short history lesson is in order. In November 1972, Herbert Boyer and Stanley Cohen began collaborating to insert foreign DNA into a bacterium so that it would produce human substances like insulin and HGH. They successfully did so. And in doing so, they invented genetic engineering ("Biotech pioneers").
Fast-forward to the present. Scientists have begun experimenting with genetically modified foods and animals in hopes of creating a more genetically flawless organism. As they continue adding knowledge to genetic engineering whether in pursuit of personal or public benefit, genetic engineering will soon allow for 'designer babies'. With advances in genetic engineering, parents will soon be able to design their babies like fashion designers design clothes.
The transhumanist movement of enhancing genetic makeup seems reasonable, with humanity's diseases like cancer and AIDS and disorders like mental retardation and social anxiety disorder. With genetic enhancements, diseases will become the material of history textbooks and But according to Francis Fukuyama, transhumanism might not b...

... middle of paper ...

... any rate, the majority of the debate remains presumptuous: people will never know until they try.

Works Cited
Bailey, Ronald. "Transhumanism: The Most Dangerous Idea?", 25 Aug. 2004. Web. 30 Nov. 2009.
"Biotech pioneers win Lemelson-MIT Prize." MIT. MIT, 24 Apr. 1996. Web. 02 Dec. 2009.
Fukuyama, Francis. "The World's Most Dangerous Ideas." Foreign Policy 2004: 42-43. Mywire. Mywire, 1 Sept. 2004. Web. 30 Nov. 2009.
Sandel, Michael J. The Case against Perfection Ethics in the Age of Genetic Engineering. New York: Belknap, 2007. Print.
Savulescu, Julian. The Oxford Handbook of Bioethics (Oxford Handbooks). Ed. Bonnie Steinbock. New York: Oxford UP, USA, 2007. Practical Ethics Resources. Oxford Uehiro, 2006. 516-535. Web. 30 Nov. 2009.
Stock, Gregory. Redesigning Humans Our Inevitable Genetic Future. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 2002. Print.

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