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    #212601 - 03/13/15 02:10 PM Re: PRC Genetic Eugenics [Re: thx1138]
    madeinuk Offline
    Member

    Registered: 03/18/13
    Posts: 1448
    Loc: NJ
    _________________________
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    #212618 - 03/13/15 03:53 PM Re: PRC Genetic Eugenics [Re: aquinas]
    mithawk Online   content
    Member

    Registered: 11/25/11
    Posts: 242
    Originally Posted By: aquinas
    Originally Posted By: Bostonian
    I'm not sure why directly selecting for valued traits is worse than indirectly doing so though the choice of a mate.


    Because it is dehumanizing and commoditizes human life. It involves children being treated as consumable products valued only for the benefit they confer to a third party, rather than respecting their innate value as humans.

    If I had the chance to de-select the life threatening allergies my son has, I wouldn't have hesitated for a second. Looking back, there is nothing else I want to change now. They each have their strengths and their faults, and that is what makes them who they are.

    But if I had the power to make other changes before birth, could I have resisted crafting 'perfect' children? I don't know.


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    #212622 - 03/13/15 05:01 PM Re: PRC Genetic Eugenics [Re: Mahagogo5]
    FruityDragons Offline
    Member

    Registered: 10/09/14
    Posts: 105
    Loc: Midwest USA
    Originally Posted By: Mahagogo5
    This is a tricky one and I'm going to leave mostly what I think out of it.

    I would say though that when I chose my DH, the qualities he would contribute to our children was very high on the list, perhaps even number 1. I am not a romantic though... I won't go on about it but I am very happy with my decision.

    Secondly and I know this will def throw the cat amongst the pigeons, It seems to me that in this day and age we have effectively neutralised positive evolution. Survival of the fittest is not something we can describe as a marker of humans anymore.

    We are able to cure/save so many people with conditions that would have prevented people being able to start families. We also provide support as a society to people who generally would not have been able to care for children independently in previous eras. I think this is a good and wonderful thing. I support that people with disabilities and chronic disease should be able to have children, also couples dealing with infertility.

    But what happens in the next eon when these differences have been assumed into the population without any positive counteraction? I guess I'm thinking about thousands / millions of years into the future - I just wonder if we, in the space of 100 years, or so are irrevocably changing the course of human history for the worse in the name of being more "humane" in the present. Is that acceptable or not? If it is acceptable do we have a moral imperative to act in the positive in an equal amount, or is our business in there here and now?

    These are questions I wrestle with and don't have a firm opinion on. I wonder if geneticists and social engineers think about it too...

    I hope I don't come of as a latent Nazi, I have very strong negative views on that too.

    That's just it. We DON'T know what's going to happen. What if they are unknowingly selecting for other traits? What if those kids won't be happy because of it, for whatever reason? What will happen in a "smarter" world? We can't say we do know what will happen, now or later - and if we don't know the consequences, should we do it? What if things go too far? Everyone has a different opinion on what constitutes "too far", but I think we can almost all agree there is a line somewhere. Honestly, I haven't decided either, but I don't think any decision that would impact future generations should be rushed into without serious thought by all sides.


    Edited by FruityDragons (03/13/15 05:04 PM)
    Edit Reason: Add thought/clarify

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    #212630 - 03/13/15 05:50 PM Re: PRC Genetic Eugenics [Re: thx1138]
    JonLaw Offline
    Member

    Registered: 07/29/11
    Posts: 2007
    Loc: The Sub-Tropics
    I think the only thing that we are irrevocably doing at the moment is burning through millions of years of stored sunlight so that we can make lots of i-phones and cars.

    Vrooom! Beep, beep! Vrooom!

    And airplanes. Airplanes are fun! They go Vroom, vroom in the sky!

    Also, we are reducing biodiversity because that's fun, too.


    Edited by JonLaw (03/13/15 05:54 PM)
    Edit Reason: Adding an additional side-effect to having lots of fun.

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    #212635 - 03/13/15 07:09 PM Re: PRC Genetic Eugenics [Re: madeinuk]
    HowlerKarma Offline
    Member

    Registered: 02/05/11
    Posts: 5181
    Originally Posted By: madeinuk



    DD thought that this was almost amusing as she related this one to me (though she did comment that this was pretty, um-- cold)-- but the companion story about another bride (also Indian) who married someone else when the groom experienced a seizure at their planned wedding? That one made her angry at the woman. Very angry.

    My other response is like mithawk's here. There's not a lot that I'd change about my own DD, imperfections and all.

    I would change nothing at all on MY behalf-- but I find it painful that some of her genetic legacy makes her life so hard. It's emotional-- I freely admit that.



    Beyond that, I think that I have a fondness for English sportscars, myself. That's how I prefer to spend precious hydrocarbons.

    Well, since organic synthetic chemistry didn't work out for me personally and all I ever made was black goo. Other people I know found it far more rewarding. I think that they must like black goo more than I do.

    I'd rather have a purring Jaguar, instead. Maybe even instead of a first class airline seat, come to that.

    _________________________
    Schrödinger's cat walks into a bar. And doesn't.

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    #212638 - 03/13/15 07:19 PM Re: PRC Genetic Eugenics [Re: thx1138]
    Mahagogo5 Offline
    Member

    Registered: 06/11/12
    Posts: 517
    I like planes, not into cars though...


    The thing I hate about eugenics is that it's almost impossible to have a meaningful conversation about the pros and cons without offending just about everybody. Also many people see it as a black and white issue. I don't deal in black and white so I find it hard to speak freely, about this and most other things really.

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    #212666 - 03/14/15 12:08 PM Re: PRC Genetic Eugenics [Re: thx1138]
    JonLaw Offline
    Member

    Registered: 07/29/11
    Posts: 2007
    Loc: The Sub-Tropics

    Perhaps if we focused on getting rid of clear genetic problems first.

    Meaning that if we actually focused on obvious things that are beneficial instead of wandering off into GATTACA-land.

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    #212669 - 03/14/15 12:39 PM Re: PRC Genetic Eugenics [Re: thx1138]
    75west Offline
    Member

    Registered: 02/11/11
    Posts: 471
    I thought of Andrew Solomon's book, Far From the Tree, and the arguments he makes here. Many parents continue to bear children who are deaf, dwarfs, autistic, schizophrenic, transgender, or have other genetic deformities and love them unconditionally regardless. I'm not saying that the parents wouldn't want to eliminate the special needs (at least some days), but that many manage to cope with the situation despite the circumstances.

    But what constitutes perfection or intelligence here? Many parents of Down Syndrome do cope with their children and are grateful to have them. Do many people today elect not to have a child with Down's based on genetic testing? Yes. However, there's still a percentage of children with Down's being born.

    And where do we put the numerous amount of contributions made to human society by twice exceptional people. Where do we put Stephen Hawking (motor neuron disease), Helen Keller (blind/deaf), mathematician John Nash (schizophrenia), or Brian Wilson (formerly of the Beach Boys - schizophrenia) in this argument for a 'perfect' individual and the elimination of their special needs?

    Who's to say that schizophrenia and autism or other special needs aren't beneficial in some way to human society at large rather than at the individual or family level?

    What about individuals like Tiger Woods who many parents have idolized, despite some rather unsavory aspects of his social life? Where do we factor Galileo? He may well have been a genius in many respects but had a very spotted record with his social life and his children.

    Parents of Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold (Columbine) probably thought they had 'perfect' kids or 'normal' ones but not killers. How would eugenics have helped in those cases? There's no gene to determine such people.

    Who's also to say that we marry solely in terms of intelligence whatever that may be? For millions, they marry their high school sweetheart, a beauty king or queen, or someone who gives them financial security instead.

    What do you say to Hasidics (orthodox Jews) or other ethnic/religious groups who have many children despite the risk for genetic diseases like Tay Sachs? What then?

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    #212697 - 03/15/15 08:27 AM Re: PRC Genetic Eugenics [Re: 75west]
    JonLaw Offline
    Member

    Registered: 07/29/11
    Posts: 2007
    Loc: The Sub-Tropics
    Originally Posted By: cdfox
    Parents of Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold (Columbine) probably thought they had 'perfect' kids or 'normal' ones but not killers. How would eugenics have helped in those cases? There's no gene to determine such people.


    I think researchers are working on psychopathy.

    So, yes, it could help.

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    #212707 - 03/15/15 11:21 AM Re: PRC Genetic Eugenics [Re: 75west]
    Mahagogo5 Offline
    Member

    Registered: 06/11/12
    Posts: 517
    Originally Posted By: cdfox
    I thought of Andrew Solomon's book, Far From the Tree, and the arguments he makes here. Many parents continue to bear children who are deaf, dwarfs, autistic, schizophrenic, transgender,

    What do you say to Hasidics (orthodox Jews) or other ethnic/religious groups who have many children despite the risk for genetic diseases like Tay Sachs? What then?


    All good points, I think though that in my mind, it isn't a case of not bearing children with "faults" so much as we are supporting people with serious disabilities such as down syndrome to go on to have children (which is fine by me) so why shouldn't we cure the gene for Tays sachs or so on...

    Maybe my understanding on Eugenics is fuzzy, why does it have to be all or nothing?

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