China took a break from annihilating Democratic Hong Kong to design some gene-edited CRISPR babies.
It’s not really a new advancement, though. As far back as 2015, Chinese researchers were editing the genes of a human embryo. You know, the permanent germ line edit kind. The one that if we mess up, we can’t really go back without massive society-collapsing graded risks. Oh, and the fact we don’t really know what will happen. Or how it will affect future generations. Or hell, we don’t even know how our genome is interconnected at all, really. But we’re editing it. Permanently.
CRISPR gave us the opportunity to do this. CRISPR/CAS9 allows the editing of genes through very detailed gene-line edits.
So if it has been happening since 2015, what’s new?
We’ll, now it’s confirmed. China is actively recruiting couples to make the first gene-edited baby. And so the circus continues.
Let’s just collectively hope it doesn’t end in zombies and/or mutants. Even in a perfect scenario, it still will only spread the inequality around the world even further. The rich make super intelligent and augmented kids, the poor keep the diseases and risks. Lovely outcomes even in the best-case scenario.
The Chinese scientist even made a video about it.
We could use CRISPR for great things.
But CRISPR babies are not one of those things.
Does anyone truthfully think this is a good idea? In a profit-driven society where inequality is growing? I don’t see a great outcome. I don’t see how anyone can think there could be a good outcome.
We could use it to cure a variety of medical ailments. Or we could use it to further splinter our already fragmented society. Which do you think is more likely, given the track record of modernity?
We don’t know what we are doing. These doctors and scientists don’t know the true ramifications of their permanent germ line edits. We don’t know how each piece of our DNA interacts with every other piece. It’s all a guessing game. And the babies and kids they are experimenting on? They comprise nothing but guinea pigs.