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Author Topic:   Can we accelerate evolution?
Huntard
Member (Idle past 487 days)
Posts: 2870
From: Limburg, The Netherlands
Joined: 09-02-2008


Message 16 of 77 (578692)
09-02-2010 10:40 AM
Reply to: Message 6 by nwr
09-01-2010 7:01 PM


nwr writes:

I hope not. Eugenics has been tried in the past, and is generally believed to be a bad idea.


Well, Eugenics as practiced in the past is a bad idea. But is it really that wrong to select pre birth that your offspring is more intelligent? Or more resistant to disease, or stronger. Or even changing rhis in yourself, so that your offspring will inherit it?
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Huntard
Member (Idle past 487 days)
Posts: 2870
From: Limburg, The Netherlands
Joined: 09-02-2008


Message 19 of 77 (578698)
09-02-2010 10:50 AM
Reply to: Message 18 by nwr
09-02-2010 10:47 AM


nwr writes:

The most likely outcome will be an earlier extinction of the species than would have happened without such intervention.


What makes you think that?
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 Message 73 by Tanus, posted 08-25-2011 2:19 AM Huntard has responded

    
Huntard
Member (Idle past 487 days)
Posts: 2870
From: Limburg, The Netherlands
Joined: 09-02-2008


Message 24 of 77 (578771)
09-02-2010 3:03 PM
Reply to: Message 21 by nwr
09-02-2010 12:07 PM


Well, yes. But since we are "masters of the genome" then anyway, wouldn' t we just adapt the genome to whatever was necessary when that time comes?
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Huntard
Member (Idle past 487 days)
Posts: 2870
From: Limburg, The Netherlands
Joined: 09-02-2008


Message 74 of 77 (630407)
08-25-2011 3:51 AM
Reply to: Message 73 by Tanus
08-25-2011 2:19 AM


Hello Tanus, and welcome to EvC!

Tanus writes:

I'd like to respond to the idea of eugenics and all forms of genetic engineering being a bad idea.
All forms of technology, whether fire or stone tools, have the capacity to both harm or help the user. There is no doubt that early attempts at improving the human race met with different sorts of failures and if we continue to try genetic manipulations we will have some pretty spectacular failures, but does that mean that we should give up fire because some people get burned? Should we give up cars because there are crashes? Should we stop speaking because people sometimes say stupid things?

Mistakes are the way we learn and they are the reason that we must keep trying until we learn how to do something.


The conversation I was having with NWR (amongst others), was not regarding the mistakes that could potentially be made while getting to grips with genetic engineering. I think they'd agree with you that not doing something simply because mistakes could be made, is a bad reason not to try something.

Instead, the point being raised was that this genetic engineering might actually hinder our fitness in the long run, because of genetic variation becoming very low within the human population (everyone want s to be immune to cancer, wants to have great stamina, wants to be smart, etc.). And that because of this, it might not be the brightest idea to over-engineer the human genome.


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