With the implementation of Obamacare, a challenge went out to researchers to devise the $100 genetic profiling kit. This less expensive method is, of course, meant to cut costs to taxpayers, who ultimately bear the burden for public healthcare, but such a cost-cutting kit might also provide doctors with an inexpensive ‘selection’ tool.
Certainly, this new technology can and will be used to better diagnose and treat children both before and after birth, however its potential for abuse is terrifying. Forget eugenics–forget parental selection. Think economics. Will our government one day force parents to choose abortion rather than pay for a lifetime of doctor visits for a genetically defective child? Will individuals one day be required to submit to genetic screening to ensure healthy children and a healthier ‘nation’?
It’s coming. And it may be just one generation away–if we’re here that long. Even so come, Lord Jesus!
Bloomington, Indiana will always be one of my all-time favorite cities. As an avid high school vocalist, I spent summers there during the renowned Indiana University Music School Performers Clinic, and I vaguely recall walking past the gigantic plants on display in the greenhouse. I may have even commented upon them to friends as we headed toward the school bookstore to buy IU branded souvenirs—proof of our vocal triumphs in the shadow of IU’s operatic greats such as Eileen Farrell and Margaret Harshaw.
Many, many years after those naïve teenage years, I’d once again walk past those monstrous plants (grown even larger by then)—this time as a pre-med, biology student. In fact, I still dream about the many student trails that criss-crossed the Sciences section of IU’s sprawling campus. Inevitably, my dream walks take me past the familiar, Victorian style, glass building and the limestone hall behind it, both named for David Starr Jordan.
Imagine my shock then, when my current research into the early 20th century eugenics movement took me back to my Bloomington alma mater and back to Dr. Jordan, a man who epitomized the philosophy of the pseudoscientific movement that packaged racial and social bias within the pretty wrappings bettering humanity. Continue reading “Molecular Babylon Series III — A Starr Rises in Indiana”
LAST NIGHT, while waiting to ‘get sleepy’, I tuned into the BBC News channel on our Roku box to catch up on the latest Olympic results. The first image to greet my curiosity was a chart of the medal standings. As you see from the chart to the left, the United States holds a comfortable lead not only in the overall number of medals, but also in the number of gold medals.
Since these world ‘games’ are touted as being a unification of the world countries in one place, with one dream, one cause (I’ll save the analysis of that Babylonian redux and its spiritual motives for another essay), why should numbers matter? Isn’t the whole point to share a friendly rivalry in peace? Of course it isn’t the point! Every country wants to take home the gold, and denying it is pointless. Continue reading “Molecular Babylon, Part I: Can Olympic Aspirations Beget Superhumans?”