By G. Owen Schaefer
Would you want to alter your future children’s genes to make them smarter, stronger or better-looking?
As the state of the science brings prospects like these closer to reality, an international debate has been raging over the ethics of enhancing human capacities with biotechnologies such as so-called smart pills, brain implants and gene editing.
This discussion has only intensified in the past year with the advent of the CRISPR-cas9 gene editing tool, which raises the spectre of tinkering with our DNA to improve traits like intelligence, athleticism and even moral reasoning.
So are we on the brink of a brave new world of genetically enhanced humanity? Perhaps.
And there’s an interesting wrinkle: It’s reasonable to believe that any seismic shift toward genetic enhancement will not be centered in Western countries like the U.S. or the U.K., where many modern technologies are pioneered.