Eugenics, Reproductive Technologies and "Choice"

On Wednesday, I travel to Notre Dame to go through a two-day grad school interview process. I'm picking up as many things to talk about while there as possible before I go. Today, I was drawn to this article hinting at some of the consequences of genetic choice. Gattaca seems well within the realm of possibility the more big business is in control of medicine and the more we are afraid of health issues and therefore flee to insurance companies to pay for more and more costly procedures. Here's a quote from the article. "Fear" is a key concept in this article. "Since none of us know what evils may lurk in our genes, prospective parents can hardly escape the ever-widening net of fears being cast over the health of their future children. Most parents-to-be do not realize that the information prenatal tests offer is often uncertain and rarely useful. Nor are they usually warned of the anxiety the tests themselves tend to engender. The choice ideology that is part of the thinking of those of us who support abortion rights keeps many of us from acknowledging the one-sidedness of our 'choice' to assent to predictive testing. Many of us don't pay for these services out of pocket, so that our 'choices' are constrained by the cost/benefit calculations of our insurers. They are, of course, also limited by the calculus of profit that determines which tests are developed, and how (and at what price) they are marketed."


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