Only the Perfect Need Be Born
Welcome to the morally ambivalent new world and its updated version of eugenics:
This BBC article celebrates the birth in Britain of the first baby tested in vitro for an altered form of the BRCA1 gene known to vastly increase the risk of breast cancer. The girl—whose family has been very hard hit by the disease in prior generations—was conceived by IVF and tested when she was still an embryo, before being implanted in her mother’s womb. She was very fortunate not to carry the altered form of the gene, because if she had been found to carry it, she would have been killed. …
Better to eradicate the carriers, it seems, than to risk a potentially curable if very serious adult-onset illness. So should cancer patients wish they had never been born? Should the rest of us wish they hadn’t been?
In the vanity and selfishness of our age, the implication is more accurately that parents who fear their children’s cancerous future should lament that they never had the opportunity to snuff them out prior to the crib.