An Urgent Call for a Permanent Moratorium
We must convince society to enforce a permanent moratorium on genetic engineering of human embryos before it’s too late.
The public is not hearing about the full consequences and moral tragedy of genetic engineering of human embryos and germline editing of future generations. We need a moratorium on genetic engineering of this type.
In an age when we are understandably excited about new technologies, it is easy – but unwise – to reject any restriction on their use. A permanent moratorium on genetic engineering of human embryos is not anti-science, but puts humanity back in control of our own technology and actions.
This fast-developing set of technologies make it possible to re-design and manufacture human beings soon after the beginning of life. It seems tempting to prevent genetic “diseases” or “abnormalities” as well as enhance abilities, looks, and even tendencies to think or behave in certain ways.
But the science behind it is reckless and impossible to fully control. The results include significant damage to the new person’s opportunities for happiness and to the welfare of society. Many thousands of human embryos will be killed in the process. Our understanding and possibilities for human existence, for human rights, and even love of others may be altered permanently.
In a society that is very confused about why and how to treat our neighbors with dignity and love … in an economy and political system that constantly fail to protect individual human dignity … it is foolish to believe that we have the wisdom to manufacture new persons with positive results.
Lack of wisdom will not stop researchers, scientists, doctors, government, and many parents from forging ahead anyway.
A permanent moratorium on genetic engineering of embryos can only happen with decisive action by people who already understand the fundamental morals and values that guide us toward true happiness as human beings.
Christians should be especially outspoken about enforcing a permanent moratorium on genetic engineering of human embryos and germline editing.
The Christian ideal of perfection is not simply improvement of a person up to some abstract, ultimate point on a scale of measurement. It is fulfillment of the human nature already given to us by God. It is ultimately becoming what we truly are: children of God made in His image.
With genetic engineering of human embryos, however, there is nowhere to hide. We must either acknowledge God’s true purpose for human beings in the world, or we will stumble down a road of confusion, error, and ultimately despair over humanity’s rebellion against our own nature.