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Friday, March 20, 2009

Friday Random

Random Contest of the Week: I'm not usually a contest person, but PARSECS sounds interesting. Several sci-fi writers from my critique group are going to give it a try and I figure, sure, why not? Even if I don't win I have a good story to shop around. I wrote Seventy hoping to make it into an anthology. I received a nicely worded personal rejection, and then sold the story to M-BRANE.

Random Comic of the Week: A commentary on Spring. Yes, this is just how I feel! And "Yay! " for Shinga for getting back to work on her comic.

Random Debate of the Week: Bioethics... where do you stand? Cornell University made the first genetically engineered human embryo, and destroyed it five days later. No one knows if it could have survived gestation or to adulthood to reproduce. But, if it had, the altered genes would have been passed to the next generation. A mutation like blue eyes or blond hair (yes, those are mutations, no, you aren't the result of alien genetic tampering. Simmer down.) .

Science fiction authors spend a lot of time playing with the idea of genetic engineering. I love the concept for fiction. For reality... hmmm. Do we have an ethical right to manipulate the genome of the next generation? What are the long-term consequences of such genetic tampering? And where do you draw the line between what's all right and what is wrong?


  1. The only genetic tampering which is valid for me, is that written in fiction. (Yes I know the grammar is poor here, Too tired to care). Real life = big no-no. Sure, humans have flaws. But we were Created this way. To alter anything = big bad, big no-no.

    All in my own view :)

  2. Wow, the first genetically engineered human embryo? That just feels wrong to me. Messing too much with the natural order of things, in my opinion. It's great for sci-fi, but in real life, and considering the basis of my religious views, I don't think it should be pursued. It's nice to know we have that kind of technology if we really needed it, though. Sci-fi thoughts entering in.....

  3. Am TOTALLY against genetic engineering! It took Toyota like a million years to figure out for everyone the best place for the turn-on lights thingy. Who knows what engineers would do with people?!

  4. I admit, the scientist in me is totally impressed. This whole idea gives me split views. I would love to take someone at risk for a serious genetic anomaly and do a gene-wash where their own genome was used to erase any harmful mutations.

    But then my religious views step in. While I'm all in favor of the medical aspects, I can see people doing some very bad things with genetic engineering. From making permanent slaves to genocide to... everything else. It's not that hard to imagine how this could go wrong.

    Should the technology even be developed? I don't know.

    The medical possibilities presented by being able to control the human genome are immense. The number of genetic diseases we could eradicate with that kind of control makes it tempting.

    And part of me says this is just like cross-breeding and grafting plants, just a new level.

    But once our species takes that step, there is no turning back. You can't un-know a thing. You can't erase people out of history, though many have tried. So, no, probably not a good idea.

    But it's going in my next story or three!

  5. It saddens me. This whole god complex of science I find a little scary. JMHO. ;)