Social Control

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by carbonmotion, Apr 17, 2004.

  1. carbonmotion macrumors 6502a

    carbonmotion

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    #1
    I'm doing my sociology research paper on genetic engineering... a thought sudden struck me... Anyways, I'm going to pose this hypothetical society to you; please respond whether you'd like it or not.

    If your had the choice of living in a society where you children will be mandatorily screened for genetic defects which would lead to some crippling ailment later on in life as well as genes which cause criminal intincts in order to provide a future society that is "perfect" ...would you go along with it?
     
  2. Mav451 macrumors 68000

    Mav451

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    #2
    my answer is no. People have no choice with what they are born with. This has been discussed in my Science/Technology and Society class. It leads to (yet) another form of discrimination :(
     
  3. alxths macrumors 6502

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    #4
    I think it'd be arrogant of us to presume that this would indeed create a 'perfect' society.. Also, once you start screening for things like genetic defects and aborting pregnacies accordingly, it's easy to go a little farther and exert a little more control over people that are born, and then a little farther than that, and so on...

    So no.
     
  4. carbonmotion thread starter macrumors 6502a

    carbonmotion

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    #5
    playing the devil's advocate here: i contend that people already have no choice due to the social programing they recieve from the moment they were born to the moment they die ...at least in this society we can insure that the social programing will interact with the hardware (genetics) in a manner that will provide for a more better society. In the current society, people with bad genes, genes which leads them to violence and criminal behavior become alienate by our social structure and act out on it in unhealthy ways which hurt people. Using this method, we can ensure a safe, peaceful society.
     
  5. carbonmotion thread starter macrumors 6502a

    carbonmotion

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    #6
    Ok there's alittle difference between genetic screening of embryos and Nazi style termination of the genetically defective. And i'm not saying a perfect society, but rather a sociey better then the one we have today. A society without biogtry and hatrd, without wife beaters, well "without" is probably too strong of a word -how about "with minimal amounts of"
     
  6. alxths macrumors 6502

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    #7
    Well if you weren't talking about aborting the pregnacies, then did you mean? "Well mrs Johnson, we just screened your embryo and found that you're little johnny is going to be a serial killer--just thought you'd like to know. Cheers!" I don't think shifting toward a brave new world type society would happen in one large strides, but in small steps, even smaller that the one between our current society and the one that you're proposing. So a line needs to be drawn and I think it should be at any kind of screening process with unborn people.

    Criminality is a behavioural trait and has been shown to be detectable in childhood; and if there is a determining gene detectable in embryos, than would there really be a way to stop it? Aside from just isolating them from society. Bigotry, hatred and wife-beating all come from the person's environment, as i understand it.

    As far as genetic illnesses go, we don't know how the existance of them contribute to the psychological state of society on a whole. maybe they're essential for the average person to develop appreciation for their own wellbeing? I think there would have to be a lot of research done in that area before making such drastic social changes...
     
  7. MongoTheGeek macrumors 68040

    MongoTheGeek

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    #8
    No. There are some people who don't want to know and I don't want to make them.

    I also have serious problems with the eugenics. Abortion is wrong. Forced abortions which this would likely lead to doubly wrong.

    The whole is less than the sum of its parts. Society as a whole is not worth an individual.
     
  8. carbonmotion thread starter macrumors 6502a

    carbonmotion

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    #9
    In the first few years the conflict between those selectively engineered and those not will be troublesome. However within two centuries society will be nearly 100% filled with genetically engineered people living in harmoney. Much like globalization, I contend that its means to an end... a better end then the one we are living in right now.
     
  9. MongoTheGeek macrumors 68040

    MongoTheGeek

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    #10
    I have no problem with genetic engineering and reproductive cloning. I think that it will be a great boon. My issue is with casting off of the "inferior"
     
  10. poopyhead macrumors 6502a

    poopyhead

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    #11
    I'm all for abandoning people personally
    primarily mean people
    I think we need to designate a mountain top some place
    away from the general population (we don't want anyone saved lest there be another oedipus)
    we will designate this place as a location apart where the mean and cruel can be left to feed on their own

    I think the
    zeig heil!
    was the perfect response
    just because someone's life can be construed as a drain on society
    it in no way means that they lack social worth
    one of my aunts favorite memories is working with children with down syndrome, she was fundamentally changed, in a good way, by her work with these children
    people are not commodities
    they have worth greater than their economic viability
     
  11. JesseJames macrumors 6502a

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    #12
    I believe that genetic screening for medical or genetic defects should be allowed.
    As for engineering super-athletes or geniuses; I don't think so. That should be left to nature.
    You have to draw the line somewhere.
    I believe most people are born with predispositions but upbringing and environment has a huge influence.
    Now, all of you go rent the movie "Gattaca".
     
  12. Giaguara macrumors 6502a

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    #13
    Just "criminal instintcs"? Hey wait a minute what are genetical "criminal instincts"? Would that apply e.g. >> if my grandpa was in prison > i have higher risk of being criminal? and cousins died because of any criminal related issue >> my risk higher?

    Even if it was just plain screening for genetical defects I would have failed that. Just fsckin EVERYBODY at my dads side of family have at least asthma that is genetical .. and some othere @$@% stuff too :mad:
     
  13. scem0 macrumors 604

    scem0

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    #14
    You may be able to root out genetic defense from a population, but the real imperfections in society are malaciousness, immaturity, irresponsibility, etc.

    You can't screen for those kind of imperfections too well, so I don't think your plan would create a 'perfect' society - maybe a society free of physical disorders.

    scem0
     
  14. rainman::|:| macrumors 603

    rainman::|:|

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    #15
    absolutely not. any society that took this much power in playing god would never be perfect, in my eyes. to me, a perfect society isn't devoid of diversity, even if it occurs outside of the "normal" functions of humans, eg palsy or autism. To me, a perfect society is a place where these people have the same rights as others, first and foremost the rights to happiness and proper medical needs. Their productive input on society is not used to gauge their value as human beings, because they may be prohibited from giving back to society. People should be happy to help each other out, not see differently-abled individuals as burdens on their own lifestyle.

    paul
     
  15. Dros macrumors 6502

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    #16
    I don't know if someone born with a painful genetic disease is happy to provide a counterpoint for the rest of society to gaze upon and say, "Thank goodness that isn't me! Now I feel better about myself." Nor do I think we should encourage such schadenfreude in society as a whole.

    Of course it is wishful thinking that society would be perfect if genetic predispositions to violence were identifed and removed. That would just leave more of the rest with our own defects - greed, callousness, self-centeredness. I don't know if they have genetic roots, but I'm sure there would still be plenty of it.
     
  16. SlyHunter macrumors newbie

    SlyHunter

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    #17
    What about genetically inclined to be an Alchoholic?
    Genetically inclined to be gay?
     
  17. Bedawyn macrumors regular

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    #18
    Absolutely not. Ideal society? It sounds more like hell to me.

    On an individual level, the idea of living in a completely homogenized society, shaped by what the folks in power think is healthy and normal, is appalling. But then, I probably wouldn't have to. Most of what I am has been considered either criminal or a defect by the folks in power at one point in history or another. Someone has to make the criteria to determine what is screened for, and those someones are always going to have their personal biases.

    And it wouldn't be good for the society or the species either. There's genetic links for mental illness, and think how many of the greatest artists and geniuses have had mental problems. The genetics that cause sickle cell anemia also make the bearers less susceptible to malaria. The gene and the individual that don't suit the norm are the ones that can adapt better when the environmental circumstances change. As a society, limiting individual diversity will stifle cultural creativity and growth. As a species, limiting the diversity of the gene pool is a recipe for extinction.

    And it wouldn't work, either. Such a society isn't possible, because genetics don't work that way. You can't genetically screen for criminal traits, because they aren't caused by genetics. Genetics can cause a predisposition, a tendency, which is then influenced by environmental factors. You can't say, oh, this person has brca1 so she's going to get breast cancer, we'll just delete that gene and she'll be fine, and there won't be any other effects of the deletion. And you certainly can't do it with something as multifactorial as wife beating or murder.

    Carbonmotion, I strongly advise that you (and anyone else interested) take a look at Behavioral Genetics, available as a PDF from the AAAS web site (http://www.aaas.org/spp/bgenes/publications.shtml). Its official description:

    Behavioral Genetics: An introduction to how genes and environments interact through development to shape differences in mood, personality, and intelligence. This book is an introduction for non-scientists to the science of behavioral genetics and its broader ethical and social implications. Among the topics covered are how scientists explore the influence of genes and environment on behavior and how such research may challenge our understanding of human nature, personal responsibility, and equality. ​

    Chapter One: What Is Behavioral Genetics?
    Chapter Two: How Do Genes Work Within Their Environments?
    Chapter Three: How Do Environments Impinge Upon Genes?
    Chapter Four: How Is Genetic Research On Behavior Conducted?
    Chapter Five: How Do Mental Disorders Emerge From The Mix Of Genes And Environments?
    Chapter Six: How Is The Ability To Control Impulses Affected By Genes And Environments?
    Chapter Seven: How Is Intellect Molded By Genes And Environments?​

    Edited because she can't figure out why this forum doesn't just accept <tag></tag> like everybody else
     
  18. Dippo macrumors 65816

    Dippo

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    #19
    No, that world would be SOOO boring.

    Besides, biodiversity is necessary to prevent diseases from wiping us out, and this would eventually eliminate that diversity.

    Lastly, there's a lot more to a person than their genes.
     
  19. JesseJames macrumors 6502a

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    #20
    Yeah, but what if YOU were that tortured genius. Wouldn't you rather be normal?
    Genius ain't all it's cracked up to be.
     
  20. MoparShaha macrumors 68000

    MoparShaha

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    #21
    Not to start another topic here, but if we ensured that everyone had enough to eat and had all basic needs met, instead of 3/4 of the world living in poverty, perhaps we would already have a perfect society.
     
  21. alxths macrumors 6502

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    #22
    I don't think any of us could--I don't claim to either. Nevertheless i do think that its a valid point that would have ot be looked into before actually screening people...

    Besides, i don't think we've even had any clarification on their alternative yet.. Initially i thought carbonmotion was purposing a society where 'genetically defective' people were aborted, so in that case we could argue that they're still better off alive than dead. But, yeah im not too clear on that..

    I agree with you're second paragraph..
     
  22. SlyHunter macrumors newbie

    SlyHunter

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    #23
    Give a man a fish and he eats for a day, teach a man to fish and he eats for life.
     
  23. Dros macrumors 6502

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    #24
    But, we are already doing fetal screening for genetic abnormalities, and many people are already choosing to abort if abnormalities are found. This isn't a rare event... probably hundreds of thousands of tests are performed each year. And the sub-tests performed are expanding each year as markers for different diseases become known.

    So for the original question, the "criminal tendencies" is almost pure science fiction and isn't going to happen anytime soon. The disease part is going on right now. Sex selection is common in some countries as well.
     
  24. Dros macrumors 6502

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    #25
    Yeah, some art collectors are into "art of the insane" because of the unique styles that come out, but I don't see any of the collectors lining up to become insane themselves.

    Few people want a world of everyone being the same. I'm not sure genetic screening will necessarily lead to that. There is a danger of it, I think, but there are dangers to everything, and as I said above, screening is going on right now.
     

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