Friday, August 04, 2017

I'm Not Worried About Designer babies

It's in the news again, but I haven't taken the time to even think about the implications of "designer babies." The only class able to afford such a procedure if it was to become common, the professional and managerial class, is in the grips of a moral panic not seen since Reagan era "satanic panic" and/or the "repressed memories" scam. (The "repressed memories" thing is less well known, but for a time it became cryptically fashionable for people, usually upper middle class, to explain away how they managed to squeeze the fun out of vices, become drunk bores for example, by saying some poor babysitter buggered them years ago and it was so traumatic they unconsciously hid the memory. A lucrative cottage industry arose digging those memories out, or rather creating them altogether.) 

Anyway, I'm not at all worried because this class has been regularly confusing identity conjuring and oppression seeking with political resistance and a fetus with a "condition" is a prime opportunity to grab hold of a sympathetic identity. ("We don't use the word 'disease' in our household.") Do you really think people are going to use gene editing to cure MS and miss a perfect opportunity to re-brand themselves? Fat chance. This is a ticket to the frontlines of "the resistance." Think of how many twitter followers one could have after the NYT Op-Ed comes out! Regular articles in the HuffingtonPost, maybe a column at  Buzzfeed!!