Gender Selection Essay
For centuries there had been one sex that dominated the development of society. Laws, religion and lifestyle all revolved around the idea that one sex, the male sex, was dominant. Oppressed and considered inferior, women would obey the men, forgo all rights and accept all responsibility. Only recently, with the emergence of the women’s liberation movement, have both sexes been considered equal. For the first time in human history, both sexes have been given the chance to fulfill their potentials without discrimination. Parents, despite preferences of having a girl, or a boy, have known that regardless, their child would have an equal opportunity at life. The cutting edge technology, however, means that all this could change. The ability of parents to actually select the gender of their child could have not only devastating effects on society, but on the lives of so many children and parents.
Whether parents had a girl or a boy has always been left up to nature to decide. To date, no-one has dared interfere with the genetic workings of the body, mainly because the technology did not exist to do it. Now, with the dawn of the twenty-first century, that technology has arrived and mankind is faced with a very important decision: whether or not to “play God” and manipulate the gender of their child to suit their preferences. The romance of having the perfect nuclear family, with two boys and two girls’ fills the heads of young couples everywhere, and when given the opportunity, many are likely to accept and genetically alter their offspring so that they do indeed have two girls and two boys. The consequences are largely unknown, and could be dire. Technology can alter the sex. What altering the genetic makeup of a human being does to that human being is untested, and highly dangerous. New diseases could emerge, capable of wiping out the human population. The gender modifying could alter another aspect of that person, deforming them, or disabling them. The effects could be endless and disastrous. The change the gender of a child is dangerous to not only that child, but to the rest of the world. That is a fact that everyone must stop and consider.
The arguments for gender altering may appear convincing. Some genetic diseases may be passed on to one gender only, and the parents may wish to ensure their child is not of that gender and therefore has no chance of being born with the disease. By doing this, the parents are robbing the child of their true sexuality. It is impossible to decide whether or not the child would prefer to be a different sex then to have a genetic disorder. It is impossible to decide because it is a decision that was never meant for mankind to make. By ensuring that the baby born cannot actually have the disease does not mean that it does not carry the disease. The only way to ensure that the disease never surfaces again is to ensure all children born of that family were genetically changed to be all the one sex. To do that would be costly, costing tens of thousands of dollars, emotionally taxing on the family and ethically wrong in every respect. The monetary cost may not be of significance for some families, but for others it may be out of their league. Even assuming that the gender could be manipulated without any health risk, it would transform the disease into an affliction of the poor, and it would label those people for the rest of their lives.
Where is the line drawn when it comes to controlling a human life? If gender alterations are allowed, what will come next? Perhaps parents will opt for children with blonde hair, blue eyes and exceptional intellect over ones that are truly theirs. No matter how it is put, the technological manipulation of gender is dangerous, and discriminatory in almost every way. The selection of gender discriminates, first and foremost, against one particular gender. However, that could lead to discrimination against people with specific genetic diseases, and the poor. Humans “playing God” has long been a controversial topic, however, when it comes to tampering with the life of a human being, the choice is clear. Leave the child how it was created, don’t recreate the child and strip it of its identity.