Genetic Engineering

Partly it’s the lockdown, I suppose, and partly it’s the fact that I’m kind of a natural born couch potato, but when I binge watch, I binge watch. Today is was a documentary, in 4 one hour segments, and I watched it straight through, even though some of it was depressing.
It was all about genetic engineering, and I thought it gave a balanced view of the pros and cons and I was quite interested in seeing the different people involved in it. The dog breeder with no college degree who said science was for everybody, the guy who used to work for NASA (I began to wonder why he left) with the multiple piercings, who is very emphatic about spreading the technology, he sort of sees himself as the Johnny Appleseed of CRISPR, but he had a bit of a change of heart mid-documentary when he realized that some people really were taking it a bit too far and he’d encouraged them, the nearly blind kid (who was cured), the couple who had a 3 parent baby and were quite pleased about it, the guy with HIV who was trying to cure himself with untested, uncertified drugs, and many more.
There was a bit near the beginning where the punk NASA dude injected himself with something on stage, to give himself bigger muscles, and my first thought was, well, it’s like steroids, but a different technology, and then my second thought was “Holy shit, he’s talking about creating superheroes” and then the second and a half thought, because every thought contains it’s opposite, and a few other variations besides, “Holy shit, he’s going to wind up creating super villains.”
Scientists may create a world in which nobody ever gets sick, and everybody is attractive, intelligent, and athletic, but the ratio of good people to bad people is likely to be exactly the same as it is today.

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