Designing Our Descendants presents twenty essays by physicians, scientists, philosophers, theologians, lawyers, and policy analysts addressing these issues from diverse perspectives. In three sections, the authors discuss the short- and long-term scientific feasibility of IGM technology; ethical and religious issues related to safety, justice, morality, reproductive rights, and enhancement; and regulatory issues including the necessity of public input and oversight and the influence of commercialization. Their goal is to open a dialogue engaging not only scholars and scientists but also government officials and concerned citizens. The authors conclude that while IGM cannot be carried out safely and responsibly on humans utilizing current methods, it is important to begin public discussion now to determine whether, and if so how, to proceed.-- Eric M. Meslin, Indiana University
Human enhancement, Harris argues, is a good thing--good morally, good for individuals, good as social policy, and good for a genetic heritage that needs serious improvement. Enhancing Evolution defends biotechnological interventions that could allow us to live longer, healthier, and even happier lives by, for example, providing us with immunity from cancer and HIV/AIDS. But the book advocates far more than therapies designed to free us from sickness and disability. Harris champions the possibility of influencing the very course of evolution to give us increased mental and physical powers--from reasoning, concentration, and memory to strength, stamina, and reaction speed. Indeed, he supports enhancing ourselves in almost any way we desire. And it's not only morally defensible to enhance ourselves, Harris says. In some cases, it's morally obligatory.
Whether one looks upon biotechnology with hope, fear, or a little of both, Enhancing Evolution makes a case for it that no one can ignore.
Drawing from the biblical tradition, Peterson argues that human beings have a unique capacity and calling to tend and develop the natural world---including themselves, their bodies, and their genes---as God's garden. While carefully addressing legitimate religious concerns, Peterson's theologically grounded yet Jargon-free discussion puts forth clear and specific guidelines for the proper use of genetic Intervention to help people.
Distinctive for its nuanced approach, Changing Human Nature will fill the need for a thoughtful, positive Christian perspective on this timely topic.
"Perhaps the most important contribution of this book is Peterson's retrievel of a strand of Christian theology that focuses on the human task to sustain, restore, and improve the conditions of our incomplete and damaged creation---including humans as part of creation---rather than to accept as God-given the state of the creation as we find it today...Opens new terrain in bieethies for evangelical Christians...One doesn't have to agree with every move Peterson makes here to recognize the great significance of this book for the current debate."---David P. Cushee Mercer University