WHAT IS HUMAN ENHANCEMENT?
It can be defined as the process of biomedical intervention that can be used to dramatically improve the physical body and its functioning, far from its natural and normal capacity.
These enhancements can be broadly categorised into the physical (or mental), mechanical (aids and technology), and genetic (genetic engineering).
- The physical enhancement is more subtle. For example, plastic surgery to aesthetically enhance the physical beauty or taking supplements or Nootropics for enhancing the mental abilities.
- The mechanical enhancement is more drastic and visual; for example, bionic arms or artificial organs.
- The genetic method is the most debated with doubts shown over the accomplishments and possibilities in the future for misuse and abuse.
Whatever the method is, the enhancement should be effective, easy-to-use and ethical (unlike the performance-enhancing drugs used by athletes or endurance trainers or the Better Breed Theory of Hitler).
TECHNIQUES OF HUMAN ENHANCEMENT
FOR PHYSICAL ENHANCEMENT
- Cosmetic surgery
FOR MENTAL ENHANCEMENT
- Brain supplements
- Brain stimulation
FOR GENETIC ENHANCEMENT
- Gene tweaking
- Gene modification
FOR REPRODUCTIVE HELP
- Embryo selection
FOR MEDICAL ENHANCEMENT
ETHICS OF HUMAN ENHANCEMENT
This is one of the most hotly debated topics in the world of medicine and genetic engineering. It’s not only the simple case of performance-enhancing drugs taken by professional athletes but also about the future of our own race.
Ethics is a speciality of the human being and we must hold it very dearly. So the questions arise about the kind of ethical questions human enhancement will have to confront:
- Violating the Principle of Fairness
- Rich vs. poor
- Morally undesirable
- Trying to play with the God himself