Date of Publication

9-28-2020

Degree Type

Honors Thesis

Department

Biology

First Advisor

Dr. Joseph Long, Assistant Professor, Philosophy

Abstract

Genetically modifying organisms has been a very useful technology in the development of ways that we can solve many agricultural problems. This technology, which has been around since the 1990s, is starting to be used on humans in an effort to combat many genetic diseases. But does human genetic enhancement (HGE) cross a moral line? Many consider HGE to be a form of cheating since people who have been enhanced would have many advantages over those who have not been enhanced. To address this issue, I first distinguish between modifications and enhancements. Then, in light of Ken Kirkwood’s analysis of cheating, I describe four ways in which someone can be said to cheat. I conclude that, whatever other moral lines HGE might cross, HGE is not a form of cheating.

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