Do you remember the movie Gattaca? The movie was based on the premise that in the future you could create not only the perfect child but also have a tailor made child to fit your desires. You want a kid that could swim like a champ you got a Jude Law, you wanted a six fingered kid who could play the piano like no one else, you could have it. You wanted to avoid birth defects and all that, sure no problem. Here’s the thing though. In this wonderful world if you decided to have a child that wasn’t genetically engineered they were deemed less than acceptable in the eyes of the world, an untouchable if you will. The film, starring Jude Law, Uma Thurman, Ethan Hawke, and Gore Vidal is actually quite good. I think you’ll enjoy watching what was once a neat piece of fiction, but now we are faced with the beginning of our own Gattaca here in good old America. A fertility clinic in Washington state is advertising using the tag line “create the family you want: Boy or Girl” and has been actively engaging in preimplementation genetic diagnosis or PGD to determine the sex of the newly created embryo. This is right in line with the studies that show sex selection abortions on the rise around the world as elective procedures. Remember the abortion of a fetus is considered sacred here is the United States, and “it” has no rights until it is born, but if “it” is determined to be female it stands a higher chance of not making it to term. Kind of scary when you think about it. How long will it be before they can test for other attributes besides sex like eye and hair color, perhaps indications of height, weight, stature, bone structure, etc. After that a tailor made baby is just around the corner and the billboards that promoted the 1997 move Gattaca can come back out of storage, but this time for real.
Making your family, the new way.