Ethical, Moral and Social Issues


Across history, with the advent of many new technologies or scientific discoveries has come fear and doubt. “It’s meddling with nature!” “It’s immoral!” “It’ll destroy the fabric of society.” “It’s against God’s will!” Such reactions surfaced after Galileo (confirming Copernicus’s discovery) declared the earth revolved around the sun not vice versa.

Similar outcries dominated the media when the birth control pill came out in the early 1960s. “It’s immoral… unnatural… will destroy the morals of society…” people proclaimed. The list could go on and on. A few decades later, a loud collective outcry erupted when the first cloned mammal, a sheep named Dolly, was introduced in 1997.  “Scientists are playing God!”  Cloning, and in particular, the prospect of human cloning, was debated and analyzed from every angle ― ethical, moral, ecological, legal and of course, scientific.

With such powerful new technologies come official opinions, organizational recommendations, and governmental regulations and laws.  This is imperative.

Today, gender selection is receiving such scrutiny. As with all technologies, it does not exist in a vacuum. Gender selection techniques have the potential to impact our global society. Several countries have banned its use for gender selection.  Others are taking a “wait and see” approach.

One thing is certain: gender selection technologies such as PGD are here to stay.