Â Â Â Â Semi-conventional wisdom these days, especially among hip, active doers in the conservative sphere, is that the Old Media is dead, that The Web and new-age social media are where it’s at.Â Well, sure.Â We all have computers and cell phones now.Â But what matters most is that all of us out here deal with our ADD and ADHD or whatever chic condition we have these days and pay attention.
Â Â Â Â In addition to pure communications and entertainment, technology and discovery in other life matters wait for no man.Â And what to do and how to feel are eternal questions.Â So when we picked up our old fashioned newspaper this morning and read the AP piece entitled “Could prenatal DNA testing open Pandora’s box?”, we read it all the way through to the end (well, to the point where our newspaper ran out of space; there was more in the on-line version).Â What a cursory read of the article will convey is that those people dealing with the subject of prenatal testing, including those the AP presents as “ethics experts”, Â are ‘concerned’ about how people, especially prospective parents, will deal with new technology that can, supposedly reliably,Â indicate not only what maladies a child might be born with, or be predicted to develop, but perhaps even what ‘traits’ Â they might have.
Â Â Â Â Now, this is a deep subject, and the Associated Press is well within its purview to explore it as a public service. Â And when the AP presents the citations and quotations of people who are, say, MD’s, or technologists dealing with the mechanics of the issue, we can’t automatically say, “They don’t know what they’re talking about.” But when people are presented to us as ‘experts’ on ‘ethics’, we might want to let our ears prick up a bit. And so we get now to what for us was the revealing part of the article.
Â Â Â Â The ethics experts the AP offers us are a law professor from San Francisco who has ‘studied’ genetic testing and a researcher at a ‘bioethics think tank’ near New York City and an expert from a Center for Genetics and Society at…….Berkeley, California. Â Speaking of ‘hip’ and ‘chic’, we have come a long way when we get our ethics from lawyers and scientists, haven’t we? Â Anyway, these three,Â two of whomÂ incidentally are introduced as being also mothers of young children, supposedly to give them additional credibility, offer some problematic posings:
“This really changes the experience of what it will be like to be pregnant and have a child,” said Marcy Darnovsky of the Center for Genetics and Society in Berkeley, Calif. “I keep coming up with the word, game-changer.”
She wonders if parents would withhold their commitment to a pregnancy until test results show a fetus is “good enough” to be born. And what, she asks, is good enough?
That knowledge has a flip side. “How much responsibility are we expecting people to take for the genetic makeup of any child they might have?” asks Josephine Johnston, a research scholar at the Hastings Center, a bioethics think tank near New York City.
If a child is born with a condition that could have been detected, the presence of the test changes that outcome “from something that happened to you, to something that you participated in,” she says.
“That’s a very big burden to place on would-be parents,” she said, adding that it’s hard for a pregnant woman to refuse any test for a medical condition because it feels like the responsible thing to do
Â Â Â Â Yes, indeed, experts. What you said. All of that. ‘ Game-changer.’ ‘Changes the experience of being pregnant’.Â ‘To commit or not commit, that is the question’. “How much responsibility are we expecting people to take for the genetic makeup of any child they might have?” (This person understands procreation?) ‘….Something you participated in’. (Bringing a less-than-perfect child into the world?).
Â Â Â Â And finally, ‘…a very big burden to place on would-be parents….hard for a pregnant woman to refuse testing….’.Â Â And there it is, folks. It’s out there now.Â The media, and the lawyers, and the scientists, and the ‘experts’ are just doing their jobs, just putting it out there. It’s Progress, dontchaknow? And its going to be there, this new technology, like it or not. So the ‘burden’ is going to have to be placed somewhere. Naturally, all of the Progressive entities will be there to help prospective, would-be, participating, ‘burdened’, parents deal with it, but the weight of the world is all on their shoulders now.
Â Â Â Â So what we have here is this tremendous combination of angst, burden and guilt. This is how it’s being presented. These varied Progressive interests are just presenting it in a matter-of-fact, rational way and showing their concern for the evolving society. It’s too bad, they say, but these up-and-comers are going to have to get in the game here and utilize all the resources the Progressive movement offers them and carry, in one way or another, this heavy, heavy burden.
Â Â Â Â Now, when they talk about the weighty decision as to whether to commit to a pregnancy, knowing what they know, what they are ‘participating in’, we all understand what they are talking about, don’t we? Â But can we take all this ‘burden’ and ‘responsibility’ and guilt-tripping to the next level? Would it not be a ‘reasonable’ option for all those potentiallyÂ facing all these quandaries, especially those perhaps without ready and convenient and affordable means to deal with these issues, to just go ahead and consider another viable option beforehand – voluntary sterilization?Â Yes, we know. There was not even an oblique reference to sterilization in the AP piece today. Â But you can almost take itÂ to the bank that the more technological breakthroughs that occur, the more ‘ethics experts’ will arrive on scene to offer more and more ‘options’ in dealing with these ‘ethical dilemmas’. We will leave it there, the possible overtures to Â voluntary sterilization, and not go down that road any further.Â Just remember the angst of problematic pregnancies, and those awful burdens.
Â Â Â Â After you digest this, avail yourself of some of our blessed New Age technology andÂ flip to this pageÂ (h/t: Haystack) to an example, however much unintended by the Left, of the result of the combination of Old Media and modern sophisticated communications technology forays into muck-rakingÂ and read the contrarian view expressed by Sarah Palin in one of the famous e-mail releases demanded by the elite liberal media……….in which Governor Palin repeats the age-old admonition that God won’t give you more than you can handle.