Markets in deaf embryos

What do you think of this?  Consumer sovereignty anyone?

Several U.S. fertility clinics admit they’ve helped couples deliberately select defective embryos.  According to a new survey report, "Some prospective parents have sought [preimplantation genetic diagnosis] to select an embryo for the presence of a particular disease or disability, such as deafness, in order that the child would share that characteristic with the parents.  Three percent of IVF-PGD clinics report having provided PGD to couples who seek to use PGD in this manner."  Since 1) the United States has more than 400 fertility clinics, 2) more than two-thirds that answered the survey offer PGD, and 3) some clinics that have done it may not have admitted it, the best guess is that at least eight U.S. clinics have done it.  Old fear: designer babies.  New fear: deformer babies.

Of course Nick Bostrom will push us one step further and ask why the status quo bias?  Aren’t we all "deformed" compared to the Uebermensch of the future?


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