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The Lasso

The Student News Site of Santa Rosa Academy

The Lasso

The Student News Site of Santa Rosa Academy

The Lasso

[OPINION] Designer Babies Aren’t the Answer

CRISPR nuclease and recognition lobe doing its job
ART-ur/Shutterstock.com
CRISPR nuclease and recognition lobe doing its job

CRISPR is a technological advancement that genetically selects and modifies the DNA of a living organism. This means that a zygote, a fetus not yet formed, can be altered using genetic tests and specific genetic engineering. Some people use genetic testing to make sure their baby is healthy and has no issues. Others use it to control and manipulate how a child looks. Sometimes it can have benefits like removing cerebral palsy from a child’s life. Which supports the child to help them live a healthier life.

Junior Araia Worthington said “CRISPR is good if you use it for the right reasons. If you use CRISPR to help someone with a genetic disease but if you use it to make someone ‘look better’ then that’s just dumb. You shouldn’t be able to change how someone looks when you never knew what they looked like in the first place.”

CRISPR works by taking a guide RNA in the recognition lobe and attaching to the other side of the double helix. It searches for a certain code that the RNA has. Then once it finds that code it unzips the double helix. Then the recognition lobe rips out the mutated or “incorrect” DNA and deletes the mutated section. Extra nucleotides will come and fix up the blunt ends on the DNA.

An anonymous freshman said,” I didn’t really know this existed until you told me but now that I think about it more, it sounds pretty cool. I don’t take biomed but it would be really cool to see what could happen when removing disorders.”

If we put information aside, it’s morally wrong to genetically modify how a child looks. If we only talk about looks, it’s morally wrong and sad that you want your child to look better than they would’ve without seeing what they looked like in the first place. Sometimes genetic testing can help to see if your child will be healthy. Genetically modifying your child to fit your standards is wrong.

Junior Delilah Vazquez said, “Why would appearance be so important that I have to change it. If it’s something life threatening or damaging to the child and if you have the opportunity to change it then by all means go for it. If there is no need to then I don’t know why people would need to change their kids’ appearance when the kid hasn’t decided if they like how they look.”

The impacts that CRISPR could have on human life is still being tested. Currently it is being tested on rats and small microbiomes. It’s trying to be integrated into human life but it’s still in testing. This testing injures natural human selection. It also completely dismisses Charles Darwin’s theory on Social Darwinism: “Survival of the fittest”. Children should learn to navigate life in every way possible. No matter the shape and size of your child, you should love them anyway. You don’t need genetic engineering to change and control someone’s life.

Bio-med teacher Leilani Worthington said,” I am not in favor of using genetic engineering to modify people’s physical appearance. I think people should be happy with the way they are made originally AND I am not a fan of plastic surgery either. It seems like a version of that. Our bodies are made how they are supposed to be made. We should be happy with that.”

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About the Contributor
Danika Ivancic, Staff Writer
Danika Ivancic, born in Laguna Niguel, and raised in Menifee, California has been a student at Santa Rosa Academy from the start, attending the school in Kindergarten, all the way up until now with plans to graduate from here. Danika has many traits that make her a great fit for journalism, such as her independence and communication skills that allow her to communicate effectively with others and grasp their understanding and their viewpoint on an event for her to use. Danika has also been involved in dance for years, it is a passion of hers that has stuck with her since a very young age, she loves it and always looks forward to going to practice with her team. Danika is also quite hardworking, being enrolled in extra classes at the local college as well as the honors pathway class on campus “Biomedical Science”. Danika takes pride in her work, putting a great amount of effort into her work, and always completing it in a timely manner. After graduating from high school, Danika plans on continuing her education, aspiring to be an endocrinologist in the future. 
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