Genetic engineering is neither good nor bad, but the outcome could be judged as one or the other (Dawkins, 1998). We, as a species, have been manipulating nature's gene pool since before recorded history, intentionally selecting for specific traits in food crops, flowers, trees, race horses, pets, our romantic partners, and for many of us, our friends. This human-mediated selection process represents a mechanism of evolution, one with significant power and impact. The historical goals of such manipulations have been the enhancement of species survival and lifestyle. Determining whether these intentional selection pressures produce good or bad outcomes most often occurs in hindsight, but not always. Some efforts are obviously a good or bad idea from the start, and even when we can predict the outcome our record is mixed.

Almost everyone would agree that eliminating a lethal virus like smallpox from the world would be a generally good...
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