Choice devolving into pressure

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This topic contains 1 reply, has 2 voices, and was last updated by  JacquelynPCruz 7 months ago.

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  • #5896


    One of the things that interests me the most about the prospect of human enhancements to the degree outlined in the book is the evolution, or de-evolution, of choice that will occur. Presumably, radical human bio enhancements will be initially quite expensive. I think it is also reasonable to assume that at the very beginning of their creation the concept of a market price for some enhancements/technologies will not even be a valuable concept. Obviously there will be smaller scale innovations that will (and have begun to) seep into the market but once a major, earth- or human- shattering innovation is developed, I think the military and the adventurous billionaires of the world will be the first to test them out. Eventually, however, just like other technologies, prices will begin to fall and the common person will be faced with a choice to enhance themselves, their children, their dependent parents, grand-parents, great-parents etc. as the case may be. Strictly speaking of enhancements, not therapeutics, these new technologies will become more and more popular and this is where we will begin to see the practical disappearance of this choice to buy in or not. The desire for progress that lead to acceptance of bio enhancements will be replaced by the desire and maybe even necessity to keep up, to survive, to remain relevant. I wonder how human nature will react to these types of pressures. The most stubborn of us are sure to remain stubborn, and I wonder where the ardent traditionalist that is the immovable force meeting the pressures of progress that is the unstoppable object will take us. Will it be towards governmentally subsidized and mandated “stock enhancements” for all, social fragmentation (via class system or physically via translocation to separate locations, countries or orbiting bodies), war and rebellion or a combination of these things? What begins as an exciting if not terrifying choice becomes something entirely different once enhancing becomes more mainstream and the pressure to do so begins to snowball.

  • #5904


    I agree with this post in that, once genetic and epigenetic enhancements are available, humans will undoubtedly feel pressured to enhance their children in order to allow them to keep up with their peers. One interesting effect I feel this will have is to create a shift in dynamics between parents and children. Whether or not parents choose to enhance their children, they will feel responsible for the child’s progress simply by knowing they made choices that influenced the child’s life so immensely. Parents who decide not to enhance their child, for example, leave the child at a disadvantage from birth. Even if this disadvantage is not very great, simply knowing that he or she is unenhanced will cause a child to develop a self-effacing bias and to feel inferior to enhanced peers. Parents who do choose to enhance their children will have the daunting task of deciding which enhancements to give and not give to them. These decisions will not only determine the abilities of the child, but also will determine what the child views as his or her strengths or weaknesses and play a large role in shaping his or her identity.

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