We now have the capability to genetically alter human
characteristics like intelligence, height, and strength. H ow should
society regard this, as a boon or as a potential danger?
For many years we have used conventional methods such as
education, exercise, and diet to alter human characteristics like
intelligence, height, and strength. The new genetic method should
not be considered a potential danger as long as it is safe and
accessible, without discrimination.
From the standpoint of Jewish ethics, it is permissible to
undergo artificial procedures such as artificial insemination (A IH )
or in-vitro fertilization (IV F) only when they are medically
indicated. These procedures are not permitted solely for the
purposes of preselecting the fetus’s gender or other characteristics.
H owever, if the procedure is being performed anyway, due to
medical indications, preselection of the fetus’s gender or other
characteristics, such as intelligence, height, or strength, may be