10/01/2009 – Liberal Eugenics Debate

Weekly Debates

Last Thursday, the Society tackled bioethics with the debate “Resolved: Society Should Allow the Practice of Liberal Eugenics.”  Keynoting for the evening were President Randy Drew on the affirmation, Mr. Will Downes on the negation, Miss Becca English giving her induction keynote on the affirmation, and Miss Emily Durfee giving her induction keynote on the negation.  President Drew defined liberal eugenics as screening embryos for certain genetic qualities, and argued that it is better for individuals to have authority of choice in this screening process.  Mr. Downes countered, arguing that screening for certain qualities is a form of determinism that reduces humans to what they are at birth.  Miss English gave a fabulous keynote, showing the Society that new scientific capabilities can help kids live longer and gives women freedom of reproductive choice.  On the negation, Miss Durfee warned that humans do not necessarily know what genes are best, and told of the terrible consequences that could come of flippant genetic manipulation.

The floor speeches for the evening were top of the line – members vied all night to get their turn pacing up and down the floor.  The Society enjoyed the contributions of several guests, who we hope to see back this coming Thursday for “Resolved: Red Square, Not Dahlgren Quad, is the Heart of Georgetown University.”  Special congratulations to Miss English and Miss Durfee, two long-time Philofriends who have joined our ranks with the heartfelt welcome of the Society.


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