Genetic Engineering of Sexuality?

Christianity Today's newsletter this afternoon contained an article regarding newfound evidence of genetic predisposition toward homosexuality... but that's not all. Eight out of 100 sheep are homosexual, and scientists are developing a way to genetically "make them heterosexual". Christian leaders are jumping all over this, many of whom--such as Al Mohler, president of Southern Baptist Seminary--are claiming that this proposes a legitimate means of helping people "avoid sexual temptation and the inevitable effects of sin." Others, like Nigel Cameron, president of the Institute on Biotechnology and the Human Future, warn of the unavoidable perils of the availability of this type of genetic procedure on young or pre-born children: "People who wanted to have gay children would be able to turn their children gay, and you would end up with a use of hormones to construct sexuality for your children," he explained. Still others, such as the leadership of Exodus International, an evangelical ministry whose goal is to help those seeking assistance in being conformed to Christ in their sexuality, argue that this is entirely unnecessary. They cite their own "recovery" stories as prescriptive, emphasizing the divine power of God to transform lives even in the midst of genetic dispositions, including the power to alter one's sexual identity.

In my own opinion, homosexuality is often encouraged by certain sexual predispositions, yet I would not label it a disease. To this degree, I believe the field of psychiatry has made a positive step away from secular "treatment". If we treat homosexuality as a disease, then we strip it of all morality whatsoever. I can hear the rebuttals coming to those claiming that God's power is sufficient:

"God has the power to heal disease, but he has given us the capacity to understand the human body and develop treatments for those infirmities. To refuse the use of such treatments is simply naive and cruel, because who is to say that God does not wish to use us to bring about the healing he desires for someone?"

Yet this line of reasoning is not parallel to the other, because we are not talking about diseases... we're talking about immorality, even if it is encouraged by a genetic factor. Personally, I share Dr. Cameron's fear of what a free pass for this type of genetic intervention could snowball into. If it were even ethically permissable (and I disagree that it is) to genetically change a young or pre-born child with a homosexual orientation to a heterosexual, would the inevitable prospects of changing heterosexual children into homosexuals be worth such a measure? Is this necessary, considering the power and will of God to transform lives? I sincerely hope that Mohler and others consider the implications of this before a horrendously destructive public awareness campaign goes under way "in the name of God". I will not sign such a petition or vote for such a thing, should it materialize. Would you?

* All facts in this post were gleaned from the aforementioned article, which can be found by following the link provided.

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