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Ethics and designer babies
The outcry over a fertility doctor's offer to let parents pick the color of their children's eyes

“Prospective parents will have to wait for 'designer' babies," said Gina Salamone, Nicole Lyn Pesce, and Carrie Melago in the New York Daily News. After sparking an outcry, a fertility doctor who offered to let patients customize traits such as hair and eye color is backing down. Fertility specialist Dr. Jeff Steinberg says that, for now, he has decided to help parents screen out medical defects, but not tweak how they'll look.

Steinberg has just jump-started an old debate, said Madeline Ellis in Health News. With each giant leap in reproductive technology since the first 'test tube' babies, we have revisited the question about whether such tinkering with nature is ethical. Right now, Steinberg faces an uphill battle, since the vast majority of Americans disapprove of using technology to pick a child's cosmetic traits.

"Well, we knew it was going to happen," said Mary Ann Romans in Families.com, "it was just a matter of when." Regardless of how we settle the ethical issue, it seems a shame to go down this road. "I think diversity breeds beauty, literally."

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