Climate Change Philosopher: Genetically Engineer Babies To Save Planet

October 05, 2015Oct 05, 2015

A paper co-authored by philosopher Matthew Liao back in 2012 is getting attention again with its assertion that we should genetically engineer our babies to reverse oncoming climate change.


Gizmodo's Meanwhile in the Future's podcast has delved more deeply into his proposals:

One, engineer humans to have better night vision so we don't have to use as much electricity generated by Earth-killing fossil fuels to see at night. Side effect? Worse day vision.

Two, make humans allergic to red meat so that they don't eat methane-belching cows and other polluting livestock. Side effect? People eating red meat anyway and collapsing in hives, stomach aches, and anaphylactic shock.

Three, make people shorter. Short people use less food and water and require less fabric to keep themselves warm. That means we vertically challenged folk are already doing our part to save Mother Earth. Side effect? Millions of tons of rotting food on the top shelves.

Four, altering people's brains to make them want to have fewer children. Liao claims smarter people have fewer kids, so we need to give people lots of Ritalin and Modafinil so their cognitive abilities increase. Side effects? Plenty.

Five, altering people so they have more empathy and are less likely to want to squish each other with massive carbon footprints. Liao wants to achieve this by giving people more oxytocin and seratonin and decreasing their testosterone, because apparently testosterone is the source of badness in this world.