Imagine a world where humanity becomes better. Better in social context and better in biological content. That was and is the promise of the progressive movement. The social context is where we usually spend our time as we deal with progressives. They begin by presenting the Christian with the theodicy dilemma (“How can a good God allow suffering?”) and then proceed to provide for a proposed government which will alleviate suffering through the elimination of income disparity, health care disparity, and international power disparity. Progressives believe that they have an available solution to the theodicy that Christianity cannot provide. They have a good government.
But Christians have held sway in the biological arena. With the difference being that we both understand and accept the inherent individual dignity of the human being, Christians are able to effectively attack the eugenics agenda that still holds sway in the progressive bioethics world.
Of course not all progressive bioethicists hold to the eugenics agenda. (See Undue Risk: Secret State Experiments on Humans.) And the progressive world often deals in bioethical areas outside of human concerns, such as food supply issues (genetic crop engineering and its potential impact on food availability), in a more visible fashion.
Yet Hannah Zale explains that
“progressive bioethics” is best understood as the application of the scientific method to policymaking, emphasizing data-driven decision making and transparent methodologies.
This and similar definitions of “ethics” which leave the matter in the simple world of pragmatism and “science” (whatever she means by that) we still have language which cannot automatically release us from the issue of eugenics. Without a moral foundation in Christian theism the chains remain.
Ronald Bailey raises the divisions in the movement to some clarity. The progressives are divided on matters such as nanotech and again often come to conclusions found in practical matters. To their credit, though, the concern of individual rights is paramount to some. Yet we see this as a half-way point as “rights” are seen by progressives as coming from the collective and the government; rights do not proceed from God. Again, we have an opportunity to move the Christian ethic through the various channels with a much higher level of security and sanctity.
As we develop curriculum for adults, let us not forget the children. Curriculum for education — for home schools, for secondary, and of course for college, are equally imperative. The battle rages on. Release the hounds!