Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics

, Volume 22, Issue 5, pp 473–484 | Cite as

Just Ignore It? Parents and Genetic Information

  • Simo Vehmas


This paper discusses whether prospectiveparents ought to find out about their geneticconstitution for reproductive reasons. It isargued that ignoring genetic information can bein line with responsible parenthood or perhapseven recommendable. This is because parenthoodis essentially an unconditional project inwhich parents ought to commit themselves tonurturing any kind of child. Besides, thetraditional reasons offered for theunfortunateness of impairments and the tragicfate of families with disabled children are notconvincing. Other morally problematic outcomesof genetics, such as discrimination againstindividuals with impairments, and limiting freeparental decision making, are alsoconsidered.

genetic information ignorance impairment parenthood reproduction responsibility 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Simo Vehmas
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Practical PhilosophyUniversity of HelsinkiFinland

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