Who ever knew a movie staring Jude Law, Uma Therman and Ethan Hawke does not just explore romance and drama but also takes a look into the revolutionizing and weary scientific future our world has yet to see! The movie, GATTACA(standing for the 4 DNA bases-Guanine, Adenine, Thymine, Thymine, Adenine, Cytosine, Adenine), starts with the birth of Vincent Freeman, an ordinary child just like you and me. But unfortunately for him, Vincent falls way below average in his society that revolves around eugenics.
I belonged to a new underclass, no longer determined by social status or the color of your skin. No, we now have discrimination down to a science. –Vincent Freeman in GATTACA
This discrimination that Vincent is referring to is based on ones genetic profile. In the GATTACA world, the creation of a child occurs in a lab, where there parents can choose what genes they want and don’t want their child to inherit, making for one, almost genetically perfect kid. In the movie, they have facilities that resemble bank tellers but are in fact genetic “profilers”. One can bring a strand of hair they found to the facility and receive a print out of that persons genetic profile, along with it stating if that person is Valid(genetically engineered) or invalid(ordinarily created). Because Vincent was not created this way he is forever categorized as In-valid, causing him to have limited options in life, like not getting hired.
I don’t want to give away more of the story, but it goes into deep investigation of what this world, that potentially can one day happen, would be like. It questions the morality and ethics behind genetic modification, profiling and discrimination. It also shows a very depressed world devoid of joy.
In today’s world, we already have genome services similar to the ones in GATTACA. The company 23andMe can create your genetic profile with a swab of your DNA. You can find out what your genetic ancestry is life, what disease you are at risk for, why you like the foods you like and so on. Some people are very hesitant to viewing their genetic profile. after reading this article, of a women who had her genetic profile made through 23andMe, do you think you would want yours made? Why or why not?