In modern society, we are constantly inventing and engineering brand new technology that augments and improves our own experiences and quality of life. This rapid expansion of technology ultimately intrudes into our personal lives and reshapes our daily interactions with other technology and our interactions with other people. The introducing of new technology ultimately reshapes society and the human experience. Many new technologies can actually help people regain a sense of normalcy that they may not have been able to have had before. As such, the evolution of humanity and technology has always been trending to convergence. While humans can better adapt and survive through the use of technology, should we embrace this increasing trend towards the merging of technology and humanity? This is the ethical foundation of transhumanism, a movement which encourages the blending of both man and machine in order to better adapt and improve the human condition. I believe that embracing transhumanism will allow for incredible innovations in humanity, however, this will come at the expense of redefining what it means to be human and may cause several other issues in the transitioning from a “pure” human society to an augmented society. Current Technology Due to the fact that we are currently still developing many of technologies that would allow a transhuman revolution to begin, I will begin by discussing what exactly transhumanism is. A simple definition according to the Oxford English Dictionary defines transhumanism as: “The belief or theory that the human race can evolve beyond its current physical and mental limitations, especially by means of science and technology”.1 As demonstrated by this definition, transhumanism is simply concerned with improving the capabilities and possibilities of human beings, usually through the use of technology and science. Today, there are various technologies that would fall under that categorization. Nowadays, current life-sustaining technologies would be the beginning of transhumanism. By allowing people to overcome their physical and mental limits, current technologies that bring normalcy to those who haven’t had it are improving the lifestyles and quality of life. Technologies that prolong longevity and restore typical human behaviors such as pacemakers, hearing aids, false teeth, glasses, and processes such as Lasik eye surgery. These are the beginning of the foundation for transhumanist practices. According to most consequential ethical theories, practices such as these should be ethically tolerated and in fact, allowed due to the fact that everyone deserves a chance to have an enjoyable life. Utilitarianism would justify the transhumanist restorative technology due to it causing a great number of good to those affected and very little negative consequences. Some transhumanists support the transhumanist movement because they support “eradicat[ing] aging as a cause of death”. 2 Being able to overcome death has always been an earnest human endeavor yet it will fundamentally change what it means to be human, leading us to reconsider what humanity actually is. Secondly, we must consider current technology that improves human function. Examples include technology such as “smart” contacts which allow you to interact with a small screen on your eye for enhanced augmented reality. An article online describes the contact: “The smart contact lens can be controlled using eye movements and blinking, potentially allowing users to take photos with the miniature camera simply by winking or blinking. An antenna would then transmit the image to a companion device, such as a smartphone or tablet.” 3 This technology demonstrates how we can improve our level of convenience in our daily life simply by improving and utilizing our new technology, something which is usually well intended but causes a lasting change between our daily interactions. Ultimately, the technology that restores and even improves biological function will be adopted by society if it becomes easily available and is ultimately useful to improve the quality of life of the individual. Such technology should be fully supported after careful planning to ensure everyone has an opportunity to use this tech if they wish. We currently have implants that can connect to the brain, and contacts that can transmit photos and videos over Bluetooth and WiFi. Should humanity decide to accept transhumanism, to agree that we should blend our humanity with our technology, another question arises: who controls the data needed to operate and transmit these implants and other technology? This is an issue that needs to be considered before we fully adopt and adapt these new technologies, as we need to fully understand the societal and ethical ramifications of releasing such life-changing tools. As we get further into the future, our entire mind may be able to backed-up, our memories can be stored online through cloud servers. When parts of ourselves, our experiences even, can be saved and stored, who is in control of them? While they may be our experiences, we may not own them once they are uploaded or shared. How secure will our minds be backed up? Even today with Samsung’s smart contacts, will Samsung be given access to photos you have taken with their technology? Who really owns what will need to be defined and need to be clear, something which I don’t believe will happen at first, at least not easily. Even currently our data is not easily tracked by us and can be mishandled, as demonstrated by Facebook selling users data to Cambridge Analytical or Verizon selling data to law enforcement agencies. The myriads of contingencies in these details will ultimately require regulation and enforcement and will need the public to be aware of what is exactly happening to themselves. When breakthrough technology is bought, such as prosthetic limbs that the user can “feel” with, they have to be able to not be interfered with, something that may always be a possibility. Another example of how technology is currently changing what it means to be human is the recent news of human gene manipulation. Being able to change the genes of embryos directly demonstrates how technology is reshaping our world. Just within the last couple of months, Chinese scientists had created the first genetically modified human in order to make them immune to the HIV virus. This technology is widely condemned by the medical and scientific community and was condemned by the Chinese government, as well as scientists internationally. While the gene editing recently can be seen as “harmless” and altruistic in theory, in practice, however, the fear among the masses is that allowing gene editing will allow for further reshaping of humans and will cause other unseen issues. Being able to edit genes may make way to increased resistance to diseases, extended longevity, and other numerous things that may reshape our societies. While this may be positive, it also may worsen existing problems and have unforeseen consequences. Gene editing may allow only the wealthy to have gene edited babies, making way to “designer babies”. This is an issue because it only furthers current unethical issues in our society, such as an exuberant wealth gap and poverty. This problem was further elaborated on by the Guardian. An article claims,“The position is summed up by Whitby. ‘History is littered with the evil consequences of one group of humans believing they are superior to another group of humans,’ he said. ‘Unfortunately in the case of enhanced humans, they will be genuinely superior. We need to think about the implications before it is too late’”. 4 This reinforces the idea of superiority and is very similar to racial-driven discrimination, as it may lead to the rise of non-technologically enhanced people being treated as “less” than human, sparking further divides between people and humanity. Others refute this claim by pointing to other examples of technology, such as computers and cell phones. While the technology was originally large, extremely expensive, and ultimately ineffective in terms of today, it eventually became so widespread and easy to create that almost everyone can afford them today. While this may be true, it doesn’t take into account that medicine and other advanced prosthetics are still expensive to manufacture and apply and doesn’t factor in attributes such as longevity enhancing or intelligence augmentation. These other factors make it difficult to compare to external technology such as cell phones. It also doesn’t factor in current medical practices here in the United States, where certain dosages of life-sustaining medicine can cost thousands of dollars and are mostly price regulated by the companies that hold the patents. Introducing adaptive technologies may reinstate eugenics and genetic superiority, further dividing a world that constantly divides itself. While humans are always creating conflict due to differences internally and externally, part of the population will be literally superior due to their improve cognitive and physical abilities. All of these issues contribute to difficulty from most modern technologies transitioning into emerging technology that is widely accepted.