Consider popular wisdom about genes and DNA. Just as most peole think scientists havefigured out how the brain works, so too they think scientists have figured out how DNA works. By my casual observation, most nonscientists—and some scientists as well—think the blueprint from which every living organism was formed is written on that individual’s genome in the language of genes. Accordingly, geese honk because they have the honk gene, and hyperactive dogs yap because they have the hyperactive-dog gene. Likewise, by this popular view people who can sing or whistle received these abilities by receiving the corresponding genes. The master template for specifying all our attributes became public with the publishing of the human genome, supposedly, so all that remain is to finish the task of assigning traits to genes and to empower very person to read and interpret his or her own personal blueprint.
Coming from that viewpoint, most of us would be shocked to know the actual state of ignorance with respect to DNA. (p. 271) More.
See also: Doug Axe on fear of critical thinking in science
Note: No news blogging till this evening. O’Leary for News’s other alternate day job.
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