The Natural Lottery and our Genetic Endowments
This chapter concerns primarily with the implications that flow from use of information derived from genetics for making predictions about the futures. It explores the nature of risks to individuals and to groups or communities that seem likely to emerge as unintended consequences of the massive research effort that the promise of genetic discoveries has begun to attract. The chapter focuses on the relationships between genetics and group characteristics and for the luck egalitarians who argue that no one should be burdened because they had bad luck in the natural lottery, a social intervention might provide for genetic enhancement. It discusses the role that developments in genetic research will play in the identification of individuals, including their assignment to the categories that will help determine the kinds of life chances they will have to confront. Much of the preliminary research associated with the Human Genome Project has been focused on efforts to identify the complex functions of genes.