I was listening to a radio show today that was talking about a possible new discovery of genes specifically associated with Autism. Whether this is useful information or not (obviously at least some genes are involved, since having a brain is genetic :-) is not what I was interested in. Instead I was interested in the fact that some things that are genetic and which happen to have some difficulties in life associated with them are seen as perfectly normal. For example having white skin that burns easily, or being gay, or being a tall woman, or a short man, are not considered “diseases” by most in the scientific community, while other genetic traits with similarly challenging complications are considered diseases, and people who have them are generally treated as being “wrong” in some way.
Which led me to asking, to no one in particular, “What is it going to take for society in general to stop looking at all the different kinds of genetic diversity as being bad, and start looking at diversity, and somewhat rare genes, as being important for the health of our species? What do people need to discover for them to appreciate individual’s uniqueness? When will people start looking for the benefits of the not-so-average traits, such as an extreme ability to focus on logical problems (Autism), or the ability to focus intently on the most exciting and challenging thing around (ADD), that humans arrive on the Earth with?”
And do you, yourself, have a rare trait that others might not have appreciated as much as evolution does?