Category Archives: Genetics

Moral Nearsightedness

Earlier this month, I took a call that I thought was a perfect example of how “moral nearsightedness” is overcoming American society.

This twenty-something young woman was pregnant out-of-wedlock, “shacking up” with her alleged fiance (they are living with his father), and the fiance doesn’t have enough income to support a wife and child.

But that’s not why she called!!

In fact, when I pointed out the irresponsibility and immaturity of conceiving out of wedlock with a guy incapable of supporting a family, I got back:  “Well, that’s not my question!” (And, by the way, she didn’t want to have a wedding until after the baby was born and she got her figure back in order to wear a white gown).

Her question actually related to her mother.  Apparently, her mommy came to visit and “got it on” with the fiance’s dad….all night.  There were other children (of other family members) in the home when this was happening.

That’s as far as she got when I said: “It’s genetic.”
She responded with:  “What?”
I repeated and expanded: “It’s genetic…having no moral foundation for decisions.  Like mother, like daughter.”

Now that may sound harsh to you, but truth often is, and there was nothing I could do to change anything about this situation.  She was already “shacking up” and pregnant; her mother already had humped the maybe future father-in-law.  Her question was going to be about confronting her mom about this outrageous behavior.  I couldn’t bear to hear her even go there, considering she was the pot and the kettle all by herself.

It’s a shame both of our eyes point only outwards.  It would be a far, far better thing if one of them turned inwards.

My DNA Made Me Do It!

At this point, every news outlet has discussed the conclusions of some researchers from the University of North Carolina.  The researchers insist that three genes “may” play a strong role in determining why some young men raised in rough neighborhoods or deprived families become violent criminals, while others do not.

The research team studied only boys, and used data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health, a U.S. nationally representative sample of about 20,000 adolescents in grades 7 – 12.  They found specific variations in three genes that appeared to be associated with bad behavior, but only when the boys suffered some other stresses.  “But if people with the same gene have a parent who has regular meals with them, then the risk is gone,” said one of the researchers.

Genes give us a range of potential – the interaction of those genes with real life determines the outcome – and it appears like family is everything with respect to raising decent, adjusted, functional children.