Re: Fly Gene

From: Dr. David Campbell <>
Date: Mon Jun 06 2005 - 13:34:38 EDT

Human behavior has a much larger volitional component than fly
behavior, so claims that "my genes made me do it" are definitely
suspect. An additional complication is that the genetics of fly
sexuality have some significant differences from humans-in us, having a
functional Y makes a male; in flies, having only one X makes a male.
The particular issue of sexuality has so much controversy and efforts
at self-justification that I am hesitant to accept claims in the field.

At the same time, genes undoubtably have extensive influences on our
behavior. Christianity asserts that humans have an innate inclination
to do wrong, so having a genetic inclination is certainly not proof
that something is OK. Different genetic influences currently are
regarded differently. Some are generally accepted as neutral. Others
are seen as genetic diseases, physical ailments that have no moral
significance but that we should try to cure medically. Yet others are
seen as giving someone heightened vulnerability to a particular
problem, so that they need particular help in this regard. An example
of this is the apparent genetic predisposition to alcoholism (though
there is some controversy about the genetics, I believe).

Dr. David Campbell
425 Scientific Collections Building
Department of Biological Sciences
Biodiversity and Systematics
University of Alabama, Box 870345
Tuscaloosa AL 35487-0345  USA
Received on Mon Jun 6 13:35:48 2005

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.8 : Mon Jun 06 2005 - 13:35:49 EDT