Friday, August 31, 2012

Mapping the human political genome

(San Francisco Business Times subscription required for full column.)
As the 2012 presidential election season heats up to near-tropical temperatures, voters are listening to the candidates, weighing the issues and shedding their sweaters. On Nov. 5, the first Tuesday of the month, but certainly not the last, engaged citizens will march to their neighborhood polling places on their own free will and cast their votes according to their genetic codes. “Wait,” you say, “don’t you mean ‘according to their conscience’ or something like that?” No, I do not. A new report from the Land Down Under — or, more succinctly, Australia — concludes that genetics play a role in personal politics. Whether it is a leading role, a supporting role or a cameo appearance remains a subject of debate. “Hold on,” you say, “you’re telling me that my politics, like my eye color, are in my DNA?”

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