Aren’t you worried about releasing genetic information about yourself?

Nope, and there are several reasons for this. The FASTA sequences I list are the same for everyone, and my decision to tell people whether or not I test as more or less likely to have a trait relies on people to understand two things: First, as 23andme.com makes clear the research behind the various conditions varies in reliability and accuracy. Second, genetics really aren’t destiny. All these genetic markers show is that I MIGHT have a greater, lesser, or typical risk of having certain tendencies in certain environments. For example, I am revealing to the world that under the research available at 23andme.com I have a somewhat greater likelihood of becoming addicted to heroin. This does not particularly worry me in any way because I don’t do or plan to do heroin. And, more tangentially, I actually found most of the results I received from 23andme.com to be surprisingly reassuring. Turns out, I don’t have the “evil gene” as proposed by Dr. Hibbard on The Simpsons.

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