If you accept that people are the products of evolution, then you have to have an open mind to the truth. Unfair discrimination exists whether we like it or not; I wouldn't have married a gum-chewing vegetarian.
Science moves with the spirit of an adventure characterized both by youthful arrogance and by the belief that the truth, once found, would be simple as well as pretty.
If someone's liver doesn't work, we blame it on the genes; if someone's brain doesn't work properly, we blame the school. It's actually more humane to think of the condition as genetic. For instance, you don't want to say that someone is born unpleasant, but sometimes that might be true.
I was always very curious about what a scientist's life was like when I was young. Of course, when I was young, you didn't have very many opportunities to find out with no web, TV. I was very lucky: I was born in the city of Chicago and went to the University of Chicago where I actually saw things.
As a child, I lived with being punier than other boys in class. The only consolation was my parents' empathy - they encouraged constant trips to the local drugstore for chocolate milk shakes to fatten me up. The shakes made me happy, but still, all through grammar school, other kids shoved me around.
Spotting a rare bird is never worth the bite of a cur. Once bitten by a German shepherd, I knew that I preferred cats, even if they are bird-killers. Life is long enough for more than one chance at a rare bird.
Here at the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, we have genetically rearranged various viruses and bacteria as part of our medical research. In fact, we have been able to create entirely new types of DNA molecules by splicing together the genetic information from different organisms - recombinant DNA.
The ever quickening advances of science made possible by the success of the Human Genome Project will also soon let us see the essences of mental disease. Only after we understand them at the genetic level can we rationally seek out appropriate therapies for such illnesses as schizophrenia and bipolar disease.
I have a son, who is a... not an ordinary form of schizophrenia, but clearly, cannot take care of himself. And the great fear of then, of all parents is, when the parents die, who takes care of your child? And the answer is: they become homeless.
Take young researchers, put them together in virtual seclusion, give them an unprecedented degree of freedom and turn up the pressure by fostering competitiveness.
Ever since we achieved a breakthrough in the area of recombinant DNA in 1973, left-wing nuts and environmental kooks have been screaming that we will create some kind of Frankenstein bug or Andromeda Strain that will destroy us all.
I have an odd theory on happiness, and it bothers people. My general theory is that happiness is a reward for an animal doing what it should be doing. So if a horse runs, it feels happy. Or if you are too thin, you can't be happy, because evolution wants you to be tense and anxious, trying to wake up in the morning looking for food.
One could not be a successful scientist without realizing that, in contrast to the popular conception supported by newspapers and mothers of scientists, a goodly number of scientists are not only narrow-minded and dull, but also just stupid.
We should govern our actions by assuming that people are more good than bad. Whereas, most of our social policies dictate that people are more bad than good. That you know if you do something, it'll be seized by the rich to exploit the poor.
If we could honestly promise young couples that we knew how to give them offspring with superior character, why should we assume they would decline? Common sense tells us that if scientists find ways to greatly improve human capabilities, there will no stopping the public from happily seizing them.
I do think one success of Northern Europe, which the United States came from, was its willingness to accept innovation in business practices like Adam Smith and the whole Enlightenment. It essentially made the merchant class free instead of controlled by the king and aristocracy. That was essential.
If you succeed with your first dream, it helps. You know, people trust you, possibly, for the second one. They give you a chance to play out your second one.
My parents made it clear that I should never display even the slightest disrespect to individuals who had the power to let me skip a half grade or move into more challenging classes. While it was all right for me to know more about a topic than my sixth-grade teacher had ever learned, questioning her facts could only lead to trouble.
It is no coincidence that so many religious beliefs date back to times when no science could possibly have accounted satisfactorily for many of the natural phenomena inspiring scripture and myths.
I don't want 100 different cures of cancer. I want, you know, give me five. So if you had, you know, five medicines, you could do away with 90 percent of cancer. That's sort of my objective. I think we're going to do it.