The latest issue of The Economist has a provocative essay on Darwinism asking if Charles Darwin’s insights can be used profitably by policymakers. You can read it online here.
“America … executes around 40 people a year for murder. Yet it still has a high murder rate. Why do people murder each other when they are almost always caught and may, in America at least, be killed themselves as a result?” it asks.
It goes on to ask why men still earn more than women 40 years after the feminist revolution and why racism persists.
“Traditionally, the answers to such questions, and many others about modern life, have been sought in philosophy, sociology, even religion. But the answers that have come back are generally unsatisfying. They describe, rather than explain. They do not get to the nitty-gritty of what it truly is to be human. Policy based on them does not work. This is because they ignore the forces that made people what they are: the forces of evolution.” it says.
The essay is not proposing some new theory of eugenics or related nonsense — it just lays out interesting areas where human behavior may be explained by evolution and asks if this could help inform public policy.