Once upon a time I saw an interesting question posed in a blog about gay rights. It was in response to some new research which pops up every now and again which examined the origin of homosexuality - i.e. what biological influences lead to it.
In it, however, was an interesting question: if a drug was developed which would change your sexual preferences back to being "straight", would you take it?
The results were mixed, but a decent number of people commented that, well, wouldn't that just make life so much easier - to be normal.
This is also coming up a lot in the transgender thread - this underlying idea as to whether we should be trying to fix peoples minds or bodies. Sure, at the moment on that issue the major thing we're capable of is fixing the body. But here's my concern: at some point, we'll probably be able to fix the mind.
Is it even morally appropriate to consider this though? My big concern is, that it isn't, but because human societies already has a disturbing propensity to murder those who's ideas don't fit, that we'll de facto force it on people anyway.
There was a piece related to this idea in Nature
, who as their closing articles take some recent science and have a writer craft a piece describing the future of it (and it's usually pretty god damn awesome as a result). One was a discussion of an even more far-fetched idea - being able to eliminate undesireable habits. In it, a man who signs up for an online dating service has it returned to him that because of his interest in model trains he falls fairly far outside the statistical norm. for dateable population. In response, he undergoes a treatment which marks the brain areas most associated with his interest in model training and has them artificially blocked - ending his fascination and returning him to "normal" status.
So what does D&D think? Is our future destined to be a surprisingly bland, and morally darkened society wherein people can literally correct their brains to whatever is normal? Or will we go the other way - after all - if a treatment to switch your sexuality existed, it would be surprisingly easy to rebel by moving against the grain - going from straight to gay and so on.
tl dr; Are we but in a transitional phase of technology, where soon science is simply going to let social pressure dictate normalcy and force everyone else to chemically correct to be acceptable? Or will the same power be used to put one finger on each hand up towards the bigots?