Eugenics. On the one hand, it always and fairly calls the Nazis to mind nowadays. On the other hand, we’ve all seen Idiocracy. On the gripping hand, it always seems just about impossible, even now, to disentangle the whole thing from racism.
IQ-related eugenics might be a solution to a nonproblem anyway, see the Flynn Effect. And genetic engineering might render the whole thing moot within our lifetimes – no need to “cull” the “inferior” if we can tweak their offspring’s DNA just a bit. They’ll still be the same color and everything else, just smarter and healthier than they might have been otherwise.
And then there’s the argument that it is simply hubristic to presume we know what heredity is best for our descendants anyway. Maybe, in terms of long-term survival and thriving of the human race, high IQ isn’t quite all it’s cracked up to be. There’s even controversy over what IQ measures, or whether it measures anything important or relevant.
As well as whether environment plays a greater role than heredity. I read in The Bell Curve Wars that a lot of Third-World countries have raised their average IQ a full standard deviation since WWII, without any changes in their gene-pools – it’s all down to improved public education, health, sanitation and nutrition. Those are more sensible things to focus on, aren’t they?
Still, heredity is a real thing, and it is simply a Bad Thing for kids to be born with hereditary mental retardation and/or physical/health defects if that is preventable.
For my part, I’ve been going back and forth on this question for decades. You can tell. On balance, I come down on the anti- side.