© Christo Komarnitski

Century Marks

Practical solutions: The digging of the Panama Canal was almost prevented by outbreaks of yellow fever and malaria. It wasn’t known at the time that mosquitoes were carriers of these dreaded diseases, and it was even thought that contracting one of these illnesses represented a moral failure. Once the true causes were discovered, practical measures were implemented to ward off the diseases. “Some problems are caused by moral weakness and solved by implementing a strong moral community,” says David Sloan Wilson, yet “all the moralizing in the world” won’t resolve “problems [that] require practical solutions” (Evolution for Everyone, Delta, 2007).


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