As we look toward the future, we must also look to that past to make sure that we do no back the same mistakes, especially when we talk about it from an ethical perspective. We do not want to cause harm, but we also want people to understand what we are saying as scientists, or at least that is what I was always told. Then I bumbled my way into reading The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot.
This is one of the stories of science going wrong. As someone involved in science, I believe that these are things that must be discussed to not happen again. The story starts with how the first-ever human cell line was discovered and then is a train wreck from there. This book goes into the African American population’s distrust of the health care system, which stems from racism and lack of science literacy. It takes this abstract idea that most people have about the ethics behind science and then makes it much more real by adding a face. If you are interested in science in any way, I would consider this a must-read. We have to learn from the past mistakes to make significant innovations in the future.