Highly religious Americans more skeptical of human enhancements such as brain implants, gene editing
|Humanity may be on the cusp of a variety of innovations – including brain chip implants, gene editing and exoskeletons with built-in artificial intelligence – that could allow people to dramatically enhance human health and abilities. But many Americans, especially those who are highly religious and identify with certain Christian traditions, express discomfort with these possibilities, according to a new Pew Research Center analysis.|
For example, when asked how they would feel about computer chip brain implants possibly being used on a wide scale for faster and more accurate information processing, a majority of U.S. adults with a high level of religious commitment (81%) say this would be “meddling with nature and crosses a line we should not cross,” compared with 50% of Americans who have a low level of religious commitment.
Among particular religious groups, White evangelical Protestants are more skeptical than others on this question. Roughly eight-in-ten White evangelicals say that widespread chip implants in the brain would constitute unacceptable meddling with nature, while about two-thirds of White non-evangelical Protestants, Black Protestants and Catholics take this view. Religiously unaffiliated people, meanwhile, are more accepting than Christians of the developing technologies covered in the analysis.