This Day In History: 1953-04-25

1953: Francis Crick (left) and James Watson publish “Molecular Structure of Nucleic Acids: A Structure for Deoxyribose Nucleic Acid” describing for the first time the double helix structure of DNA and making the modern study of genetics possible. Crick, who died in 2004, believed that eugenics was a goal that society would eventually embrace, stating, “I would be astonished if, in the next 100 or 200 years, society did not come round to the view that they would have to try to improve the next generation….” Watson, who at this writing in 2020 is still alive, was in recent years stripped of his honors and positions for refusing to back down from his numerous statements expressing his belief that the human races are not equal and that eugenic improvement is a worthy goal.

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1953-04-25