Fixing Problems, Not Treating Them

(Photograph by Patrick Pleul/Picture Alliance/Getty Images.d)

Dear Reader (Including people who have previously been left out of the “Dear Reader” gag),

Let’s start with some good news: It looks like there’s a vaccine for malaria.

This is huge. Huge.

Claims that half of all humans who ever lived died from malaria are probably overstated. But a lot of people have been killed by malaria.

So many people have been killed by malaria that it has bent the course of not just history, but human evolution.

The prevalence of sickle cell anemia—a disease that killed my sister-in-law last December—has to do with the fact that inheriting just one sickle-cell gene provides added protection against malaria (you get the disease if you get the gene from both parents). Sadly, if you have…

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