Savannah State University Extending Human Beings Lifespan Discussion

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In 2013, Google announced that it was forming a new company called “Calico,” with the goal of coming up with new ways to extend life and combat the deleterious effects of aging. Read the article on this company and possible approaches at the CNN website.

Imagine that average life expectancy rises to say, 140 years, and that the added years are healthy and vigorous for most people. For the Discussion, consider the effects that this life extension would have on individuals and society.

Answer the following questions for the Discussion:

How would this change in longevity affect individuals and their relationships? Would marriages be able to last 110 to 120 years? Or would divorce become even more common, with people re-marrying and having multiple sets of children during their lives? Explain your thinking.

How would an increase in longevity affect education and careers? For many years, workers expected to stay at the same company throughout their careers. Over the last couple decades that has changed, with people changing careers more than once in their lives, either out of interest or necessity. What if the average person could expect to have a work-life that lasted 90 or 100 years? Does it make sense to go to college once in life? To have only one or two careers? Explain your thinking.

How would society change? For example, if people retired at 110 years rather than at 70 years, how would this affect the number of jobs for new workers just coming out of high school or college? If people live longer, would that prevent younger people from rising in careers and professions? For example, if professional athletes could remain competitive into their sixties, would it make sense for any young person to try to become a professional athlete?


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