For some people, the question is already moot. In the April 27 issue of the New Yorker, writer Margaret Talbot explores the issue of brain medications in "Brain Gain: The underground world of 'neuroenhancing' drugs."
She writes: "In recent years Adderall and Ritalin, another stimulant, have been adopted as cognitive enhancers: drugs that high-functioning, overcommitted people take to become higher-functioning and more overcommitted."
She tells her story in some part through a recent Harvard graduate named Alex. He makes a compelling case for what can be accomplished with a little help.
Some neuroscientists and ethicists have already answered the bigger question among themselves. Says a recent blog post from Times staff writer Melissa Healy: "Pop a smart pill? Why not, says a group of neuroethicists"
-- Tami Dennis
Photo: Ritalin -- the little helper for people with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and overworked, over-stressed students -- is going mainstream.
Credit: Keith Beaty/Toronto Star/ZUMA Press