“It is the burden of the dead to remind the living of what they have lost... You can put a single point into any of your S.P.E.C.I.A.L. attributes, and you also gain reputation with the Boomers and the Powder Gangers for your... destructive tendencies, but you lose reputation with the NCR and Caesar's Legion.”— In-game description
Doing this before obtaining the platinum chip avoids being vilified by both the NCR and Legion and allows both unique armor suits and grenade launchers to be available.
Behind the scenes
The name is a play on the phrase White Man's Burden, originating in a poem by Rudyard Kipling which, in a tongue-in-cheek manner, espouses imperialism and white superiority.
The SPECIAL point must be added. If you have them maxed out, then you will not be able to continue. [verified]
FIX: use the console command cam, it will just close the menu and you'll be able to continue.
FIX: With Old World Blues, you can transportalponder! back to Big MT and then back with getting the perks. Can only be done if missile has been fired at someone, however, Dry Wells and The Long 15 will not be accessible.