RE: Allowing Evolution To Take It's Course

David Musick (
Tue, 17 Dec 96 10:04:58 UT

Chris Hind related a story about saving the life of someone with respitory
problems, caused by his genetics. Now he's worried that he's "cheated
evolution" by allowing "bad" genes to survive and possibly propogate, if the
person he saved has any children.

First of all, whether genes are "good" or "bad" depends entirely on the
environment they're in. A long time ago, that kid would have had pretty bad
genes; actually he would have had pretty *dead* genes, because the environment
of a long time ago was inhospitable to his type of problem. Now the
environment that humans are living in is quite different than what they lived
in a while ago, and it can support genetic deviations which previous
environments wouldn't. The universe can maintain biological systems now (such
as people with cerebral palsy, diabetes, hemophilia, etc.) which would have
been automatically cast off a while ago. There's nothing wrong with saving
people like that. Besides, with genetic engineering, we will be able to get
rid of whatever undesirable genes we want to. We are not "cheating

-(here's where I break into a rant against one of my favorite enemy memes;
it's not directed at Chris or anyone else here -- just at all the idiots out
there who think that humans are interfering with Nature.)-

We *are* letting evolution take it's course. It is absolutely, completely and
in all other ways totally impossible for us to interfere with the process of
evolution in any way whatsoever! How could we *not* let evolution take it's
course? We are parts of that very process! We are not magically outside the
system! Everything we do is *100% natural.* The word, "unnatural", points to
nothing; it is absolutely *impossible* for anything to be "unnatural".
Nature is *everything*.

Our technology is as natural as a coral reef or a termite mound -- it's what
humans *do*; playing around with things and figuring out what we can do with
them and improving things for ourselves comes so naturally and instinctively
to humans that it is impossible to prevent humans from developing technology.
The tools we create are as much a part of us as our fingernails. It is in our
nature to take advantage of our environments and use whatever resources we
find or develop for our own benefit. All living creatures do this -- every
living creature snaps up whatever resources it needs, whenever the resources
are available. Technology develops because humans have such a fascination
with each other and a strong tendency to mimic each other. This same sort of
activity occurs in bee hives, this intense fascination and mimicry of each
other, and the bees have developed a fairly advanced culture and an
impressively elaborate technology of building hives and honey combs, which is
passed on through each generation of bees.

We are *natural*! We are not some sort of freaks, cast into the natural world
from the outside. We came from nature; we *are* nature, in a very intimate
way, and there's nothing we can do to seperate ourselves from nature. Nature
is constantly changing itself into new forms. We are a part of that process
of transformation. If anyone is "unnatural", it is all the idiots who want to
"go back to nature". Nature is not so stagnant! Nature continues to press
onward, building up greater and greater complexity, continually transforming
itself. Nature itself is basically a process of technology, a process of
building on what came before and making everything more and more elaborate.
Our technological development perfectly mirrors the evolution of life.
Technology and culture are constantly engaged in the processes of variation
and selection. Humanity is human's technology and culture, and it is a very
large and complex living organism. As far as I'm concerned, those who are
against technology are basically against Humanity itself (actually, I think
they are just misguided; they have a great deal of anger and resentment
against something and they are wanting to be rebellious and they just happen
to buy into the anti-technology memes. Other rebellious and discontented
people buy into some other anti-__ meme.).

rant, rant; <pant>, <pant>

There. I feel much better now.

- David Musick

- Question Idiocy -