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THEORIES OF HUMAN EVOLUTION

alain chabot achabot at cat.ustanne.ns.ca
Wed Sep 28 09:51:12 EST 1994


On Sat, 24 Sep 1994 17:26:12 GMT, 
Jonathan Paul Carson  <jpc4e at dayhoff.med.Virginia.EDU> wrote:


snip snip

>There is some criticism directed at the establishment of more complex
>phylogenetic trees, because the criteria of determining which
>species are "more primitive" are a bit arbitrary.  Also, it is not
>easy to *definitively* draw a map of the branching of species,
>because we do not have many (or any) protein or DNA sequences
>from tens of millions of years ago!  However, on a small scale, 
>this seems to shed light on things nicely.

I wish we could ban "primitive" in this context. If we and che chimps split 
off a few millions years ago it does not mean that *we* evolved and *they* 
remained primitive. There are no primitive organisms on this planet now. 
All are modern in the sense that they are adapted to living *NOW*. That 
goes for your dog, the maple tree in your backyard or the Strep bacterium 
that makes me miserable now.

Alain




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