14 thoughts on “Growing A Neanderthal

  1. Ryan Olcott

    He probably had to do this interview and put that statement out there so he’d stop getting so many emails from volunteers ;)

  2. CT

    If one were to “create” a Neanderthal, what would one do with him/her? Where would it live? Would it have the right to self determination? I guess what I’ve getting at is: would it be treated as a human or an animal or as something in between?

    1. Karl Hallowell

      Well, I imagine it would have all the same rights other human babies have for the locale. That could range from standard full level of freedom to abject slavery.

    2. Der Schtumpy

      That’s part of the ethics of human cloning.

      If you ‘create’ a person, in a lab, in a petri dish, does the lab or creator ‘own’ that creation, or is it a free individual?

      1. Daver

        Well, my feeling is that the lab no more owns the creation than a parent owns their child. Obviously I am not a lawyer.

  3. Der Schtumpy

    Daver,
    I personally don’t disagree at ALL with that.

    But a company that has invested $3M, $4M or $10M in a project would most likely disagree. They’ve spent M’s, to see IF they can clone a prehistoric being, isn’t going to be thinking, “…someday, Little ‘Cavey’ here will go out and make his way in the world, good luck Son!”, the same way a biological parent would. It’s not the same mind set parents have. It’s much more a situation of breeding cattle or growing a crop, or that of creating a hybrid animal. ClonGroCo LLC is in it for the profit. Maybe somebody has a theory that there were natural cancer killing cells in Neanderthals DNA, or even Cro-Magnons DNA.

    Cancer patients would want that studied.

    I’ve read that part of the ethical debate goes all the way back to the Emancipation Proclamation. We know we can’t own a person in the United States. But is a cloned, laboratory grown, Neanderthal / Cro-Mag hybrid a ‘person’ in the sense that Negroes were in 1863. And don’t forget that the debate THEN circled around that very question. There were plenty of people who considered Negroes very smart animals, but NOT human in the sense that white skinned Europeans were.

    And with the way courts work these days, who the h3ll knows what they’d say.

    1. Larry J

      Point 1: Humanity doesn’t exactly have a good track record when it comes to dealing with people considered as inferior.

      Point 2: If they want to experiment with reviving an extinct species, there are better choices than a hominid who will likely live for decades. What are the chances that it would be born with birth defects? What if it lacks the mental ability to function in modern society? Who will take care of the being for his/her full life? Will he/she be condemned to a life of solitude or will he/she have the opportunity to fall in love and mate? Will he/she be the only one of the species or will others be created, and to what purpose?

      1. McGehee

        It would be just our luck if an American lab produces a Neanderthal, it would grow up to become president.

        And be better at it than some I could name…

        1. Daver

          Irrelevant, of course, but I wonder just how smart Neanderthal were. The last I read, their tools didn’t show much sign of change until just about the time they would have come into contact with Cro Magnon, but their brain cases were roughly the same size as modern man’s (possibly larger).

          1. McGehee

            Some relatively recent research seems to show that while their tools didn’t change much, they involved fairly sophisticated techniques to manufacture. I wonder if they stuck to what they had because they were the apex predator for most of their existence.

            When that fact changed, with the arrival of the Cro, their practices changed. That suggests they might have been more adaptable than many have assumed. Recent DNA evidence also shows the N didn’t go extinct in the standard way; they interacted with the Cro and were uleimately assimilated. The last full-blooded N died as a member of a Cro community, probably in a camp populated in part by his or her grandchildren.

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