26 thoughts on “Human Evolution

  1. Gregg

    Just put an “htt” in front of it

    I’ve wondered about this on occasion. I would imagine we are still mutating because the engines of mutation haven’t gone away. Didn’t think about the larger population.

    However the effects of bad mutations are mitigated somewhat because of medical science – we can keep those people around long enough to breed. Whereas before they would have been eaten by a saber-tooth tiger. Or stomped by a woolly mammoth because they didn’t move fast enough.

    1. Edward Wright

      That doesn’t mean evolution isn’t occurring. It is, as long as there’s a change in genetic frequency. It simply means that selective pressures have changed.

      In economic terms, it no longer pays for evolution to invest as much in high-performance body plans for outracing saber-tooth mammoths.

      1. Gregg

        “That doesn’t mean evolution isn’t occurring.”

        Where did I say it wasn’t? In fact, I said it was:

        “I would imagine we are still mutating because the engines of mutation haven’t gone away.”

  2. rickl

    Besides government programs like welfare which prevent Darwin from culling the herd, I’ve always wondered about orthodontics.

    In the past, people with seriously deformed teeth and jaws may have had difficulty finding a mate. Now that they can be repaired, two such people can meet and have a child, who should have even worse misshapen teeth and jaws.

  3. Josh Reiter

    I evolved to become the worlds greatest gift to woman. *buffs chest* But it’s actually a cruel fate to be so irresistible. *sigh*

    1. George Turner

      All those models selling their eggs to wealthy couples is sexual selection cranked up to eleven.

    1. Paul Milenkovic

      Do you think we could bring Neanderthal to life by a dating service to concentrate the percentage Neanderthal?

      I mean, this would be perfectly ethical. People who are indeed part Neanderthal could find like mates, if they so desire, to propagate their own kind, which is their hybrid Modern Human-Neanderthal right.

      1. McGehee

        From what I understand, the amount of Neanderthal DNA in those of us that have it, is all in pretty much the same part of the molecule, suggesting it’s a finite set of traits that have been preserved.

        At best we could help spread those traits to segments of the population with less than 4%.

      2. George Turner

        But why would we need everyone painting their bodies and doing crazy jigs at football games?

        Ever since l’affaire de Katherine Webb, everytime the camera zooms in on a someone making a spectacle of themselves in the stands, I’m waiting for Brent Musburger to say something like “Oh, just look at that guy expressing his Neanderthal DNA. Ugga Chucka Ugga Chucka.”

  4. Peterh

    100 years ago, profound stupidity was selected against by survival pressures. Today, not so much. That applies to both genetics and culture. I’m expecting a shock reintroduction of such pressures when reality reasserts itself against libertine excesses and socialist theft.

  5. Fletcher Christian

    Peterh, it’s even worse than that. Compare the stereotypical ghetto-dweller, with 8 kids by 5 different women, with a professional civil engineer with (often) no kids at all and maybe 1-2 of them.

    In the late 20th and early 21st century; responsibility, intelligence and a belief in hard work are contra-survival.

    This isn’t news. C.M. Kornbluth, The Marching Morons, 1963.

  6. Tom Bri

    Plenty of selective pressures. Think of driving while drunk. Anyone stupid and irresponsible enough to do that…

  7. Larry J

    As the article mentioned, there are also people who survive due to advances in medicine who would’ve died young just a few generations ago. Look at the drop in infant mortality in modern societies compared to 50 or 100 years ago. For that matter, look at much the rate of women dying in childbirth or due to complications in pregnancy has dropped in the same timeframe. By surviving what was once fatal, they live to pass on their genes.

  8. mpthompson

    As long as there is an environment for humans to live in, evolution will of course selections to optimize for the environment. However, it’s a slow and plodding process that spans many generations. It seems that ever faster technology changes will drive the shape of humans in the coming centuries. If our great, great grandchildren look and behave greatly differently than us, it will be because of technology, not evolution.

  9. autodidact

    For more interesting reading, I suggest The Decline of Males by Lionel Tiger (yes, that’s his real name). His research indicates that the use of hormone-changing chemicals by a large % of the female population is causing women to select men who are ill-suited to them. After marrying, they may go off the artificial birth control chemicals (which is like that during pregnancy), resume their natural pheremone/hormonal makeup, and find they do not get along with their mate! Dr Tiger’s research was done with a group of chimps. When all the females were put on artificial birth control chemicals, he got entirely confused & frustrated, and sought out other males to mate with! Is it any wonder that since the ready availability of abc, our society has changed (and for the worse, IMO).

    Other changes may be due to the purposeful introduction of chemicals into certain vaccines which affect how the brain operates & makes ppl’s immune system weaker, not stronger. Read something on this recently at http://www.naturalnews.com

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