I have two of my previous posts saved...here is one.
Beginning with the first human colonization of the Australian continent around 46,000 years ago, and the subsequent prompt extinction of most of Austrailia's former giant marsupials and other large animals, every human colonization of a land mass formerly lacking humans...has been followed by a wave of extinction of large animals that had evolved without fear of humans and were easy to kill, or else succumbed to human-associated habitat changes, introduced pest species, and diseases.
Interesting. It seems that humans are indeed the disease that A. Smith dubbed us as in "The Matrix"!
I would be interested in finding out if other animals are as destructive with their environment as humans have been. It seems that our evolution into the 'inventive, efficient and skilled hunters' we are (were) is a double-edged sword, as is our tendency toward over indulgence when it comes to consuming just about anything. The more there is, the more we seem to consume. And Diamond states that this is not a current affair.
Just prior to the above quote, Diamond talks about past societies that have been responsible for creating their own environmental problems, offering the Native Hawiians, Maori and Native Americans as some examples. Ironically, modern "American and Australian whites" have gone to the extreme with this information as justification for usurping the land from these indigenous people. I say Ironic of course because look what these same people are doing today.
On the opposite extreme, the indigenous people try to paint a pretty picture of their history, stating that they were "wise stewards" of the land and were absolutely NOT responsible for any such abuse and label the 'whites' position as a simple case of racism. Of course and as usual, the truth lies somewhere in between. The problem, Diamond asserts, is that both these groups view past societies as "fundamentally different from...modern world peoples". Our means may be different, but the results are not. With all our knowledge we are just not a prudent species, even when it comes to our own survival.
Strong evidence now shows that an earlier "eden-like environmentalism" was not the case. Diamond asserts that the modern conception of indigenous people being the meticulous caretakers of the land they inhabited should not be a justification for treating these people fairly, for it creates the implication that "it would be ok to mistreat them" if this is not the case. His final statement is pretty straight forward: "It is morally wrong for one people to dispossess, subjugate, or exterminate another people". Seems reasonable.
The one thing of which I am positive is that there is much of which to be negative - Mr. P.Edited by: misterpessimistic at: 6/7/05 11:27 pm
The pain in hell has two sides. The kind you can touch with your hand; the kind you can feel in your heart...Scorsese's "Mean Streets"
I came to kick ass and chew Bubble Gum...and I am all out of Bubble Gum - They Live, Roddy Piper