Just for Bertvan

Fri, 1 Oct 1999 23:55:59 EDT


Hi Susan,

I'm not quite sure why you sent me this. If, in fact erectus is a descendant
of afairensis, and sapiens is a descendant of erectus. (Since obtaining DNA
from Neanderthal, some have questioned that Sapiens is even a descendent of
Neanderthal.) But if Afairensis did somehow turn into Sapiens, that is no
proof that it happened by random mutation and natural selection. I don't
deny that some sort of evolution may have taken place. I just don't believe
random mutation and natural selection had much to do with it. Directed
selection should be many times faster than natural selection. Yet, after
centuries of selective breeding of dogs, nothing has been porduced but
different shaped dogs. After bombarding fruit flies with radiation for a
century, nothing has been produced but some deformed fruit flies. I say
let's forget "random mutation and natural selection" and try to figure what
really might have happened. In my opinion there are several possibilities.
Horizontal transfer of DNA, as is being pursued by panspermia. Some kind of
symbiosis, as is favored by Margulus. Or the possibility that DNA itself is
alive and creative, as is being pursued by Shapiro. None of these
possibilities could be construed as Neo Darwinism.