Scrupuli

blunt essays with sharp points

Shall We Breed Humanzees?

by Scrvpvlvs
Sep 3, 2004 6:26 PM– The very thought of breeding a human-chimpanzee hybrid is abominable to some people, yet it is almost certain to happen. The prospect has generated considerable discussion of the ethics of human-chimpanzee hybrids and whether one must legally recognize a “humanzee” to be a person.

“Modern scientific usage defines two ape families: the family Hylobatidae consisting of 12 species of gibbons, including the Lar and the Siamang, collectively known as the lesser apes, [and] the family Hominidae consisting of Gorillas, Chimpanzees and Bonobos, Orangutans, and Humans, collectively known as the great apes.” [Ape]

“When one looks at the chromosomes of humans and the living great apes, it is immediately apparent that there is a great deal of similarity between the number and overall appearance of the chromosomes across the four different species. [Human and Ape Chromosomes]

Humans and other great apes did not always look so different. “The Miocene apes discovered by Louis Leakey had relatively short arms and still had not developed a simian shelf, indicating with respect to these features that apes have been getting progressively less manlike over millions of years.” [Fix, The Bone Hunters, p. 17]

The world human population differs less genetically from chimps than regional chimp populations differ from one another. That is, genetically speaking it may be fair to call humans a form of highly inbred chimpanzee. Humans and chimpanzees can very likely still interbreed. Members of different ape species often mate in captivity when left together, and the resulting offspring resemble a mix of the parents’ physical characteristics. Humans and chimpanzees are closer in genetic similarity than many species that can interbreed, such as felines, canines, and equines.

Richard Dawkins had some thought provoking words about basing our morality on an arbitrary division between humans and other species: Gaps in the Mind

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1 Comments:

by Blogger Collaboration of Global Citizens
September 07, 2004 6:10 PM–You bring up a very controversial subject!

Some of us think that cloning must be explored further than what it is now! Nonetheless, we need to debate this idea, not with radicals but with objective evidence!

Visit our page if you can, we are trying to improve it!

CGC  

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