Re: Polar Bear Challenge for AAH opponents

Pat Dooley (
Mon, 12 DEC 94 00:43:44 -0500

Eric S. <> writes:

>I fail to see how the burden of proof should lie with the opponents of the
>AAH. From my experiences with human osteology and anatomy, I would have
>to (accurately?) say that there are many more similarities between humans
>and terrestrial creatures (Pan trogolodytes) than there are between humans
>and aquatic creatures (polar bear?). If my assumption that we more resemble
>chimps and other terrestrial creatures than we do aquatic creatures is
>correct, then I think the burden of proof would lie with the proponents
>of the AAH. I also agree with Phil Bigelow, in that, it is basically
>pointless to argue over an issue that is impossible to prove.

The polar bear argument is a straw man argument. The polar bear is no
more aquatic than a tiger. It's hunting tecniques are terrestrial for
the most part. If it does enter the water to hunt, it is usually a
lunge at a seal coming up to breath. If you claim that polar bears
are aquatic then you could make the same claim about all those
salmon catching bears.

Since humans and chimpanzees share a common ancestor, one would
expect them to be very similar in general anatomy. But there
are a number of major differences, and many of those differences
have only been observed in aquatic or wallowing mammals. They
include - subcutaneous fat, loss of acropine glands, hairlessness,
salt excretion mechanisms, descended larynx, ability to swim
and dive (esp. compared to other primates although human
diving ability is almost in the aquatic class).