Re: Fossils and Pseudoscience

Kathleen Hunt (
17 Jan 1995 19:02:34 GMT

In article <3ffg17$>,
Pat Dooley <> wrote:
>Children have to be taught to walk. Parents spend a lot of time
>holding them upright and encouraging them to take those
>first few steps. In turns out that young babies can swim
>before they can walk and actually have instincts that stop
>them from trying to breath underwater. They lose this ability
>within the first year of life, and have to be taught to swim

I wanted to jump in here to emphasize that children *don't* have to be
taught to walk. Most parents do encourage them a lot, sure, but even if
they don't, the kids will teach themselves to walk anyway. As anyone
who has been around little kids will attest, they show a really
powerful drive to pull themselves up onto their legs and stagger around,
like it's the most fun thing in the world that they could ever dream of.
And pretty soon they get good at it, all by themselves.

Surely you're not arguing that humans aren't naturally bipedal? (I
suspect you drifted into this point accidentally, in the process of
trying to make an analogy with early tendencies toward swimming.)


If we increase the size of the penguin until it is the same height as
the man and then compare the relative brain size, we now find that the
penguin's brain is still smaller. But, and this is the point, it is
larger than it *was*. (Monty Python)