Re: First Family and AAT

Alex Duncan (
11 Oct 1995 01:18:14 GMT

In article <45cl7o$> Tom Clarke, writes:

>>aquatic existence was a quadruped when it began its aquatic foray (w/ the
>>exception of aquatic birds). They all remained quadrupeds or began to
>>converge on fish in overall body shape and locomotion. Why would the
>>early aquatic hominid have been any different? In other words, if
>>becoming a biped is such a wonderful adaptation to an aquatic existence,
>>why aren't polar bears, walruses, alligators, mososaurs and otters all
>I will try a rhetorical device to show the vacuousness of this argument.
>To the best of anyone's knowledge, every tetrapod that ever transitioned
>from an arboreal to a terrestrial environment ultimately became a
>quadruped. Why would the early proto-hominid have been any different?
>In other words why aren't chimpanzees and gorillas bipedal?

Well, it seems you got the point of my argument. AATer's are always
asking "if bipedalism is so wonderful, how come chimps aren't bipedal?"
This certainly reveals some lack of knowledge about the way evolution
works. But it is also just plain bad argument, as I was trying to point
out by turning it around.

Alex Duncan
Dept. of Anthropology
University of Texas at Austin
Austin, TX 78712-1086