Re: Natural Selection - Question

J. Moore (
Tue, 24 Jan 95 15:51:00 -0500

Gs> Brian Doyle ( wrote:
Gs> > If a species forces another species into extinction,
Gs> > i.e. Humans hunting animals, either by pollution
Gs> > or other conventional means, into extinction,
Gs> > Is this considered Natural Selection??

Gs> I'm going to go out on a limb and say no. I look at Natural
Gs> Selection in a more positive light. Characteristics are selected in,
Gs> not selected out. If some animals tunnel underground, protecting
Gs> themselves from human hunters, the "tunnelers" might be selected in.

Gs> Does that make sense?

Gs> Gregg
Gs> Greggory Senechal
Gs> Carleton University
Gs> Anthropology

No. ;-) It's "Natural Selection" all right, no matter how "unnatural"
we might think of it. It's no different really than, say, a hurricane
or two wiping out a small, nearly extinct population.

And I would also think of natural selection with different words than
you use (the "in" or "out", or "selection for" [a similar phrasing]).
Natural selection works only by basically wiping out organisms; it
"selects" by not "allowing" effective raising of young (at any stage of
that process) (and my quote marks are proliferating because of the
inherent problems and baggage associated with words like "allow" and
"select"). In that sense, natural selection only selects "against",
never "for". It only happens when something *doesn't* work, and the
fact that things that *do* work are left (and sometimes get "better") is
an artifact. Sexual selection, OTOH, is an active selection "for"

On a different subject: Is Lynn Thomas still down there?

Jim Moore (

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