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Juxtaposing Viewpoints On Genetic Species Revival

1655 words - 7 pages

Though it may seem that the issue of species revival through a means of genetic science is a modern idea, similar arguments throughout the past also hold relevance to the modern issue of genetic species revival. To better understand the issue as it becomes more prevalent, it is important to examen different perspectives that span many centuries time, generating new insight on the issue. Examining different perspectives on the perceived human influences on species extinction vs. natural law and lack of adaptability, and give a determination on the ethical implications to society and ecology from the above arguments and philosophies from each viewpoint. Through these key statements, the arguments on genetic species revival can be effectively argued.
The premise of the entire argument for and against genetic species revival rests with either the belief in human influences on species, or natural law. Human influences as a cause for species extinction is a recent idea which author Carl Zimmer gives a his main reason for favoring genetic species revival. “If we’re talking about species we drove extinct, then I think we have an obligation to try to do this” (Zimmer 451). In the authors opinion, human influences trump natural law, which he would consider to be an outdated and non-effective way of looking at how species become extinct. Therefore, because natural law is only a way of looking at how species become extinct, it is not a solution to species extinction. Thus, genetic species revival is the only way which human influences can be combated and the problem of species extinction can be solved.
True, human influences may be a new idea ascribed as reason to species extinction. Yet Charles Darwin, an 19th century natural biologist and the man credited with observing natural selection, would argue otherwise:
Natural Selection, as we shall hereafter see, is a power incessantly ready for action, and is as immeasurably superior to man’s feeble efforts, as the works of Nature are to those of Art. (Darwin and Quammen 115)
As Darwin argues, the basis for the existence of a species rests on the idea that weaker and less adaptable species become extinct, while species that are able to adapt will continue to thrive until they too are no longer capable of adapting to their changing ecosystems (Darwin and Quammen 116). This argument, which is a contradiction to the arguments of Carl Zimmer, rests on the firm belief that stronger species thrive while weaker species die off which is the entire premise for which the theory of natural selection is based; which furthermore, indicates that natural law prevails over the idea of human influence. Through the above arguments, both a case for human influence and natural law are given. It’s a general assumption that human impact is the main reason species become extinct. Though, as stated by Richard Leaky and Roger Lewin in their book The Sixth Extinction: Biodiversity and Its Survival “Talk of...

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