Fw: Saving the ethnosphere

From: Philip Jonkers (philipjonkers@prodigy.net)
Date: Thu May 09 2002 - 21:57:13 BST

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    From: "Philip Jonkers" <philipjonkers@prodigy.net>
    To: <memetics@mmu.ac.uk>
    Subject: Fw: Saving the ethnosphere
    Date: Thu, 9 May 2002 13:57:13 -0700
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    ----- Original Message -----
    From: "Philip Jonkers" <philipjonkers@prodigy.net>
    To: <memetics@mmu.ac.uk>
    Sent: Friday, May 03, 2002 10:49 AM
    Subject: Re: Saving the ethnosphere

    > Phil:
    > > > Only if the natives are found to be ill-adapted to their new cultural
    > > > environments.
    > > > For instance, IIRC many `idians' became addicted to alcohol and
    > > > killed
    > > > eachother
    > > > off more with the new weapons (guns) they were handed from the white
    > > > settlers.
    > > > In that sense, yes it is quite terrible but other than that it's
    > > > mostly
    > > > sentiment
    > > > (no offense). If the natives on the other hand gained from the new
    > > > culture,
    > > > I don't
    > > > see any real reason why it is terrible.
    > Ozren:
    > > Again, I don't think my explanation was clear enough. I have no
    > > problem with cultures changing or disappearing through time. I have a
    > > huge problem when there is a *massive* destruction of cultures. Let me
    > > use an analogy: if an occasional person in a society dies, some people
    > > are affected by it, but the society in general continues on without
    > > much effect being visible. If suddenly half of the persons living in
    > > that society die out, because of the work of a few other individuals in
    > > that society, then we have a problem, right? And the society is quite
    > > different afterwards, and probably less robust and capable.
    > > This is the problem I see happening right now.
    > From an ethical point of view it's indeed hard to accept that a lot of
    > people
    > perish through the work of a few. From an evolutionary perspective (and
    > that's
    > what this mailing-list is all about) however this need not be per se.
    > the
    > evolutionary condition that society improves (=better adaptation to
    > environmental
    > circumstances) after half of its population is destroyed it may be
    > fortuitous. Perhaps half of the
    > population was infected by some insane and dangerous thought-system (e.g.
    > cult)
    > that was potentially dangerous to society. I know this does not apply to
    > examples
    > you hinted at and it may sound crazy, bordering to eugenic sentiments and
    > all that
    > but bear with me that human ethics and evolution often clash
    > (we keep our sick alive and allow the weak to prosper). Nature, being red
    > tooth
    > and claw, doesn't respect human rights only humans (ideally) do. I find it
    > exceedingly
    > difficult to reflect on humanity when wearing evolutionary
    > glasses without running into conflict with ethics. I do not mean
    > to offend you or anybody (I love humans as much as the next guy).
    > Phil.

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