December 26, 2012

A Perversion of Darwinism

Filed under: Christmas Time!,Science,What the hell? — Katrina @ 6:42 pm

You know what I fucking hate? Ridiculous and fallacious applications of survival of the fittest to human society. And it’s almost always made to mean not so much survival but rather lack of survival of the weak or stupid. While this does apply in certain areas, the idea goes way overboard a lot, to the point of sociopathy.

For example, when looking at history, one might look at, say, the conquest and deaths of the Native Americans at the hands of white settlers to be what can be expected naturally. Why? Because a nice dose of Social Darwinism states that the Native Americans were clearly the weaker and less fit party, that therefore they’d only lose out to the surviving white settlers because they were clearly the fit and strong ones. And that with the weak ones dying out and those strong ones surviving, this would somehow be beneficial to our species.

Another example. A few years ago, I wrote about kids being left to die in hot cars. The comment on that was someone signed in as “Darwin” and saying, “See my theory of Evolution for an explanation of the purpose of this behavior.” That post was mentioned in a forum thread on SnipeMe last year, and the comment got a bit of agreement. Well, there are a lot of problems with that! For one, it reduces the child from personhood and makes him merely a vessel for his parents’ supposedly-faulty genes. And for that reason makes out the child’s unfortunate death to be a good thing for our species! Not to mention that the death had nothing to do with anything the child did, that this death was because his parents killed him through THEIR neglect and stupidity.

It also broadly applies biological determinism where its appropriateness is at best poorly understood by even the people who actually would know what the fuck they are talking about.

And where the fuck does anyone come off saying the deaths of innocent children at the hands of stupid parents, or tribes at the hands of resource-hungry invaders, or any number of people who died in avoidable accidents, are beneficial to our species? That one would make a statement so outrageously callous and defend it by pretending it’s science?!

You see, there is something very advantageous to our species, and that is our ability to discover and solve problems and, you know, help each other! We are supposed to be well beyond leaving the little sick and weak ones to die, so to speak. We are supposed to know better than to assume only those whose genes are “correct” have a right to live. Because maybe, just maybe, we’ve evolved into being better than that!

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