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Are we, as mankind, devolving?

Buddha 3

Hamfist McPunchalot
Okay people, this part of the forum is a place to ponder things like the meaning of life, not to ask boring, technical questions about what material your grips are made of...

So I got one for you to think about... Is mankind devolving, rather than evolving?
Let's look at the facts. In order for a species to evolve into something "better", usually only the brightest and strongest get to procreate. If for some reason, a "lesser" specimen were to have offspring, they'd be dead pretty damn quick. This is natural selection.
Like strength, intelligence is also hereditary. That isn't to say that all smart people have smart kids, but on avarage, if your parents have a high IQ, chances are that you do too.
In a natural situation, the smarter people would have more children. Not per se because they would have less trouble finding a mate, but because their offspring would have a greater chance of survival.
Nowadays though, the people with high IQ's, on avarage, have fewer kids than the less "edumacated" part os our species. And thanks to modern science, the "stupid" kids don't have a very high mortality rate either.

Ergo, the gene pool is being overtaken by "lesser" specimens and so we are devolving...
 

Rebel Tackleberry

Well-Known Member
Mar 23, 2010
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It's an interesting question. When you look at society you do have to ask yourself where it's heading.

When you consider that we are simply over breeding, full stop, you then have to look at the proportion of productive to non-productive members of society. Everyone can relate personally to a situation where a large family seems to continue breeding when there are no workers in that household, and maybe even multiple generations that have never worked.

Evolution works by weeding out those without an advantageous survival trait. Our 'civilisation' now negates that to a certain extent.

On the whole, the intelligent part of the population will see general intelligence increase. But it does seem that education standard in general is falling, when you see the general standard of grammar and spelling all around you. I've often thought whether that is a symptom of the actual lowering of ability, or simply the fact that we all see it more due to the fact that the Internet gives everyone the ability to broadcast their own opinions and thoughts. I.e, is a large part of the population really less intelligent or is it just that we didn't see them broadcasting that fact in the past.
 

Dusty

Don't run, you'll only die tired....
May 19, 2004
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Northern Ireland
The gene pool here has been devoid of lifeguards for a while now..........

I think in times like this we need a decent natural disaster to weed out the weak and sickly and stoopid. Or we need a zombie infestation to see who's got the minerals ;)

Nazi's have got something to do with it too and I think that's covered all compulsory internet thread must have key words.
 

Cook$

Just the tip....
Jul 7, 2001
5,749
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Championsville
The gene pool here has been devoid of lifeguards for a while now..........

I think in times like this we need a decent natural disaster to weed out the weak and sickly and stoopid. Or we need a zombie infestation to see who's got the minerals ;)

Nazi's have got something to do with it too and I think that's covered all compulsory internet thread must have key words.
That's pretty much what I've always sai, we need a good hard war to sort us all out.

I do have a coherent argument for this, which I will type up once I've finished pretending to work (ie, looking at physics homework, whilst not doing anything).

And thanks to Buddha, for reviving the brainbox for what it should be.
 
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Bambulus

Wreckballer - PMGWC#2
Nov 13, 2008
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that special place.
www.leekspin.com
Evolution isn't directional - it isn't based on the traditional sense on what qualities make a person, or even humankind, 'better'; only what makes procreation more successful. It's impossible to devolve in evolutionary theory.

It's also worth noting that the qualities that we hold to be preferable in a person aren't necessarily the best for procreation, I wrote an entire dissertation on, effectively, what makes stupidity (or what most sensible people would determine to be stupid behavior) as evolutionarily beneficial, both to the individual and in the wider sense.

People always work on the assumption that evolution is the progress of a species to an observable goal, which it isn't. It's essentially random, based on whatever environmental pressures are working on a community at any one time.

Many people have also argued that the fact we live in such a large and global society has completely neutered the effects of evolution. I'd argue that they are incredibly wrong, but I don't have the time to write that up now; they just are. Evolution is happening as much now as it ever has done, it's just that the environmental pressures have shifted.

I know this is very short, but I'm tired. I can barely function right now, let alone write my thesis :D
 
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Buddha 3

Hamfist McPunchalot
Evolution isn't directional - it isn't based on the traditional sense on what qualities make a person, or even humankind, 'better'; only what makes procreation more successful. It's impossible to devolve in evolutionary theory.

It's also worth noting that the qualities that we hold to be preferable in a person aren't necessarily the best for procreation, I wrote an entire dissertation on, effectively, what makes stupidity (or what most sensible people would determine to be stupid behavior) as evolutionarily beneficial, both to the individual and in the wider sense.

People always work on the assumption that evolution is the progress of a species to an observable goal, which it isn't. It's essentially random, based on whatever environmental pressures are working on a community at any one time.

Many people have also argued that the fact we live in such a large and global society has completely neutered the effects of evolution. I'd argue that they are incredibly wrong, but I don't have the time to write that up now; they just are. Evolution is happening as much now as it ever has done, it's just that the environmental pressures have shifted.

I know this is very short, but I'm tired. I can barely function right now, let alone write my thesis :D
Fine, but are we getting dumber yes or no?