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Author Topic:   All in the Family - Guest star: Neanderthal
Belfry
Member (Idle past 3280 days)
Posts: 177
From: Ocala, FL
Joined: 11-05-2005


Message 8 of 96 (276802)
01-07-2006 8:36 PM
Reply to: Message 3 by randman
01-07-2006 3:42 PM


Re: you need to clarify, imo
randman writes:

Neanderthals have been described, not just as "all over the map", but in fact were described as some sort of missing link, very ape-like, from the beginning, and though we have known such descriptions were wrong since the early 50s, Neanderthals were depicted with exagerrated ape-like features and often shown a series of evolutionary links, and still are at times in educational materials.


Once again, both Homo sapiens and H. neanderthalis were/are apes. Therefore an ape-like depiction would be correct, even under your assertion that they are just a variety of H. sapiens. I'm not sure what you mean by, "...and often shown a series of evolutionary links." Perhaps you meant "as part of a series?" {Edit: In any case, I think it's more appropriate to discuss what science says about H. neanderthalis today rather than the discarded ideas of the past or the misrepresentations of the present that are not held by scientists in this field.}

randman writes:

Most depictions, imo, were largely false and misrepresentative. Neanderthals were people, did art, buried their dead, etc,...Keep in mind some tribes of people just 150 years ago and less lived in a similar fashion with similar levels of technology.

Imo, if you remove the historical misrepresentation and view the evidence outside of the evolutionary paradigms, the best way to view Neanderthals is simple as an ancient tribe of people. Due to inbreeding, certain traits will be more dominant among ethnic groups and tribes, and during periods of longer isolation probably partly due to weather, it is not surprising that some groups developed more pronounced features.

The molecular argument, I believe, is made to argue that Neanderthals just died out and did not interbreed with the tribes of men that survived and were pur forefathers. Some other evidence, I understand, suggests that is not the case since there are examples, from what I have read, of a mix of traits. I think it is far more likely some Neanderthals did intermix with the Cro-Magnon tribe. Cro-Magnons were essentially identical to modern humans except generally taller is my understanding.

But regardless if Neanderthals died out or some mixed in to produce modern ethnic groups of humanity, I think it is unreasonable to think Neanderthals could not breed with people today, and are something less than just people.


I note with approval that you are presenting most of these statements as opinions, in contrast to the bold statement from the other thread: "First off, I would argue Neanderthals are better thought of a tribe of homo sapiens and not a separate species." I would appreciate links or references with regard to the "mix of traits" you mention, if you have any available.

With regard to your sentence: I would absolutely regard H. neanderthalis as "people," but I am using this term as distinct from "humans." The evidence suggests that they were a different species of "people," but certainly possessed cultural elements of personhood. That is arguable on semantic grounds, but I'm comfortable with it.

This message has been edited by Belfry, 01-07-2006 08:43 PM


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Belfry
Member (Idle past 3280 days)
Posts: 177
From: Ocala, FL
Joined: 11-05-2005


Message 20 of 96 (277112)
01-08-2006 10:54 AM
Reply to: Message 19 by Nuggin
01-08-2006 9:49 AM


Re: Hybrid
Nuggin writes:

That's one of the reasons I don't like the "if they can't breed" specific definition. For example - do we know for sure that T-Rex couldn't breed with (insert other dinosaur here)?


Yeah, it just doesn't work as a prerequisite criterion. In the plant kingdom, we can frequently take two tree species (for example) within the same genus that are morphologically, ecologically, and geographically distinct from one another, sometimes from diffferent hemispheres of the earth, and breed them to make fertile hybrids. Researchers with the American Chestnut Foundation have been doing this with American and Chinese species, crossing and back-crossing to breed for chestnut blight resistance, and hopefully reintroduce the once-prevalent genus Castanea into eastern forests.
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Belfry
Member (Idle past 3280 days)
Posts: 177
From: Ocala, FL
Joined: 11-05-2005


Message 21 of 96 (277113)
01-08-2006 11:01 AM
Reply to: Message 11 by randman
01-07-2006 11:46 PM


Re: you need to clarify, imo
randman writes:

The problem, imo, is evo scientists have made the term "species" to at times not be very useful.


Um, by "evo scientists," I guess you must mean "biologists."

randman writes:

But as people, I think we all understand the term people, and so I am using it for clarity. Neanderthals were a race or tribe of people that either died out, or intermingled with other tribes and lost their distinctiveness.


No, I'm sure that many of us have somewhat different concepts of what "people" means, so you should define how you're using it. I would consider other modern species within the great ape family to be "people," for example - that's just my personal feeling, because the term has no scientific definition that I'm aware of. Certainly the evidence suggest that H. neanderthalis would fit my concept of "people." That's not very meaningful, biologically.

This message has been edited by Belfry, 01-08-2006 11:01 AM


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Belfry
Member (Idle past 3280 days)
Posts: 177
From: Ocala, FL
Joined: 11-05-2005


Message 27 of 96 (277210)
01-08-2006 3:56 PM
Reply to: Message 26 by randman
01-08-2006 3:20 PM


Re: not this again
randman writes:

There is not enough differences in Neanderthals to claim them as a different species, imo. Keep in mind that it took, once again, about 100 years to get evos to begin to back off insisting Neanderthals were a link between apes and humans.


Neanderthals and humans are both apes. You might want to consider rephrasing and discontinuing the use of that term.

randman writes:

Look at the representations of Neanderthals. The older are the more brutish and the more recent are the ones that depict Neanderthals as essentially identical in appearance to someone you'd see walking by you on the street, as you say. There is a reason for the progressive change in depiction. There was a myth created that all the evidence points to as a myth, and gradually the evo community has come to grips with it, and began to show Neanderthals as essentially just people.


Um, the "evo community" are the ones responsible for this change in depiction in response to the evidence. So what is your point?
This message is a reply to:
 Message 26 by randman, posted 01-08-2006 3:20 PM randman has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 29 by randman, posted 01-08-2006 5:37 PM Belfry has responded

  
Belfry
Member (Idle past 3280 days)
Posts: 177
From: Ocala, FL
Joined: 11-05-2005


Message 32 of 96 (277284)
01-08-2006 7:15 PM
Reply to: Message 29 by randman
01-08-2006 5:37 PM


Re: not this again
I think that you greatly overestimate the degree to which scientists take creationist complaints into account in their work.

In any case, our current representations could be very inaccurate - we really don't know how much hair they had, for example, unless I'm mistaken. These reconstructions are always taken with a grain of salt among scientists.


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Belfry
Member (Idle past 3280 days)
Posts: 177
From: Ocala, FL
Joined: 11-05-2005


Message 64 of 96 (278143)
01-11-2006 12:24 PM
Reply to: Message 62 by randman
01-11-2006 12:00 PM


Re: note as well
Very interesting, thanks!
This message is a reply to:
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