Tampering With Creation

By: Daniel Nardini

Lawndale News Chicago's Bilingual Newspaper - Commentary There are some scientists who are thinking the impossible—recreating species of animals that had become extinct. Among some of the animals that may be included in this “de-extinction” drive are the Dodo, the saber-tooth tiger, the aurochs, and the mammoth. Since their DNA is still largely intact (the same cannot be said for dinosaurs, however), it is theoretically possible to recreate these species of animals. But the next question that comes to my mind is whether humanity should?

Some of these extinct animals, like the Dodo, died out because they were killed off by humans. Dodos, who used to live in Mauritius, had no natural enemies beyond man. Humans just ate the Dodo as humans ate just about everything else at the time. The aurochs is the ancestor of the modern day dairy cows and bulls. They simply died off in 1627. Maybe, we should resurrect those animals that had died out long ago as a result of human waste and negligence. But I say maybe. Two major problems arise from giving them back life again. First, the environment they were born into is all gone. Can the aurochs live in modern day Europe? Can the Dodo live in modern day Mauritius? Can they live in competition with those species of animals humans have introduced since then?

And what about those species of animals who became extinct because Mother Nature chose them for extinction? Should we really try to even consider bringing these species of critters back from a long gone era? Again, the question of environment holds true just as it does for those animals that have gone extinct due to man. Can they survive in today’s era with humans or any of the domesticated animals around now? And if they can survive, could these newly resurrected creators destroy those modern day animals now facing the threat of extinction themselves? We must keep in mind that for whatever man creates, any unthinking act could further unbalance Mother Nature. Personally, maybe we should consider doing what we can to save those species facing extinction now or that have become recently extinct because of man.

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