Re: virus: Abortion, etc.

Lather. Rinse. Repeat. (
Wed, 13 Mar 1996 19:54:59 -0700 (MST)

On Wed, 13 Mar 1996, Ronald Ferruci wrote:

> I didn't say that animals are more intelligent than us, but that we=20
> can't prove that they don't think. Maybe they can't build a=20
> hydroelectric dam or write a symphony because they are incorrect=20
> anatomically for it. Only a few other species besides us have an=20
> opposable thumb that would allow that. =20

While it is true that animals communicate with each other, to the best of=
my knowledge we have not found evidence that their methods of=20
communication are as or more complex than ours. Despite the fact that=20
some birds, for instance, can mimic human speech patterns, they generally=
don't start engaging in dialogue with us... yet a human being learning to=
imitate speech patterns does. =20

As an aside, I wonder if and how the opposable thumb and human=20
intelligence are related. Any thoughts, anyone?

> And maybe they don't have the
> intelligence to do what you say (although i would hardly call a=20
> hydroelectric dam a work of intelligence)=20

Um... have you ever taken a tour of one? Seen the plans for one? Talked=
to an engineer who has worked on or studied one?=20

> but that doesn't mean that=20
> they can't think.=20

This is true. I'm just asserting that we have pretty convincing evidence=
that we're more intelligent than they are.

> We have found that animals can learn, and they can=20
> use technology (low technology, but it's still technology). And=20
> gorillas have been able to learn sign language.

Yes, but as you suggest, the technology isn't very sophisticated. And=20
while gorillas have been trained in sign language, the level of=20
communication is still pretty basic -- nothing remotely close to what a=20
human using sign language is capable of.

> But just because we may be more intelligent than them (some of us=20
> may be, some i quite suspect) doesn't give us the right to exploit=20
> them. =20

Says who? You? God? Why should let either one you tell me what I do or=
do not have the right to do?

> If we're going to decide or exploitable rights on who we are=20
> more intelligent then, whats to stop us from exploiting little=20
> children, old people, the brain dead, people in comas, retarded=20
> people, and so on. If we base our rights to exploit on intelligence,=20
> what about those with extremly low iqs or those that i have=20
> mentioned, many of these people are of lower intelligence than many=20
> animals.

Perhaps we would draw the line at self-interest. Is it in our best=20
interest as a society to exploit children/etc? Probably not. Is it in=20
our best interest to exploit animals? In some cases, maybe so. =20

Perhaps we should also define what we mean by "exploit". =20

And i have come accross people on my own campus (normal=20
> people) who i suspect may be dumber than my dog.
> Ron Ferrucci.=20