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  Why we breed what we breed (was: amorpho titanium pollen !!!)
From: "Wilbert Hetterscheid" hetter at worldonline.nl> on 2001.06.21 at 16:04:05(6795)
To Ron, from Amorph- and cultivated plant taxonomy -land

I think you're mixing two "realities". I do see that you recognise them,
being "nature" and its own laws of evolution of biodiversity and "man" (or
should that read "women".....?), with its own influence on biodiversity,
leading to a parallell diversity in domesticated entities (e.g. plant
cultivars, domesticated cats and dogs, cows, and what have you). I think we
should not condemn what we're doing ourselves to improve our society (think
of agricultural crops being vastly artificially improved to fill our needs)
because we obscure the beauty of wild things. We have a pre-set goal in
manipulating plants and animals and we do it and succeed, resulting in a
kind of "culto-diversity" with which we are mostly very pleased. Nature has
no intentional goal and thus "produces" another kind of diversity, which we
may like, or maybe even dislike. I don't think you should take "nature"
itself as the norm and adapt our domestication and breeding to THAT norm. WE
are the norm, whether some of us like or dislike that anthropocentrism. It's
reality, and that's what it is.

Should we revert to collecting our food ONLY from what nature has to offer
in its present form? I guess we'd have a REAL social problem coming up then.

Suggested reading (and self-promotion....): Hetterscheid, W.L.A. & W.A.
Brandenburg. 1995. Culton vs. Taxon: conceptual issues in cultivated plant
systematics. Taxon 44: 161-175.

Have phun.

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