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chrisvalleybay 4 months ago | hide | past | web | favorite

I started skimming part way through. The article didn't seem to offer much substance, just a few weak opinions restated a few times in different words.

Low points: "everyone is technically a hybrid" and that chimeras are created using "genetic manipulation".

I don't know how this article got on HN in the first place. It's clickbait garbage disguised as interesting science.

OK, maybe we can make a hybrid... so? Why would we? At least part of the author's hopes seem to be to run evolution in the face of all the anti-science nuts who pretend to doubt it. But genetic manipulation is not evolution so it doesn't prove anything but it does give people a good reason to think that science has no moral compass.

The subtitle claims it's scientifically possible and morally defensible but the author doesn't seem to know what "morally defensible" means.

Why is it morally reprehensible to make human hybrids? Is it no more reprehensible than all modification (including selective breeding) we do all the time?

About the only bad thing I can see is the rationale "because we can". That is not a good enough reason.

> the ultimate benefit of teaching human beings their true nature

Lulz. Any hybrid would be seized upon by the normal racist peanut gallery and used to further existing racial discrimination, rather than being some kind of harmonizing panacea.

I am sure scientists creating a half-chimp half-human monster will make the general population trust them more and stop doubting their sanity and just put all other decision in their hands /s.

Please elaborate on the thought processes you're describing.

I'm sure if you look through the various pits of the internet you'll come across the "pronounced jawline = monkey" ideology that's so popular with the far right, along with a lot of pseudoscience to back it up.

My guess is this sort of experimentation is pretty inevitable in various geographic regions where laws are loose, so rather than encouraging folks to do this we should probably focus more on trying to intellectually prepare them.

What does a talking chimpanzee mean for the world? Hopefully not a source of donor organs and rather a symbol that life in all its forms must be cherished and respected.

Assuming brain changes only, more like:

looks like a chimpanzee, can't really talk due to throat limitations, can't walk very well, but likes to read and write

What would be interesting is if a humanzee turns out perhaps to be just as intelligent and perhaps fitter than humans due to hybrid vigor? Nobody really knows how intelligent a humanzee might bee.

I see his chimp hybrid and raise him from hominid to hominin. The Homo sapiens neanderthalensis genome is complete enough by now that we could arguably do the same thing with a Neanderthal man.

I think that could well be more informative to mankind's understanding of itself, and likely to cause less suffering for the created individuals.

Not that I particularly agree that either is a good idea.

Attempting to clone a Neanderthal hybrid (because there is no Neanderthal mother anymore so epigenetic is wrong) would probably be a better idea. Should tell us more about their capabilities.

They should also be relatively possible to integrate into society. As opposed to uplifted chimpanzee.

Isn't that how Planet of the Apes start?

Anyway, can't we make better models? I understand why having an entire organism is important, but we seem to be working rather well so far.

I think that was a pill that was supposed to make people smarter, but ended up used on apes, and to boot caused a human epidemic?

In the original movies the intelligent apes accidentally traveled back through time.

In the reboot, it's a viral treatment for Alzheimer's that is being tested on the apes and does cause a human pandemic.

The Soviets have tried this before - https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ilya_Ivanovich_Ivanov .

This is mentioned in the article:

> During the 1920s, a Russian biologist with the marvelously Slavic name Ilya Ivanovich Ivanov appears to have made the first serious, scientifically informed efforts to create a genetic hybrid between chimpanzees and human beings. Ivanov had the perfect qualifications: Not only did he possess a special interest in creating interspecific hybrids, he was an early specialist in artificial insemination, who had achieved international renown as a successful pioneer when it came to horse breeding. Prior to his work, even the most prized stallions and mares were limited to reproducing by “natural cover”—i.e., the old-fashioned way, one mounting at a time. But Ivanov found that by appropriate and careful dilution of stallion semen, combined with adroit use of the equine equivalent of a turkey baster, he could generate as many as 500 foals from a single genetically well-endowed stallion. His achievement caused a worldwide sensation, but nothing compared to what he next attempted.

> And failed.

Well, cloning is hard. As in really actually hard to get a result. Even harder to modify the organism in the process. Hybridizing is even harder with most distantly related species.

Much was not understood in 1920s which is why they would fail. A reminder: it was almost a century ago.

Just one year in the goulag should refresh this man's mind back to sanity.


(Summary, paraphrased: creating a new form of life, chimp hybrids, will prove the creationists wrong once and for all)


Bananas didn't prove them wrong, so why chimps?

The road to hell is paved with good intentions, apparently... And David P. Barash wants to become Satan.

No, it's NOT time to breed humanzees or Chimphumans and vindicate Alex Jones. It IS time to give legal protections to species that live in their own society and pass on culture and language through teaching and observation - sentient species like corvids, dolphins, apes and whales.

Stop trying to hide madness by cloaking it with the false pretense of intellectualism. David P. Barash should retire STAT.

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