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15 January 2011

Let the polar bears die, liberals: It's only your beloved evolution at work

Wednesday, December 22nd 2010, 4:00 AM

If polar bears are on track for extinction, we should not intefere.
If polar bears are on track for extinction, we should not intefere.

If you own a television, you've probably seen them: commercials pleading in somber tones to save the polar bear from extinction. A memorable public service announcement for the World Wildlife Fund features one-time "ER" actor (and now, it would seem, full-time polar bear advocate) Noah Wyle, assuring us that, "Climate change is threatening one of the most magnificent wild animals on the planet." However you feel about these creatures, the heart-tugging WWF ads are nonetheless pretty compelling.

Liberal animal rights and global warming activists have bonded together to save this formidable predator from what they tell us is certain death. They insist that, thanks to us, species are becoming extinct faster than ever (though I don't think we were measuring back in 500 BC).

Good rule of thumb: If you're quick to blame America for most bad things that happen in the world, you also may be quick to blame human kind for everything sad that happens on the planet. And frankly, that's just species-ist.

But unsurprisingly, President Obama isn't impervious to the maudlin message. He is currently considering reclassifying the poor polar bear's status from "threatened" to "endangered" under the federal Endangered Species Act. This year, he set aside 187,000 square miles in Alaska as a "critical habitat" for polar bears, which has prompted the state of Alaska to consider suing the administration for potentially costing it millions in lost economic activity and tax revenue.

But here's a question that's rarely asked: Why should we necessarily bother saving a species - any species - from extinction? And what's so gosh-darn special about the polar bear? Yes, animals are dying. But death - of a single animal or a whole species - is a part of life.

At least, that's what Darwinists tell us. In fact, if you think hard about it, animal conservation should actually be anathema to the Darwin-loving liberal agenda, which holds up evolution - and not altruistic compassion - as the final word on the survival of a species.

Sure, it's possible that we're crowding out the polar bear - but aren't we animals, too? And don't animals sometimes crowd each other out? Isn't it entirely possible that the polar bear is simply going extinct, like countless species before it?

The crass and sometimes violent coming and going of species proves evolution's central logic. So why, then, do polar bear activists insist that another species - that would be us - tamper with Darwin's grand design and swoop in to save an animal that simply wasn't fit enough to make it in the cutthroat world of biological survival?

Take the Monteverde golden toad of Costa Rica, for example, which many thought went extinct in the 1980s because of global warming - the same villain that is now apparently killing the polar bear. Well, it turns out that the Monteverde toad died from disease, according to a recent study.


The fact is, we don't know conclusively what is killing the polar bears. If it's global warming, then doesn't bovine flatulence deserve some of the blame? Don't laugh - it's a potentially harmful discharge. No, seriously.

And what about global warming and melting polar ice caps? A study by the National Snow and Ice Data Center indicates that in the last three years alone, summer sea ice has increased by a staggering 409,000 square miles.

Oops again.

One recent study in Nature suggested that polar bear hybridization with grizzlies had something to do with their decline. So maybe it's the grizzly's fault - he's probably a Republican.

Maybe we should admit that our science is not as perfect as we would like to believe and that nature is ultimately inexplicable and beyond our control. There is no sense in meddling with the extinction of polar bears, not when so many more pressing human problems await. Until there's ironclad proof of how and why extinction works, and how much evil we've done to hasten it along, I'm going to save my emotional anguish for dying and suffering members of my own species. Okay, and puppies. They're just too cute.

Read more: http://www.nydailynews.com/opinions/2010/12/22/2010-12-22_let_the_polar_bears_die_liberals_its_only_your_beloved_evolution_at_work.html#ixzz1945AC6tB


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