Homo Invasivus

Sept 18, 20155 min read

invasive aesthete

An aesthete has been defined as a person who has or professes to have sensitivity towards beauties of art or nature. It is in this sense that the term Homo aestheticus came into use. However, Pennsylvanian paleontologist Prof. Pat Shipman has explained an invasive species as one that expands into a new habitat or ecosystem, and disrupts the entire functionality of that system. She published a book, 'The Invaders: How Humans and Their Dogs Drove Neanderthals to Extinction'. (2015), where she argues that early modern humans were the most invasive species and the most dangerous environmental enemy of all.

It is not just the 'early modern humans', but the 'modern modern humans' who still happen to be the most dangerous enemy of all life and Mother Earth herself. Thus we may have to call him 'Homo sapiens invasivus' instead.

Shipman's view that invading humans destroyed the Neanderthals further strengthens the argument that invaders have always been less civilized than the natives, anywhere on earth, at anytime till date. She says that Neanderthals had been in Europe for a couple of thousand years before the human invasion, and also used tools and fire, but the humans had domesticated a wolf-dog.

Shipman quotes in an interview with National Geographic, "....we're so invasive. We have continued to invade new continents and new habitats, accompanied by our dogs, altering, tipping, and changing the ecosystems in virtually any place in the world you can think of, with the possible exception of the submarine habitats and Antartica...We are everywhere. And everywhere we go, we are an invasive predator".

What the early modern humans did in Europe to the Neanderthals was repeated by the Europeans, probably the descendants of the early humans, when they invaded the Americas, destroying the more civilized, more advanced cultures, using their modern weapons and their cunning. They who entered America illegally are now preventing other people, including descendants of original inhabitants from entering or residing in their homeland. Almost all invasive species destroy others while they never become a threat to their own species. With man, he becomes a threat to his own species, his own brothers.

Some countries have very tough regulations for 'Environmental Biosecurity' to control any unwanted plants or animals coming into their country. The different types of invasive species to include diseases, fungi and parasites, feral animals, insects and other invertebrates, marine pests and weeds. Though these countries do not include human beings as an invasive species, their departments of immigration, which are also called Border Security, try their best to prevent human beings entering their countries illegally. Yet all such attempts have always failed, because man finds ways of invading, or introducing other invasive life to every place on earth including the deserts and the frozen north and south poles.

We are not only an invasive predator, but we also introduce other invasive plants and animals to the ecosystem, wherever we live or wherever we go. In our country we have seen that with Water Hyacinth, which was brought to our country as an ornamental garden plant by the British in 1904. Today there are over 60 invasive plants and animals identified in our country, which are destroying indigenous plants and animals, destroying our ecosystem.

Today there is also the threat of invasion of the natural environment by the new Frankensteins created by man himself, proudly named 'Genetically Modified' plants and animals. Interference with Mother Nature has always worked negatively, because man will never be able to conquer nature. Every time man has tried to interfere with nature it has been out of greed and a false assumption that the act is for the benefit of mankind. GM food is developed "to solve the hunger around the world". We do not need GM food if we can distribute the present food production uniformly around the world, instead of allowing one-third of food produced to go waste (1.3 billion tons per year), as reported by the FAO.

If man had not turned to large scale agriculture there would never have been any food waste. They would only grow, pluck and consume what they needed. Commercial agriculture became big business for big profits and those who controlled it manipulated the farmers and consumers from the time of ploughing the fields till the processed food reached the plate of the consumer. They always found new ways and means to increase their profits, first through unwanted agrochemicals, and then by patenting and monopolizing even the seeds to be planted.

The farmer as the invasive species uses agrochemicals to destroy all the natural plans and animals found in his farm, calling them weeds and pests. As the agri-poisons are made stronger and stronger, the food crops too are destroyed, which enables the businessmen to produce GM plants which they claim will be resistant to the poisons. They make the profits and the farmers are happy that he is able to destroy the weeds and pests. But the GM plants invade the surrounding wilderness, interbreed with the natural plants (which the farmer calls weeds), and the weeds too become resistant to the poisons. Invasive GM species also crossbreed, like invasive humans. The businessmen have to make stronger poisons, and also develop new GM plants. France, Germany and other European countries have already banned the genetically modified corn 'Mon810 Bt'.

If man really becomes an aesthete, if he really learns to appreciate the natural beauty around him, to write or read beautiful poetry about nature, to paint or play music, if man really embraces the Arts, he will stop destroying nature, and stop becoming an invasive animal. Then our children too will be able to hear the singing of the birds and see the beauty of the butterflies and flowers, and taste the natural sweetness of a fresh fruit.

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