Rick Valley bamboogrove at cmug.com
Tue Mar 11 11:12:02 EST 2003

> From: Claude Genest <genest at together.net>
> ( Jarred ?). DIAMOND- Guns, Germs and Steel
> In any event, the hypothesis is that what gave Whitey a genetic advantage over
> others with regards to immunity to disease, is that the Europeeans had
> co-evolved in very close proximity to their domestic animals like pigs and
> cows, animals not indigenouus in the Americas. As a result, they had evolved
> immunities to the diseases caught from those animals, while the "Americans"
> had not.
Which is one of the human/disease interactions; there's also the human/wild
animal interaction (malaria, yellow fever, etc.) which is why we Euros
"partnered" in much of our expansion with Africans and Asians; we weren't
resistant enough to the tropical diseases. And in both cases it was the
pattern of creatures from a larger land mass tending to move into a smaller
land mass more successfully than vice-versa. And there is the human/animal
partnership, which was more developed for the invaders (more domesticates,
esp. large ones) and in large part due to the megafaunal massacre which took
place during the initial human expansion into non Afro-Eurasian regions of
the globe.
And now it's fun to toss in Tim Flannery's observation that species that
move into the Americas tend to rapid evolutionary diversification.
One example would be the mixed origin peoples throughout the Americas-
Garifuna, Seminole, Caboclo, etc. etc.; very interesting cultures all.


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