What does the Cheetah and the human have in common?
Quickie from Wiki: The cheetah is a vulnerable species. Out of all the big cats, it is the least able to adapt to new environments. It has always proved difficult to breed in captivity, although recently a few zoos have managed to succeed at this. Once widely hunted for its fur, the cheetah now suffers more from the loss of both habitat and prey.
The cheetah has adapted to its environment by making itself faster and faster. Unfortunately these adaptations have placed it in jeopardy of extinction because in the process of becoming faster it has lost its ability to protect its kill from other animals. The cheetah has become too specialized and thus faces extinction.
I would say that we humans have a similar problem. We have developed specialization to the extent that we place all of our focus upon technology with little knowledge or appreciation of the human sciences that will make it possible for us to manage this high tech world that we have created.
Both the cheetah and the human species face the same paradox. They both have so finely tuned their adaption to the world that their specialization will mean their extinction.
I suspect that within the next 200 years we humans will most likely bring an end to our species and possibly the end to all life on this planet.
I think that the only way to prevent this is for our species to become much more intellectually sophisticated than it is now; I see little evidence that this will occur. The problems we face today are enormous and while we have the brain power to prevent this we may well not have the necessary character traits to do so. I suspect our species is a dead end species.
Do you think that the human species might extinguish it self within a few centuries?