Well I've brought this up elsewhere on these forums and nobody seems to find it interesting, but I continue to feel it is.
If we're looking at only 100 years, then phyletic gradualism
(slow constant evolutionary change) would mean not much change at all in such a
Slow, constant gradual change was Darwin's theory, and yet the fossil records don't support it- they show us phases of stasis
-Periods of relative little to no change, with phases of
quick and drastic change.
Big changes in the environment is what is usually the catalyst.
-Though I should make it clear I am not talking about evolution of a society, but of the biological organism.
It seems that it has become common for people to assume that we are now no longer subject to natural selection and evolutionary biological change
influenced by the environment, because our technology has separated us from that influence.
Our ozone is depleteing, at an amazing rate. Everyone seems to be more interested in arguing about whether it is man made or a natural cyclical
process, but I am going to leave that aside for the moment as not relevant to my subject.
The fact is, as that ozone layer fades, more radiation comes in, not from any distant star, but from our own- our own sun. This causes mutations in
DNA. The more radiation, the more mutations.
So change is literally speeding up for our bodies right now. It may be chaotic. But add to that some other changes in environment due to the increased
radiation on the planet (does it actually effect seismic and volcanic activity? With the ice on the caps melting, oceans rising, what other types of
environment changes are in store for us?).
Some mutations will turn out to be better adapted than others, nature will sort them out.
We have everything needed going on right now for another evolutionary leap in our biology. Catalyst- UV radiation.
Even cladogenesis, the process by which a species splits into two distinct species is a possibility on the menu.
So while some are laughing at the New Age channelers going on about DNA changes bringing about a new type of humanoid, because they're talking about
12 strand DNA, or strange energies from other universes and such, they are pointing in te direction of something that is really possibly happening
right now, and is totally within the limits of our current scientific knowledge.
Based upon what happens to our environment between now and then, we could possibly have a new species of human living alongside the old one, the way
Cro-magnon and Neanderthal did for a while.
edit on 27-3-2013 by Bluesma because: (no reason given)