Reflecting back on the whole natural order of things I can’t help but notice how humanity no longer fits in it. There are so many examples of this, but let’s focus on one for a second. I was thinking the other day about the role of males raising other men’s children. When you look at Nature, the natural world, what you don’t see is very many examples of males of a species stepping in to raise the young of another male. You don’t see male penguins agreeing to parent the young of a fellow penguin who got eaten by a shark. You don’t see male swans valiantly stepping up to play proud daddy of the little swans whose father got eaten by the neighborhood raccoon. It just isn’ a typical part of the animal kingdom.
Hell, in the lion kingdom, when a new male takes over the head of a pride, his first course of action is to kill all existing cubs. This has the unusual side effect of instantly causing all the females of the pride to go into heat, allowing him to impregnate them all with his own seed. Talk about the ultimate refusal to play surrogate father!
With the basic purpose of procreation being to ensure that one’s genetic material survives into the future, there is no biological or evolutionary advantage for caring for someone else’s young. This scientific certainty is mirrored in a host of very clear examples where there are biological imperatives against such a thing. So where does that leave people? Do we also share that self-serving biological imperative to not want to care for another male’s young? Are we also biologically driven to avoid such situations, and to avoid such responsibility? Given the overwhelming number of species that operate in this very way, I’d hazzard that the answer is yes. Fortunately, when we choose to do so, human beings possess the incredible ability to regularly behave outside of our biological programming. Despite that, it takes a rare breed of man to be willing to raise another man’s child. Does that make the rest of us bad guys, or merely human?
I’m just saying…