[Taxacom] decline and fall of taxonomy

Adolf & Oluna Ceska aceska at telus.net
Wed Jun 17 10:53:47 CDT 2009

Let's face it, isn't the taxonomy a certain kind of autism? Being a
colourblind, I know that ordinary "normal" people are laughing at us,
colourblind people, in the way they would never laugh at the blind people.
The same is true about the taxonomy as a certain kind of autism. The common
image of a botanist is somebody who is going around with a vasculum and a
butterfly net. When I read Jules Verne's "Les Enfants du capitaine Grant", I
greatly appreciated the personality of a botanist who recognized that the
Grant's children and he landed in Patagonia, and not in Australia. Never
mind that he did not notice that his horse died under him and he continued
his journey on foot totally without any concern.

Many of the victims of the taxonomic autism want to be even more funny than
they actually are and they behave in the way that the ordinary people
consider strange. At such a situation, it is difficult to convince the
"normal" people that taxonomy can contribute to other, now "modern", fields
of biology. We have to get rid of the feeling that the number of hairs on
the insect's metatarsus is the most important thing in the world and we
should try to get taxonomy where it really belongs.

Adolf Ceska, Victoria, British Columbia, Canada

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