[Taxacom] Molecules wins over morphology again
J. Kirk Fitzhugh
kfitzhugh at nhm.org
Thu Sep 1 12:36:13 CDT 2011
Welcome to the slanted review process. I've encountered this attitude
with nearly every manuscript I've submitted that addresses philosophy of
systematics (and calls into question many of the methods used). Quality
of science seems to have a much lower priority in the review process,
where it's more important to be a good little trooper who totes the
party line of methodological mediocrity.
On 9/1/2011 7:31 AM, John Grehan wrote:
> Here is a recent example of how prejudice against morphological
> systematics and the resulting orangutan theory of human origin can
> adversely affect publication opportunities.
> "Thank you for submitting this manuscript. It has been assessed by one
> of our senior editors, who sees no basis for your argument that orangs
> and humans are sister taxa (based on your analysis of phenotypic data),
> or for your assertion that (authors) are wrong to believe that molecular
> data are sufficient to prove that chimps and humans are monophyletic.
> Unfortunately we cannot consider your submission further."
> Note how the editor is able to just dismiss the published evidence as
> non existent (no basis). What is truly bizarre is that this rejection of
> morphological evidence having any independent scientific validity comes
> from the editor of a journal that has anatomy as its core subject!!!!
> Anyway, it has just been brought to my attention that Zootaxa not only
> allowed molecular evidence to be contested, but also promoted a debate
> with respect to fish systematics. So perhaps we will have more luck with
> this journal by drawing attention to the same kind of problem in higher
> primate systematics.
> John Grehan
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