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Re: Rock'n'roll !

If you ask a strict cladist, he (or she) will probably answer that there are still dinosaurs living----namely birds.
Many of the rest of us would say that birds are "dinosaur descendants", but that we choose not to call them dinosaurs.
I sometimes get criticized for using the following analogy, but here goes. I have French ancestors, but I do not consider myself a Frenchman (I am American). You could classify my French immigrant ancestor as either French or American (being transitional), it's really arbitrary, but we all make arbitrary cuts for classificatory purposes. Archaeopteryx was still very much a dinosaur in many ways, but most of us put it in a separate bird class with living birds.
Now the strict cladists on the list can tell you that birds ARE dinosaurs, as if recognizing them as "dinosaur descendants" isn't going far enough. So it goes.
Cheers, Ken Kinman
From: tony@razsemi.com (TONY)
Reply-To: tony@razsemi.com
To: dinosaur@usc.edu
Subject: Rock'n'roll !
Date: Wed, 09 Aug 2000 09:46:44 -0400

Hi folks,

I have to admit that discussing with you guys is a pretty moving
experience. My first dumb message (regarding the fossilization process)
generated all kinds of reactions.
The first one came from our administrator who was wondering if I was a
creationist... (don't you worry).
I also would like to thank Ray Stanford for his patient, detailed and
brilliant "two cents worth" answer. This is the kind of thing I was
looking for when I registered the dino list. Thank you !
The Larry Dunn - Ray Stanford exchange that followed was totally beyond
my control. Cool down my friends! You might be disturbed by the way I
write, since I am no paleontologist and no american (I'm French).
Thank god I tipe these e-mails, you should see my handwriting!

I will keep on sending the stupidest questions ever, just because they
need an answer. I will always try to confront other sources with your
knowledge (like I did with this website yesterday, who is actually
handeled by paleontologists).
Always remember that chinese saying:
"The one who asks a question looks like an idiot for five minutes. The
one who does not remains an idiot forever."

So now fasten your seatbelts and get ready for my next "naive but
serious" question:

To be continued.
sincerely yours
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