Humans as Masters of the World

Humans as Masters of the World

DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-4586-8.ch001


Several versions of human superiority are characterized and analyzed. None give humans the right to do whatever they want to the rest of the environment. Although humans have physical superiority, that does not give humans “dominion” over the rest of the world.
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Versions Of Superiority

The purpose of this chapter is to examine four related versions of the assumption of human superiority. These are:

  • 1. Human superiority

  • 2. Human exceptionalism

  • 3. Cheerleader superiority

  • 4. Physical superiority

    • 1.

      Human Superiority

We humans are in charge of what happens to the environment, and our agency is the only agency humans need to consider.

This version was suggested by a 2010 news story from the Philadelphia area. In Pennsylvania, as in many parts of the northeastern U.S., deer populations have exploded. One cause is that humans have removed deer predators such as wolves from the environment. Large deer populations eat any and all available vegetation. With an unchecked deer population, vegetable and flower gardens vanish and even trees and shrubs are vulnerable. A Pennsylvania agency decided to employ some riflemen to kill excess deer. An environmental group objected and proposed instead that coyotes be imported and used to kill the deer.

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