One day it is possible that humans will reach puberty and transform into huge rubbery, sedentary sea-squirts. Here’s why:
Most people now accept evolution. It is pretty indisputable unless you are a creationist nut. We humans are apes (a third species of chimpanzee actually). We are mammals who evolved out of reptiles. The reptiles evolved out of amphibia who evolved out of fish. All straightforward.
The interesting point I wish to make concerns the evolution of fish.
The fish evolved out of chordates – little fish-like creatures with notochords like amphioxus. That’s where the story gets interesting.
Once upon a time, long, long ago, at the bottom of the ocean, there lived a family of sea-squirts. They looked like plants but they were really animals. They never moved though. They sat on the seabed sucking water through their siphons and extracting particles of food. It was a lazy way of life. They never had to exert their long cylindrical bodies. They just sat and squirted water.
When they wanted to reproduce they simply released their eggs and sperm into the water. The eggs grew into little tadpole-like larvae who swam away to settle on a distant patch of ocean bed where they planted themselves and grew into indolent adults.
Something went wrong. A mutation in a gene meant that the larvae, instead of maturing into adults, became sexually mature and continued swimming around. This is known as neotony. These are what evolved into fish.
Now the genes that coded for the transition in sea-squirts lay dormant in fish. It will have been passed down the line to all subsequent animals. The majority of our DNA is rubbish. It is old genes and meaningless sections of DNA that code for nothing. It is called satellite DNA. But if those genes were to become activated we would, on reaching puberty, transform into giant sea-squirts. Wouldn’t that be fun?
Perhaps I shouldn’t have mentioned this? It might spark a government weapons policy. They might create a gene activator, put it into a country’s water supply and transform an enemy’s entire population into quiescent sea-squirts!
Still – I suppose that is better than using nuclear weapons?