Last time we talked to Lynette Strickland, she told us all about the work that she was doing to show that tortoise beetles, which vary greatly in their appearances, are actually one species. We play some of that conversation but then we catch up with Lynette to press further into the beauty and importance of diversity within a species. And it’s a short step from talking about beetles to talking about humans. Lynette tells some of her own stories that highlight the ways that science as a discipline can benefit from increased diversity and inclusion.
It’s a really interesting podcast.
On the science side I was wondering about one thing. She mentioned that one way they determined if the beetles were the same species was if they can breed together and produce viable offspring .
It makes me wonder if we should classify dogs as wolves. I know they say they are descendants of wolves always made me think they are separate species now. Simply one still alive with their living ancestors. Maybe breeding played a larger role than thought. But I also hear of red wolves being able to breed with gray wolves.
Also wondered about Sapiens vs Neanderthals and their offspring.
Definitely sad that she had a terrible joke at her expense made that could have resulted in her being hurt or completely derailed her life. Hopefully the other students learned from that. Growing up, despite not doing drugs or having drugs, I had the same rumor that I had them passed and was embarrassed by police handcuffing me in school while they searched my lockers. In high school, before going to homeschooling , I had someone say I had a bomb in locker and the school had everyone leave and I was handcuffed and placed in a car until they searched my locker. But the final straw was when for some reason the entire cheerleader squad thought I was so poor I was starving because my dad was arrested as part of a motorcycle gang that was robbing restaurants over a few weeks and they handed me this box of food while on the news in the cafeteria my dad was being broadcasted all over the news coked out. So I definitely relate to understanding being targeted despite doing nothing.
Touching life story. Glad you were able the rise above the struggles of that cruel situation. We were all socially inept and had struggles in high school, but sounds like you had epic struggles to overcome. I have a good friend from high school who to this day is embittered and isolated largely due to the cruelty suffered in that phase of life.
There is strength in our differences… so very true.