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Pragmatic reasons to not Kill All Humans

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HandsomeRob Leader of the Holey Brotherhood from The land of broken records
Leader of the Holey Brotherhood
May 22nd 2022 at 7:07:45 PM

So, I've had this idea in my head due to a lot of talk about Infinity War, and how the heroes never really refute Thanos' claims beyond it's wrong.

Some have argued that this creates the idea that the idea could work, and the only reason to object to it is on moral grounds.

Now, I believe the point is that it being wrong on morals grounds is all you need. Any plan that would require killing that many people is horrific, but sometimes morals just don't cut it.

Getting to the real point, I've thought a lot about Kill All Humans and the reasons for it: the belief that we're the real monsters; The Misanthrope Supreme just wanting to hurt everyone; A supposed Over Population Crisis; etc.

We already know the moral reasons, but I'd love to hear some pragmatic arguments against Kill All Humans. Ones that are solid and can be proved by science. It would be nice to hear some reasons that might actually get to anyone ruthless enough to want to kill everyone.

One Strip! One Strip!
fredhot16 Christmas is over, time to change avatars. from Baton Rogue, Louisiana. Relationship Status: Too sexy for my shirt
Christmas is over, time to change avatars.
May 22nd 2022 at 7:21:45 PM

Well, you did ask...evil grin Batter up!

FOOD! You need a reliable food source, humans are pretty randy bastards who think having more and more children, even on a planet that seems to be groaning under the weight of all those monkey-evolved bastards, is actually a good idea! Heck, a major political party in the one Superpower on Earth is trying to make it so that even having the child of their rapist is the only choice a woman can have in that case!

Just remember to keep enough humans for genetic variety because inbred humans just taste horrible and look bad, too! No amount of presentation with a good side is going to make the Hapsburg Jaw look appealing!

Science suggests that an effective population of 500 is required.

From this moment onwards, I am the King.
ECD Relationship Status: -not set
May 22nd 2022 at 7:24:44 PM

I think it depends on what their goal is? If it's just 'I hate all humans and want them to die,' argument is irrelevant. If it's Thanos's quasi-Malthusian bullshit then that theory has been subjected to extensive critiques (see e.g. )

HandsomeRob Leader of the Holey Brotherhood from The land of broken records
Leader of the Holey Brotherhood
May 22nd 2022 at 7:48:54 PM


Point well taken. Neither moral nor pragmatic takes will work when hate is strong enough.

But lets say it's for those who hate humans, but are still unsure if it's the right thing to do, or say...

...oh. There was apparently an example way back in an issue of Swamp Thing or something else, where someone Jason Woodrow the Floronic Man was gonna fuck up every human on the planet to save plants, but someone pointed out to him that with less humans, there'd be less Co 2 that plants need.

My memories of this are very loose mind you. I recall seeing it somewhere on this wiki however.

It's stuff like that. Like, would the earth really be 100% better off if we all died and all that. Short term and long term.

One Strip! One Strip!
GeneralGigan Tim & Shadow, from Nox Relationship Status: THIS CONCEPT OF 'WUV' CONFUSES AND INFURIATES US!
May 22nd 2022 at 7:58:19 PM

One potential use for everyone’s (least) favorite species of hairless ape could be as Cannon Fodder. You have 8 billion just sitting there and the higher ups are already okay with forcing them into combat, so why not use those Puny Earthlings as weapons of war?

Art by Sora Trancy.
Chortleous antelope friend Relationship Status: A cockroach, nothing can kill it.
antelope friend
May 22nd 2022 at 8:17:42 PM

[up][up]Humans are an animal—generally a predator—and thus part of the overall biosphere, if our villains care at all about that.

Edited by Chortleous on May 22nd 2022 at 10:18:43 AM

ArsThaumaturgis Relationship Status: I've been dreaming of True Love's Kiss
May 23rd 2022 at 1:37:42 AM

In terms of our threat to Earth itself, one might argue that humans are in fact not much of a threat to it.

Certainly human activity may kill a great many species—but that's hardly anything new to the biosphere.

Looking at Wikipedia, the Ordovician-Silurian events sent into extinction ~85% of all extant species—and the Permian-Triassic extinction killed off ~90-96% of all species at the time! And that's just two of the five biggest events—there have I gather been a number of minor events.

And yet, Earth's biosphere renewed itself each time. Such times may have been rough for life on the planet—but life persisted, and blossomed again. Indeed, that massive Permian-Triassic event... led into the age of the dinosaurs.

Now, it's true that humanity is currently driving a new extinction event, it seems (the Holocene extinction). But again, life on Earth has survived such events before, and recovered with time. Further, this event is driven by a sentient species—as such, there's the potential for said species to choose to stop the event.

Edited by ArsThaumaturgis on May 23rd 2022 at 10:38:06 AM

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Florien The They who said it from a backsliding democracy
The They who said it
May 23rd 2022 at 3:02:29 AM

That worms drove a mass extinction among sea life when they ruined the old ocean floor and caused sand to be a thing, that cyanobacteria poisoned the very atmosphere and slaughtered nearly all life with the toxic oxygenated atmosphere, and that those events gave us the ability to both exist as multicellular life and to go to a beach. (I mean assuming that you like going to beaches)

Who knows what exciting future environments humans could create by the changes we rain down upon other life? Already bombing-run craters in vietnam from the US invasion are a unique biosphere that may one day produce some interesting life. Certainly, we destroy unique life faster than we create it, but the fact that we have been able to achieve what, as far as we know, only ants have done before us and warped other life into total dependence upon us to satiate our hunger, creating new species in the process? The fact that we have created new biomes, altered the world?

Who's to say we are so different from the worms or the cyanobacteria of the past, destroying much today so that the future can have something interesting that it would not otherwise? It is too late to stop us from leaving our mark, we already have created a layer of processed hydrocarbons and mineral depletion in the sediment, so why not make that mark bigger and more varied, to give more opportunities for unique life that lives off of the mark we made that would not have existed without us? Build an enormous monument to our presence long after nearly everything we have currently built has collapsed and eroded completely away.

MorningStar1337 Diamond Princess from 🤔 Relationship Status: -not set
Diamond Princess
May 23rd 2022 at 5:09:22 PM

I'd think the Cannon fodder argument is also applicable to labor (forced or otherwise), experimentation, or other lateral moves. But the thing is that they are lateral moves for a reason, and thus unlikely to be made unless the circumstances are very dire.

As above, so below.
Archsage Elder God of Thumps from ur mom's house Relationship Status: Shipping fictional characters
Elder God of Thumps
May 28th 2022 at 11:12:45 AM

Slave labor is an option

There is no war in Ba Sing Se.
HandsomeRob Leader of the Holey Brotherhood from The land of broken records
Leader of the Holey Brotherhood
Jul 2nd 2022 at 6:58:34 AM

I'm not sure humans would be very good as food or cannon fodder. We're actually a fairly slow breeding species and the reason that there are so many of us now is because we've gotten better at not dying, once you use up most of the initial population it'll take some time to recoup the loses.

Jul 22nd 2022 at 6:23:03 PM

How great a world would killing all humans really make for what's left over? The ecosystem or earth itself isn't sentient, it doesn't really morally matter how it's doing compared to the actual lives of sentient beings, and as for the non-human animals living on earth... Nature Is Not Nice and the majority of them are going to die when they are just babies because Darwinian evolution produces more offspring than can survive, is it really worth killing off lots of beings who are capable and going to live lives worth living and have the potential to better their condition, for the sake of beings the vast majority of whom aren't going to live much of a life at all whether humans are around or not?

Angelspawndragon Relationship Status: YOU'RE TEARING ME APART LISA
Jul 28th 2022 at 3:45:02 AM

Simple. Humans might actually make for useful and powerful allies.

They evolved from a group of prey animals and rose to become one of the most dangerous apex predators on their planet. Not because they’re the fastest, the strongest, or the largest, but because they’re tenacious, adaptable, and highly intelligent. They’ve only just began exploring the cosmos and have already accumulated a great number of the universe’s secrets, so it’s not too far of a stretched that they’ll figure out interstellar travel within a few centuries.

Hell, in only the course of a few centuries, they’ve gone from simple armor and swords as their only means of waging war to being able to wipe out entire cities from the other side of the world (which isn’t a good thing when they use on each other).

Imagine the destruction they would be capable of once they successfully master interstellar travel, and how that could benefit you in the fight against a common enemy. Imagine what secrets they could uncover if you’ve not discovered them yourself.

Or alternatively, given how far they’ve already come and how quickly they’ve done it, imagine what they would be capable of doing to you and your people if you made an enemy out of humanity?

Edited by Angelspawndragon on Jul 28th 2022 at 3:48:10 AM

Creator of the God Is Displeased, Nature Is Not a Toy, and Takes Ten to Hold tropes
TitanJump Relationship Status: Singularity
Jul 28th 2022 at 4:20:50 AM

Or trying to actually wipe the whole species out might end up as such a tedious and drawn-out chore (due to the sheer numbers of the human race) that the aliens would rather put their time doing something productive instead of wasting it to kill humans.

Edited by TitanJump on Jul 28th 2022 at 1:21:11 PM

Aug 7th 2022 at 6:42:12 AM

I'll take a crack at this, I guess:

- If {{We're The Real Monsters}}, then another civilization might find use in having some monsters on a leash - an entire civilization of horrors that their military is 'barely containing', the threat of which is enough to cement their authority on the galactic level.

Basically, making us the "barbarian hordes" that their oh-so-benevolent leaders are doing 'everything in their power' to keep in check, and using our existence as an excuse to keep those leaders in power, and in the money.

- If the Misanthrope Supreme just wants to hurt everyone, he can do so much better than just dispatching death. After all, if you're dead, you can't feel anything any more. (Consider I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream, etcetera))

If he just hates the Human Race so gosh-darned much, then perhaps it isn't enough for us all to perish. Perhaps instead he intends to drive events to the point where, in his mind, it should become obvious to the rest of us how deeply disgusting we all are. There's probably some element of Christopher Nolan's Joker in there. Careful with that edge.

Perhaps he hates Humanity so gosh-darned much because he's "seen how much MORE we can be" and intends some mass-mutation into a "purer form" - he doesn't want to kill us, despite his hatred. If we're all dead, how are we supposed to become what we were always meant to be?

- If there's an Overpopulation Crisis, then perhaps our hypothetical villain wants that to happen. Malthusian theory is plenty maligned enough - consider a villain who wants to induce an overpopulation crisis to prove that such a thing can exist.

Basically, for a given instance of some guy wanting to "kill teh humans", consider the problem they're trying to solve by doing so, and then treat that problem instead as the intended result. Then figure out who benefits from that result, and there you go.

MorningStar1337 Diamond Princess from 🤔 Relationship Status: -not set
Diamond Princess
Aug 7th 2022 at 10:49:05 AM

Having finished F/GO's Ooku event I had came up with this idea(partially building off from [up], the secodn option specifically):

While they can destroy any species they would like, they are surrounded by factions that see genocide as the horrible evil as it is and would risk a reprisal if they committed such an act, and they are not able to destroy those enemies should they emerge without destroying themselves in the process. As such they want to neutralize humanity by other means, namely by making them dependent on them instead. To that they they reason that bringing a known species that has strong maternal instincts but a twisted sense of love would be the best bet, knowing they would likely cause humanity to be infantilised and unable to fight them or encroach on their territory (the result would be either like the people in the B&L Axiom spaceship, but earthbound or being closer to the story that inspired this post, hedonistic manchildren engaging in all sorts of depravity for want of the proper guidance, either way they would not be able to breach the sea of stars)

The pragmatic reasons here being that the instigator's self preservation (as other factions do not need pragmatism to realize that genocide is wrong and have the capability to cast judgment onto those that commit such heinous action) and that a Humanity that is reduced to effective infancy or too caught up in depravity would be just as good as a dead humanity to them.

Edited by MorningStar1337 on Aug 7th 2022 at 10:51:05 AM

As above, so below.
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