Private collectors have been selling and buying fossils, the petrified remains of ancient organisms,ever since the eighteen century. In recent years, however, the sale of fossils, particularly of dinosaurs and other large vertebrates has grown into a big business. Rare and important fossils are now being sold to private ownership for millions of dollars. This is an unfortunate development for both scientists and the general public.
The public suffers because fossils that would otherwise be donated to museums where everyone can see them are sold to private collectors who do not allow the public to view their collections.Making it harder for the public to see fossils can lead to a decline in public interest in fossils,which would be a pity.
More importantly, scientists are likely to lose access to some of the most important fossils and thereby miss out on potentially crucial discoveries about extinct life forms. Wealthy fossil buyers with a desire to own the rarest and most important fossils can spend virtually limitless amounts of money to acquire them. Scientists and the museums and universities they work for often cannot compete successfully for fossils against millionaire fossil buyers.
Moreover, commercial fossil collectors often destroy valuable scientific evidence associated with the fossils they unearth. Most commercial fossil collectors are untrained or uninterested in carrying out the careful field work and documentation that reveal the most about animal life in the past. For example, scientists have learned about the biology of nest-building dinosaurs called oviraptors by carefully observing the exact position of oviraptors fossils in the ground and the presence of other fossils in the immediate surroundings. Commercial fossil collectors typically pay no attention to how fossils lie in the ground or to the smaller fossils that may surround bigger ones.
- Main point: 私人化石买卖无论对科学家还是对公众都是一件坏事情
- Sub point 1: 公众将失去接触化石的机会，进而失去兴趣
- Sub point 2: 科学家也将失去接触化石的机会
- Sub point 3: 化石包含的珍贵数据可能遭到破坏
Of course, there are some negative consequences of selling fossils in the commercial market, but they have been greatly exaggerated. The benefits of commercial fossil trade greatly outweigh the disadvantages.
First of all, the public is likely to have greater exposure to fossils as a result of commercial fossil trade, not less exposure. Commercial fossil hunting makes a lot of fossils available for purchase,and as a result, even low-level public institutions like public schools and libraries can now routinely buy interesting fossils and display them for the public.
As for the idea that scientists will lose access to really important fossils, that ’ s not realistic either.Before anyone can put a value on a fossil, it needs to be scientifically identified, right? Well, the only people who can identify, who can really tell what a given fossil is or isn ’ t, are scientists, by performing detailed examinations and tests on the fossils themselves. So, even if a fossil is destined to go to a private collector, it has to pass through the hands of scientific experts first. This way, the scientific community is not going to miss out on anything important that ’ s out there.
Finally, whatever damage commercial fossil collectors sometimes do, if it weren ’ t for them, many fossils would simply go undiscovered because there aren ’ t that many fossil collecting operations that are run by universities and other scientific institutions. Isn ’ t it better for science to at least have more fossils being found even if we don ’ t have all the scientific data we ’ d like to have about their location and surroundings than it is to have many fossils go completely undiscovered?
- Main point: 私人化石买卖利大于弊
- Sub point 1: 公众不会失去接触化石的机会，反而更多
- Sub point 2: 科学家也不会失去接触化石的机会
- Sub point 3: 尽管化石的珍贵数据可能遭到破坏，但是要好过让大量化石长眠于地下
The lecturer rejects the ideas presented in the reading passage about the problems involved with the booming business of commercial fossil trading. In her opinion, the benefits of this new development outweigh its negative consequences.
The lecturer does not agree with the first point made in the reading-that private collectors will keep their fossil collection away from the public. She contends that the commercial trading of fossils actually makes them available to a wider public, because everyone with a budget, such as private schools and libraries, can purchase them for study and exhibition.
The lecturer goes on to refute the claim in the reading that fossil trading business prevents scientists and public museums from benefiting from fossil finds, as these parties cannot compete with wealthy private buyers to acquire important fossils for research purpose. On the contrary, she argues, scientists themselves are the first to evaluate any important fossil before it can be sold in the commercial market at a price, so the academic community does not miss any opportunity to study privately traded fossils.
Additionally, the lecturer challenges the final downside of fossil trading mentioned in the reading.
The lecturer reminds us that the damages, if any, caused by private collectors in their field operations are more than offset by the effort they have made to increase the number of fossils available to the public that would otherwise remain undiscovered.
The lecturer rejects the ideas presented in the reading passage about ________________. In her opinion, the benefits of ________outweigh its negative consequences.
The lecturer does not agree with the first point made in the reading—that __________. She contends that _________, because ___________.
The lecturer goes on to refute the claim in the reading that ______________, as__________________. On the contrary, she argues, _____________________.
Additionally, the lecturer challenges the final downside of ___________ in the reading. The lecturer reminds us that ____________________.