A couple of weeks ago, I officially apologized to chimps everywhere for the many times liberal web dwellers have compared George W. Bush to chimpanzees. I did so in response to a new study showing that in certain situations chimps have better memory skills than human beings.
It seems that we have some more apologizing to do.
Chimps performed about as well as college students at mental addition, U.S. researchers said on Monday in a finding that suggests non-verbal math skills are not unique to humans.
The research from Duke University follows the finding by Japanese researchers earlier this month that young chimpanzees performed better than human adults at a memory game.
Prior studies have found non-human primates can match numbers of objects, compare numbers and choose the larger number of two sets of objects.
“This is the first study that looked at whether or not they could make explicit decisions that were based on mathematical types of calculations,” said Jessica Cantlon, a cognitive neuroscience researcher at Duke, whose work appeared in the Public Library of Science journal PLoS Biology (www.plosbiology.org).
As I said last time: on behalf of liberal humanoids everywhere, allow me to apologize to chimpanzees worldwide for the years of defamatory comparisons to George W. Bush. I hope they’ll find it within their impressive craniums to forgive us. I’m not sure I would.