This is a short summary of David Reich's book "Ancient DNA and Human Past": In human genetics, the old concept of race is replaced with ancestry or population, while we cannot deny the existence of genetic differences across populations. But ancestry is not synonymous with race and the term was born of an urgent need to discuss genetic differences between them with a precise language. The race vocabulary is too ill-defined for scientific discussions, loaded with historical baggage. I hope people will be more educated on genetics in the near future, which eventually solves the race problem. The existence of racial differences does not justify biological races in humans.
Right! Sure, we can define things into ancestry and shared gene pools.
But this is ultimately what race already crudely corresponds to -- the issue being that some racial groups are so large that shared genetics is not as much as one would anticipate. The last common ancestors of a Filipino and a Korean would be very, very long ways back.
If you provide scientific evidence for these criteria, then I will consider you to have said the truth. If you do not provide evidence, I will assume you simply parroted racist myths from yore.
I am not sure if you stopped reading that article right after you read the bit above, or if you are being deliberately dishonest.
Here is the article in its entirety:
Among Many Peoples, Little Genomic Variety
By David Brown
Washington Post Staff Writer
Monday, June 22, 2009
There is a simplicity and all-inclusiveness to the number three -- the triangle, the Holy Trinity, three peas in a pod. So it's perhaps not surprising that the Family of Man is divided that way, too.
All of Earth's people, according to a new analysis of the genomes of 53 populations, fall into just three genetic groups. They are the products of the first and most important journey our species made -- the walk out of Africa about 70,000 years ago by a small fraction of ancestral Homo sapiens.
One group is the African. It contains the descendants of the original humans who emerged in East Africa about 200,000 years ago. The second is the Eurasian, encompassing the natives of Europe, the Middle East and Southwest Asia (east to about Pakistan). The third is the East Asian, the inhabitants of Asia, Japan and Southeast Asia, and -- thanks to the Bering Land Bridge and island-hopping in the South Pacific -- of the Americas and Oceania as well.
The existence of this ancient divergence has long been known.
What is new is a subtle but important insight into what happened on a genomic level as the human species spilled across the landscape, eventually occupying every habitable part of the planet.
People adapted to what they encountered the way all living organisms do: through natural selection. A small fraction of the mutations constantly creeping into our genes happened by chance to prove beneficial in the new circumstances outside the African homeland. Those included differences in climate, altitude, latitude, food availability, parasites, infectious diseases and lots of other things.
A person who carried, by chance, a helpful mutation was more likely to survive and procreate than someone without it. The person's offspring would then probably be endowed with the same beneficial mutation. Over thousands of generations, the new variant (what geneticists call the "derived allele") could go from being rare to being common as its carriers fared better than their brethren and contributed more descendants to the population.
Scientists have long known that regardless of ancestral home or ethnic group, everyone's genes are pretty much alike. We're all Homo sapiens. Everything else is pretty much details.
Recent research has produced a surprise, however. Population geneticists expected to find dramatic differences as they got a look at the full genomes -- about 25,000 genes -- of people of widely varying ethnic and geographic backgrounds. Specifically, they expected to find that many ethnic groups would have derived alleles that their members shared but that were uncommon or nonexistent in other groups. Each regional, ethnic group or latitude was thought to have a genomic "signature" -- the record of its recent evolution through natural selection.
But as analyses of genomes from dozens of distinct populations have rolled in -- French, Bantu, Palestinian, Yakut, Japanese -- that's not what scientists have found. Dramatic genome variation among populations turns out to be extremely rare.
Instead, it is "random genetic drift" that appears to be more important in sculpting our genes. Drift describes the chance loss of genetic variation that occurred not only in the out-of-Africa migration, but through all of human history as famine, climate change or war caused populations to crash and then recover.
Despite those calamities, it appears that all contemporary populations ended up largely the same, or only crudely distinguishable from one another, on the genome level.
Of course, small variations can result in dramatic differences. Skin color is perhaps the most obvious.
Vitamin D is made in the skin through a chemical reaction requiring ultraviolet light. Mutations in genes that lighten skin pigment -- at least a half-dozen have been found -- swept through populations as they moved away from the Equator and had less-constant sunlight.
Among West Africans, a chance mutation in the blood protein hemoglobin turned out to partially protect against malaria. It rapidly became common in places where malaria was a huge threat to survival. Similarly, a mutation allowing adults to digest milk became valuable when Middle Easterners and Europeans domesticated cattle. About 90 percent of Scandinavians now carry it.
Such clear ethnic distinctions are the exception, however, defying the expectations of many researchers. That may have been a product of the way scientists have studied genes over the last century.
Bacteria, fruit flies and other rapidly reproducing organisms were (and still are) the workhorses of genetic research.
When experimenters subject populations of them to extreme conditions, mutant genes can become pervasive in just a few generations.
Not so for people, it appears.
"When it comes to the question, 'What is the main process by which adaptation is happening?', the answers may be very different for humans and flies," said Jonathan K. Pritchard, a computational biologist at the University of Chicago. He is the senior author of a paper on the subject this month in the online journal PLoS Genetics.
In human beings, natural selection appears to work most of the time on dozens of genes in small and hard-to-detect ways. In contrast to fruit flies in the lab, useful traits involving body size, immunity, metabolism and behavior do not come about because one or two genes become ascendant.
The short stature of rain-forest dwellers such as the pygmies of central Africa, for example, appears not to be the product of a single derived allele for shortness carried by virtually everyone in the population. Instead, dozens of gene variants that slightly decrease height have each become slightly more common, and it is their total effect that results in the group's dramatically shorter stature.
"Adaptations to the environment absolutely do occur," said Joseph K. Pickrell, a graduate student at the University of Chicago who, with Graham Coop of the University of California at Davis, co-authored the recent study. "But they don't occur according to this simple model that we and others have been looking for."
Which brings us back to the tripartite Family of Man.
When a small number of people left Africa 70,000 years ago, they carried with them only a sample of the genetic diversity that had evolved on that continent in the preceding 130,000 years.
When the descendants of those migrants in turn divided into two groups 40,000 years ago, the westward-turning Eurasians and the eastward-turning East Asians each took by chance only some of the genetic diversity of their forebears.
As a result, African populations today have greater genetic diversity -- more variants in more genes -- than Eurasians or East Asians, and Eurasians somewhat more than East Asians.
But each had more than enough diversity for the trip.
So, the article actually shows how dividing humanity into three races is scientifically incorrect.
You just provided evidence that you were wrong.
There is one small point first: I provided a link to a 2009 article that said that we can be scientifically divided into 3 basic races. You have so desperately wanted such a thing -- so I got it.
Now, you want to read in very heavily to the same article which says that the differences are not fundamentally significant.
Sure, OK, it does say that. I read it, and was aware of that, but I was excited to point out that there were scientists as late as 2009 using words like this because, I assume, in 2009 people weren't gaslit enough to gobble down political redefinitions.
But perhaps redefinition is not the right thing to say - I should be more charitable.
Let's take about this in a different way and hopefully get to the crux of the problem:
(2) I think we actually have to talk about how words work.
There are words that have conventional meaning
, and then there are words that have specialized meaning
Conventional meaning is not that disputable. I cannot say that "evil" in an everyday context can mean something far more specific.
Similarly, I cannot say that "House music" refers to a specialized meaning, or some boiled down distortion where "house music" refers to anything that the "house" (club) plays, thus "Drum n Bass" is actually "House music" when you go to the Joker Red club in Hongdae because Joker Red plays DnB... House (as a music genre) has a conventional meaning, and it could have further technical meanings or reductionist meanings.
Now, there would be specialized terms.
Specialized terms are generally determined by the specialists using them.
However, of course, like all things, they can be subject to abuse and politicized definitions.
Moreover, they are subject to the perceptions of reality that the people bring with them that approach them.
What you are basically doing is taking the politicized definitions of race
used by contemporary scientists,
but these are things that are actually highly biased. Perhaps just as biased as the previous definitions of what race are.
This is why we get political definitions of transgenderism that imply it is not a disorder,
yet it is a medical condition that requires hormone replacement therapy and potentially complex surgeries that fundamentally alter the body.
But, you will find a recent article which suggests that it is absolutely not a disorder in any way
in spite of the fact that it can clearly be called a disorder through conventional definitions.
Two clear points come from this: I. Scientists use politicized definitions -- this is why our conceptions of things can change drastically in a few decades.II. It is acceptable for us to assert our own definitions and to rely on conventional realities.
We can take the same raw data, and we can assert our own definitions, just as much as any vague nebulous word of "scientists" that the media is asserting.
It probably makes more sense that way.
I've actually offered to not refer to these things as races because I think that it can clog discussion,
buit you absolutely insist on dragging your feet when having an honest discussion.
What do you think of our semantical issue, now?
Things like the number of species of dogs, or bears turned out to be wrong.
And of course, it inspired whole generations of racist people into thinking that the traditional races are actually real.
The way that breeds, species, etc., are defined can be quite different. I could theoretically say that long-haired chihuahuas and short-haired chihuahuas are two different breeds, and could refine it further. Nothing is to say that I am wrong, nor is there anything to say that I am right, because a word like 'breed' can be arbitrary.
A word like 'race' can be arbitrary.
Species does have more of a basis in the hard, scientific lexicon, but it is irrelevant to what we are saying.
Why are some population groups better than others? Because you have racist feels about them?
This would be arbitrary, too! We could say that populations with greater health are superior to other populations,
and then obviouisly the French and the Japanese would be considered elites, but the people in Zimbabwe would be on the bottom.
We could measure these things through income, IQ, prosocial behavior, etc.
How do you think someone contemplating mass migration would like to think about them?
I think that, for immigration into Korea, it would make sense to give preferential treatment to population groups that are (I) Culturally similar, (II) Low crime, (III) higher development or development potential, (IV) educational attainment or educational potential.
I am sure we could tack on other categories as well.
None of this has to be "genetic," while aspects of this would potentially have roots in genetics.