Free Republic
Browse · Search
General/Chat
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

DNA pioneer James Watson is blacker than he thought
The Times Online ^ | December 9, 2007

Posted on 12/10/2007 6:57:09 AM PST by Daffynition

JAMES WATSON, the DNA pioneer who claimed Africans are less intelligent than whites, has been found to have 16 times more genes of black origin than the average white European.

An analysis of his genome shows that 16% of his genes are likely to have come from a black ancestor of African descent. By contrast, most people of European descent would have no more than 1%.

The study was made possible when he allowed his genome - the map of all his genes - to be published on the internet in the interests of science.

“This level is what you would expect in someone who had a great-grandparent who was African,” said Kari Stefansson of deCODE Genetics, whose company carried out the analysis. “It was very surprising to get this result for Jim.”

Watson won the Nobel prize, with Francis Crick and Maurice Wilkins, after working out the structure of DNA in 1953. However, he provoked an outcry earlier this year when he suggested black people were genetically less intelligent than whites.

This weekend his critics savoured the wry twist of fate. Sir John Sulston, the Nobel laureate who helped lead the consortium that decoded the human genome, said the discovery was ironic in view of Watson’s opinions on race. “I never did agree with Watson’s remarks,” he said. “We do not understand enough about intelligence to generalise about race.”

The backlash against Watson forced him to step down as chancellor of Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, New York state, after 39 years at the helm. He had said he was “inherently gloomy about the prospects for Africa” because “all our social policies are based on the fact that their intelligence is the same as ours - whereas all the testing says not really”.

The analysis by deCODE Genetics, an Icelandic company, also shows a further 9% of Watson’s genes are likely to have come from an ancestor of Asian descent. Watson was not available for comment.


TOPICS: Education; Health/Medicine; Science
KEYWORDS: cuenelsonmunz; genetics; gigo; godsgravesglyphs; haha; iq; irony; mtdna; signaphinothing
Oops.
1 posted on 12/10/2007 6:57:11 AM PST by Daffynition
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: Daffynition

Doh!


2 posted on 12/10/2007 6:59:47 AM PST by claudiustg (You know it. I know it.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Daffynition

Can he still be called a racist with this discovery? Probably not.


3 posted on 12/10/2007 7:00:33 AM PST by rineaux (How dare you, how dare you question the Clinton's wrecked record.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Daffynition
JAMES WATSON, the DNA pioneer who claimed Africans are less intelligent than whites, has been found to have 16 times more genes of black origin than the average white European.

I love it.. I always love to point out to people who claim they are 'pure' anything that genetically, the differences we identify as racial (skin color, hair color, etc) are smaller than the genetic differences that separate individuals, technically, if you trace everyone back, we all are just mutts. :->

4 posted on 12/10/2007 7:01:54 AM PST by mnehring (..one candidate did not display any moderateness or liberalism...Fred Thompson - Rush Limbaugh)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Daffynition
They should check the First Black President on this!

(about as likely as Chelsea getting DNA-tested for Web Hubbell genes, I'm sure).

5 posted on 12/10/2007 7:02:09 AM PST by traditional1 (Thompson/Hunter '08)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Daffynition

I don’t see any irony here. Watson did not say that any white person will be smarter than any black person.


6 posted on 12/10/2007 7:02:53 AM PST by freespirited (I'm voting for the GOP nominee.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Daffynition
James Watson

James Watson, 1955

He does kind of have that North African, Berber look.

7 posted on 12/10/2007 7:03:14 AM PST by SpringheelJack
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: mnehrling
I always love to point out to people who claim they are 'pure' anything that genetically, the differences we identify as racial (skin color, hair color, etc) are smaller than the genetic differences that separate individuals

Whatever floats your boat, but it's lost on me how that renders the differences trivial. I've never been able to figure out how a full standard deviation difference in average intelligence between two groups is insignificant, and I certainly can't tell you with a straight face that a two standard deviation average difference is.

8 posted on 12/10/2007 7:12:55 AM PST by freespirited (I'm voting for the GOP nominee.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: freespirited

Intelligence is more based on cultural and environmental factors, not racial. In all situations being equal testing scenarios, you don’t see the standard deviation that you do if you pull those with diverse environmental backgrounds.


9 posted on 12/10/2007 7:17:19 AM PST by mnehring (..one candidate did not display any moderateness or liberalism...Fred Thompson - Rush Limbaugh)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 8 | View Replies]

To: mnehrling
Intelligence is more based on cultural and environmental factors, not racial. In all situations being equal testing scenarios, you don’t see the standard deviation that you do if you pull those with diverse environmental backgrounds.

Sorry, but that is utter nonsense. The one standard deviation difference between white and black populations in the U.S. is one of the most consistent findings in psychometrics.

How much of this is genetic and how much is environmental is of course a subject of considerable debate. I think 50/50 is as good an estimate as any.

10 posted on 12/10/2007 7:22:33 AM PST by freespirited (I'm voting for the GOP nominee.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: freespirited
I would love to see your source on this. Studies like the Miele and Grasso studies have shown that, while there are some genetic traits that impact intelligence, they are not distinctly racially passed, more related to individual family groups, and this still doesn’t overcome environmental impacts. At that, the infamous the Milwaukee Project pretty much debunked the blanket ‘racial’ difference argument.
11 posted on 12/10/2007 8:15:07 AM PST by mnehring (..one candidate did not display any moderateness or liberalism...Fred Thompson - Rush Limbaugh)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: Daffynition

A great grandparent who was black? I can trace all of my great grandparents.I would think he could too.


12 posted on 12/10/2007 8:36:30 AM PST by Gay State Conservative (Wanna see how bad it can get? Elect Hillary and find out.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Daffynition; CholeraJoe; blam; StayAt HomeMother; Ernest_at_the_Beach; 1ofmanyfree; 24Karet; ...

· join list or digest · view topics · view or post blog · bookmark · post a topic ·

 
Gods
Graves
Glyphs
Thanks Daffynition.

To all -- please ping me to other topics which are appropriate for the GGG list.
GGG managers are Blam, StayAt HomeMother, and Ernest_at_the_Beach
 

· Google · Archaeologica · ArchaeoBlog · Archaeology magazine · Biblical Archaeology Society ·
· Mirabilis · Texas AM Anthropology News · Yahoo Anthro & Archaeo ·
· History or Science & Nature Podcasts · Excerpt, or Link only? · cgk's list of ping lists ·


13 posted on 12/10/2007 8:41:43 AM PST by SunkenCiv (Profile updated Monday, December 10, 2007____________________https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: mnehrling
I know pretty much nothing about genetics but I know a little bit about medical research and the “nature vs nurture” question.When deciding a “nature vs nurture” issue one method they use is to study identical twins raised apart and adoptees in general.Have any such studies been conducted in connection to intelligence?
14 posted on 12/10/2007 8:41:47 AM PST by Gay State Conservative (Wanna see how bad it can get? Elect Hillary and find out.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 11 | View Replies]

Matt Ridley:
Nature via Nurture

by Stan Pinnegar
November 21, 2003
Some scientists, he says, believe that chimpanzees do not have a theory of mind, that is, they cannot imagine what another chimp is thinking. But studies show ambiguity. Chimps, we are told, regularly engage in deception. A baby chimp, for example, pretended he was being attacked by an adolescent so his mother would let him suckle her. Baboons, the author tells us, have performed well enough at computer discrimination tasks to show they are capable of abstract reasoning.

In the chapter The Madness of Causes we learn about such mental illnesses as bipolar disorder and, in Blame Mother, schizophrenia. The author makes the sobering point that heritability of schizophrenia is high in Western society, roughly 80 per cent, or about the same as body weight and much more than personality. And did you know that a mouse has 1036 olfactory sensors in its nose?
Here's the book:
Nature Via Nurture: Genes, Experience, and What Makes Us Human Nature Via Nurture:
Genes, Experience, and
What Makes Us Human

by Matt Ridley

15 posted on 12/10/2007 8:46:50 AM PST by SunkenCiv (Profile updated Monday, December 10, 2007____________________https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Gay State Conservative

Whoops, sorry, meant to ping you to #15.

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/chat/1937345/posts?page=15#15


16 posted on 12/10/2007 8:48:30 AM PST by SunkenCiv (Profile updated Monday, December 10, 2007____________________https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 14 | View Replies]

To: Gay State Conservative
The difference is that the twin studies deal with unique family groups while the prior discussion was counteracting a blanket ‘racial’ judgment. The fact is that what we see in individual family groups don’t reflect what the whole of the represented race because the family group differences far outweigh the racial ones (ie, any racial group is so diverse in family differences, blanket statements cannot be made for a whole based on what we describe as ‘race’)
17 posted on 12/10/2007 8:49:44 AM PST by mnehring (..one candidate did not display any moderateness or liberalism...Fred Thompson - Rush Limbaugh)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 14 | View Replies]

To: Daffynition

Puts me in mind of what a joke the racial classification system is. Puerto Rico is shown as being 85% white, when anyone with a pair of eyes and a knowledge of history knows that this is not true. Most PRs have at least 25%-50% black African ancestry.


18 posted on 12/10/2007 8:50:19 AM PST by Clemenza (Rudy Giuliani, like Pesto and Seattle, belongs in the scrap heap of '90s Culture)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Daffynition; SunkenCiv

Reminds me of “The Human Stain” in which a college professor who has hidden the secret that he is black is fired for making an innocent remark construed as racist.


19 posted on 12/10/2007 8:55:11 AM PST by CholeraJoe (Vote for Mike Huckabee or Chuck Norris will give you a wedgie!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Daffynition

Does that work?
I have a great-great-grandparent who walked out of the lowlands of Georgia, who always claimed to be Native American. Can genealogy tests now tell me if she was NA or of mixed NA-African heritage?


20 posted on 12/10/2007 8:55:33 AM PST by JerseyHighlander
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Daffynition

I had the displeasure of attending a talk by Watson while I was at college in 1977. The talk was supposed to be about recombinant DNA, a hot topic at the time. Instead, Watson used all his time to insult by name numerous biologists that he disagreed with on some matter or another. He was remarkably nasty and vicious. Race didn’t enter that particular discussion, just personal spite. What a schmuck!


21 posted on 12/10/2007 9:23:22 AM PST by jalisco555 ("The only thing we learn from history is that we never learn from history." Winston Churchill)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Gay State Conservative
A great grandparent who was black? I can trace all of my great grandparents.I would think he could too.

I found out just two years ago that I have a black great-grandfather.

22 posted on 12/10/2007 9:24:49 AM PST by jalisco555 ("The only thing we learn from history is that we never learn from history." Winston Churchill)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | View Replies]

To: SunkenCiv

16%? Who cares but him?


23 posted on 12/10/2007 9:30:11 AM PST by Monkey Face (If we are what we eat, I'm cheap, fast and easy.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 13 | View Replies]

To: Monkey Face

The more samples, the more these kinds of conclusions will be, uh, superseded by new evidence. IOW, no one should get too worked up about any of this.


24 posted on 12/10/2007 9:40:56 AM PST by SunkenCiv (Profile updated Monday, December 10, 2007____________________https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 23 | View Replies]

To: SunkenCiv

Since my genealogy is traceable to the Middle East and even Egypt, I suspect my “whiteness” is just a covering. Yah, that’s it! It’s camoflage, called: SKIN!


25 posted on 12/10/2007 9:43:44 AM PST by Monkey Face (If we are what we eat, I'm cheap, fast and easy.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 24 | View Replies]

To: mnehrling
Selection for IQ possibly genetic, with a correlation of heritable diseases:

Ashkenazim have the highest average IQ of any ethnic group, scoring 12 to 15 points above the European average. They are also strongly represented in fields and occupations requiring high cognitive ability. For instance, European-origin Jews account for 27 percent of U.S. Nobel science prize winners but make up only about 3 percent of the U.S. population.

But the group is also associated with neurological disorders, including Tay-Sachs, Gaucher's, and Niemann-Pick. Tay-Sachs is a fatal inherited disease of the central nervous system. Sufferers lack an enzyme needed to break down fatty substances in the brain and nerve cells. Gauchers and Niemann-Pick are similar, often fatal diseases.

http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2005/07/0718_050718_ashkenazim.html

26 posted on 12/10/2007 9:47:42 AM PST by secretagent
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 17 | View Replies]

To: Monkey Face

;’) ...unless the “Cairo” you found was actually in Illinois... ;’)


27 posted on 12/10/2007 9:50:06 AM PST by SunkenCiv (Profile updated Monday, December 10, 2007____________________https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 25 | View Replies]

To: SunkenCiv

Er...no. This was before there WAS an Illinoise!


28 posted on 12/10/2007 10:06:34 AM PST by Monkey Face (If we are what we eat, I'm cheap, fast and easy.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 27 | View Replies]

To: Daffynition
JAMES WATSON, the DNA pioneer who claimed Africans are less intelligent than whites, has been found to have 16 times more genes of black origin than the average white European.

WOW Imagine how much smarter he'd be if he was pure!!

(Joking of course)

29 posted on 12/10/2007 10:26:56 AM PST by John O (God Save America (Please))
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Daffynition

When 1 thinks about it, this is about as equivalent “nanna-nanna-nanna” as when liberals gleefully accuse conservatives of being homosexual - a “lifestyle” they supposedly love.

So do they like that he’s black or hate it?


30 posted on 12/10/2007 10:37:56 AM PST by the OlLine Rebel (Common sense is an uncommon virtue.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Monkey Face

;’) Also, ask anybody in the area, and find out that the city in Illinois is pronounced “cay roh”. ;’)


31 posted on 12/10/2007 10:39:41 AM PST by SunkenCiv (Profile updated Monday, December 10, 2007____________________https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 28 | View Replies]

To: freespirited

I too. “Nurture” (environment) is way overplayed these days. It is the dominant theory these days that every problem (and maybe every good thing, too) is due to:

-the parents methods
-the lack of 1 parent
-the neighbors
-the owner/master
-the previous owner/master
etc, etc, etc

It’s as true in dogs and horses as it is in humans. It’s always in vogue to blame whoever has the dog as the cause of the dog’s “viciousness”, etc. Also if they cower in fear - it’s because of some bad human owner, not the dam nor her genetics nor the rest of genetics. Never mind all the problem children out there - it’s not genetics, but the raising. Or at least what they had to see in the neighborhood around them.

I don’t want to discredit environmental factors altogether, but we have to be serious. These days, it seems 95% of “blame” goes on “the environment” whereas it’s undoubtedly closer to 50/50.


32 posted on 12/10/2007 10:44:48 AM PST by the OlLine Rebel (Common sense is an uncommon virtue.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

"This level is what you would expect in someone who had a great-grandparent who was African," said Kari Stefansson of deCODE Genetics, whose company carried out the analysis.
We each have eight (if it's less, I don't want to know), which works out to 12.5 per cent. :')
33 posted on 12/10/2007 10:45:07 AM PST by SunkenCiv (Profile updated Monday, December 10, 2007____________________https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Gay State Conservative

No, they’re saying it’s the EQUIVALENT to having a single black great-grandparent.

Actually, as stated prior, that’s only 12%, not 16%.

It might also be stated to be equivalent to 1 great-grand AND 1 great-great-great-grandparent. (12%+3%=15%)


34 posted on 12/10/2007 10:52:54 AM PST by the OlLine Rebel (Common sense is an uncommon virtue.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | View Replies]

To: Daffynition

Meaningless piffle.


35 posted on 12/10/2007 10:59:32 AM PST by metesky ("Brethren, leave us go amongst them." Rev. Capt. Samuel Johnston Clayton - Ward Bond- The Searchers)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: traditional1

They would have to be careful that his DNA “sample” did not also contain VD.


36 posted on 12/10/2007 11:13:26 AM PST by Lee'sGhost (Crom! Non-Sequitur = Pee Wee Herman.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: freespirited; All
White and black populations...how much is genetic and how much environmental...I think 50/50 is as good an estimate as any.

One must consider other factors. Where the smarter blacks able to escape being captured and sent to the US? Were the more highly intelligent more emotionally sensitive or rebellious and thus died or were killed on the boat trip or in slavery? There is a place in the South called Ibo Landing. An entire boat load of Ibo slaves after being taken off the slave ship in chains marched themselves into the sea and drowned rather than be slaves. Many Ibos were killed in Nigeria a few decades ago. They were hated by other Nigerians for being smart and canny traders (like Jews). Also Africa had large, civilized cities and towns. The slaves were often captured in small villages in the Jungle. Did the smarter more ambitious Africans gravitate to the cities? My brother traveled by truck, train, bus and thumb across about 10 African countries. He said it was fascinating to see some areas where there were large numbers of educated, cultures Africans and others were the level of culture and apparent intelligence was very much lower. I have traveled into a number of rural and small town areas of this country and noticed quite a number of less than adequate people who simply could not survive in the complexities of city living--mentally and physically handicapped as some of them obviously were.

37 posted on 12/10/2007 12:58:39 PM PST by gleeaikin
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

Comment #38 Removed by Moderator

To: mnehrling; Gay State Conservative; All
I have long been interested in racial matters having taken Genetics and Heredity in college many years ago.

My German ancestry mother has a geneology created all the way back to the 11th Century predominantly in East Prussia. On the other hand my blond, ice blue eyed, red headed husband was astonished when his mother told him shortly before she died that he is 1/16th American Indian. Since there was Mongolian Tartar in my ancestry I then realized it made sense that one son has dark hair and swarthy coloring and definitely looked like he could have Indian blood. The other son with medium brown hair and fair skin has high cheekbones and almond eyes. He had an epicanthic fold when he was a baby. He is now married to a woman from Puerto Rico, who knows she has Taino Indian in her ancestry. Both their children look very Latino.

A number of the most vicious Nazis had a grandparent or great grandparent who was Jewish. Regarding the influence of environment, there is the fascinating new science of epigenetics, wherein they are discovering the affect of environmental factors on the expression of genes in such subjects as weight gain, cancer, etc. They have found environmental differences in twin studies with epigenetics.

39 posted on 12/10/2007 1:22:38 PM PST by gleeaikin
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 11 | View Replies]

To: metesky

I agree. Even if there was a correlation to IQ/race, how would this actually benefit mankind.


40 posted on 12/10/2007 2:19:30 PM PST by Daffynition (The quieter you become, the more you are able to hear.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 35 | View Replies]

To: jalisco555

Thanks. Your assessment is all I need to know about this guy.


41 posted on 12/10/2007 2:21:28 PM PST by Daffynition (The quieter you become, the more you are able to hear.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 21 | View Replies]

To: Gay State Conservative

The percentage of African genes is as if 1 great grandparent were African origin. If that 16%were divided among several lines then you would have to go much farther back to find several African ancestors.


42 posted on 12/10/2007 2:21:46 PM PST by ThanhPhero (di hanh huong den La Vang)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | View Replies]

To: gleeaikin
"A number of the most vicious Nazis had a grandparent or great grandparent who was Jewish."

You just reminded me of my favorite part line in Saving Private Ryan, where the Jewish soldier yells at the German voice on the megaphone: "Your father was circumcised by my rabbi!"

43 posted on 12/10/2007 4:59:39 PM PST by Dan Middleton
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 39 | View Replies]

The Who - Substitute

44 posted on 12/11/2007 12:08:42 AM PST by SunkenCiv (Profile updated Monday, December 10, 2007____________________https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Gay State Conservative
I can trace all of my great grandparents.

No you can't. None of us can. Prior to the development of DNA testing it was not possible to scientifically determine who the father of a baby was.

In DNA testing done in recent years for divorce cases, about 25% of the children are proven to not be the genetic offspring of the mother's husband.

I'm sure this was less common in the past, but I'm also sure it happened. The chance that anybody who claims they can accurately trace their ancestry back many generations is true is statistically very small.

45 posted on 12/11/2007 6:10:38 AM PST by Sherman Logan
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | View Replies]

To: mnehrling; the OlLine Rebel
I would love to see your source on this. Studies like the Miele and Grasso studies have shown that, while there are some genetic traits that impact intelligence, they are not distinctly racially passed, more related to individual family groups, and this still doesn’t overcome environmental impacts.

Take a look at ANY large data set. The military intelligence data; NAEP scores; SAT scores (not the best choice since it is not the most representative sample). Every time you will see a one std deviation difference between white and black test-takers. It's a fact of life whether we like it or not.

At that, the infamous the Milwaukee Project pretty much debunked the blanket ‘racial’ difference argument.

I would like to think I am conversing with someone who understands that one study proves nothing. Especially when it is the only study to get the results reported. AFAIK, no other study has been able to duplicate the results. If I missed something, there are still far more negative studies. And how practical was Milwaukee? IIRC, the gains in IQ cost something on the order of 25K per IQ point.

An example of a contrary study: the Minnesota Adoption Study. When black infants were adopted into white households they did not end up enjoying the same IQs as the white siblings with whom they are raised. Benefits were shown initially, but they were unfortunately transient. By their teen years, the effect was gone.

I have learned to accept the advice of Philip Dick. "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away."

(Stickin' with my 50/50 estimate BTW.)

46 posted on 12/11/2007 7:15:02 AM PST by freespirited (I'm voting for the GOP nominee.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 11 | View Replies]

To: mnehrling

The deviation would be slightly smaller if given the same environment, but it still exists, and always will. For example, whilst the average African has an IQ of around 70 (Average White American = 101, average Japanese = 110), the average Black American has an IQ of around 85. Still one full standard deviation below the White American (with whom they were raised in the same society) average.


47 posted on 12/14/2007 9:49:34 AM PST by Hatter6
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
General/Chat
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson