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The Biological Case Against Race
American Outlook, publication of the Hudson Institute ^
| Spring 2002
| Joseph L. Graves Jr.
Posted on 06/04/2002 5:24:31 PM PDT by cornelis
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"In the United States today, the two ethnic groups which consistently show the highest levels of academic achievement are Jews and Chinese. (Who will say nay?) Someone familiar with test scores and Ivy League admission rates might generalize from this and say, "Jews and Chinese are smart." Now, this generalization does not overlook fact that there are many Jews and Chinese of mediocre academic merits (and no doubt some who are as dumb as a stump), but it is a rational conclusion based upon observable data." Let's put this red herring to rest. Some people get nervous at generalizations because they think you're somehow saying everyone is the same way. You're not. You're just making a statistical claim. So there shouldn't be any issue here about the bare statistical claims. Yes, there are statistical differences between populations. If you compare lightly and darkly complected people you'll find statistical differences. Let's move on to the exciting part. More in a bit.
Europeans have a high degree of cultural variation within a geographical area the size of China.
So does Africa.
posted on 06/04/2002 8:35:27 PM PDT
I always wanted to meet someone who really thinks there was a flood and an Ark and two of every insect, etc. How do you explain the greater variation in Apes? Maybe Noah messed up and brough a whole mess of Apes on the ark?
Sorry, you're barking up the wrong tree. I'm not a literal Creationist.
That said, there's far more convergence between what archaeology tells us about civilization and the Genesis account than naysayers may find comfortable. "The Bible as History" by Werner Keller is a classic comparative study, if a little dated.
If you're interested in a hypothetical discussion on how you could conceivably get greater variation out of two chimps than eight humans, go to the thread linked above at #130.
BTW, are you aware that the Bible does mention that some animals were brought aboard the Ark in numbers higher than a pair? None of them apes, however.
One more thing... in the future, you might want to familiarize yourself a little more with the Bible, archaeology, genetics, and who you're talking to before popping off.
Why did Europe conquer Asia ... rather than ...
Being smarter doesn't necessarily make you meaner. My European ancestors have been some of the meanest (most territorially aggressive) in history.
At least I'm not the only one who feels this way.
"Do all blue eyed people constitute a single race?"
Gee, I dunno. Ever see any blue eyed "African-Americans"?
Someone familiar with test scores and Ivy League admission rates might generalize from this and say, "Jews and Chinese are smart."
As someone who's hung around Jewish and Asian (not just Chinese) families in California, I concluded that "Jews and Asians value education on many levels--they will save really hard and do without a lot of luxuries to put at least one of their kids through a better school than they attended, they ride their backsides about getting their homework done, they hire tutors, et cetera."
One of my high school classmates was the son of a RVNAF pilot who got out at the last moment, and came to San Diego. The father worked three jobs, one of them pretty damn menial, to be able to send his six kids to college. He rode them HARD about their studies, and demanded that they also do outside community work (always good on the selection resume), and always pushed them to develop themselves. My classmate graduated near the top of our class only six years later, and went to UCLA; his younger sister received a Congressional appointment to the Air Force Academy (and became the apple of Daddy's eye); the youngest son wound up going to Harvard on a full merit scholarship.
Most kids don't GET that kind of direction from their parents.
posted on 06/04/2002 8:40:49 PM PDT
I certainly don't view it as an accident. Different races have evolved around the planet at varying speeds relative to what we call civilizations. I'm not saying anyone is better or worse but simply different generally based on race and there are of course differences within each race and their repsective sub-groups. Take American Indians and Sub-Saharan Negroes: Neither had the wheel nor a phonetic written alphabet until introduced by an exploring race. Both of those tools are considered defining benchmarks of civilization. Did neither of these groups possess these because of racial discrepancy or because of environmental factors?....that I do not know the answer for. Why for instance are the Mandarins and the Japanese fairly highly evolved and yet Montangards or other isolated highland Asian tribes are not? In that case, it could be because of environmental factors. Why were the Romans and Greeks fairly evolved as well yet the continuing waves of Teutonic tribes spilling over from the steppes would have been considered less evolved?
No doubt determining what differences are racial and what are cultural or simply purely geographic in origin is tough but to ignore simple race as a factor is wishful "what if" thinking.
Gee, I dunno. Ever see any blue eyed "African-Americans"? Actually, I have right in my own family.
posted on 06/04/2002 8:41:40 PM PDT
There is no "biological case" against race. Dobermans, Golden Retrievers, and poodles are all the same species and undoubtably interbreed far more often than European-Americans, blacks, and Asians do - but anyone who's been around dogs much knows that all three breeds (races) of dogs are markedly different both physically and mentally.
Or has anyone forgotten the O.J. trial - at which his black-led legal defense team argued that DNA comparisons had to be made to the same racial group?
Or what about racially-linked genetic diseases - such as sickle-cell anemia?
It is time to tell the truth!
There is only a 3% difference between humans and corn. Kinda puts it in perspective doesn't it?
Then why not Sephardic or Oriental Jews?
Why? I have no idea. We're a long way from having a causal handle on any of this...
Still, Ashkenazi Jews seem to have significantly higher IQs than Sephardic Jews, Asians, whites and blacks.
Comment #163 Removed by Moderator
OK, let's take a case where race actually does some explanatory work. Question: Why did Europeans enslave Africans when it would have been cheaper to ensalve other Europeans? It's tempting, if the background presupposition is true, to venture that race plays an exlanatory role in this case. But not in virtue of any intersting biological fact. It's not the bare fact of skin pigmentation that does the explanatory work. It's the attitudes Europeans had towards differences in skin pigmentation: Imagine if they had the same attitudes towards differences in one's abilitly to taste the bitterness in fennel ...
So does Africa if you include the Northern coast of Arabs and other Caucasian tribes....some of which are mixed to varying degrees with the Negroid tribes from the South but the difference in Africa is a North/South issue...or in a limited manner between the interior and the coast which had more contact with the outside world.
It's not much different than the Americas before Colombus. Yes you had the Incas, Mayans, and Aztecs but aside from those it was all a relatively similar cultural hodgepodge. And least we forget, all the vaunted American Indian cultures of note were subdued handily by a few mean as hell Spainards on horseback with primitive firearms. Ironically, the less advanced but hardier and simply tougher Plains Indians put up a much better fight proportionately.
You said before you were having a hard time understanding. I believe you.
You need to travel to Haiti and Jamaica and observe.
You'll notice that there is a substantial difference between conditions in Haiti and Jamaica. Those differences are largely cultural.
"Or has anyone forgotten the O.J. trial - at which his black-led legal defense team argued that DNA comparisons had to be made to the same racial group?" Your citing Johnnie Cochran as an authority? I can't imagine a weaker argument.
To: Interesting Times
Askhenzim Jews even with their near Asian Khazar melding(to arguable degrees) are still what I would consider "white".....most of them I know emphatically would insist they are white....LOL
Beats me, to be honest.
Well, I think it's an important question to get at the truth of the issue.
I'm no historian, but I managed to walk over some lengthy stretches of world history reading here and there over the years. It appears that caucasian cultures are very different than, say, oriental cultures. As oriental cultures are very similar within themselves, so are caucasian cultures. That is contrasted against those of black, browns and reds, which in turn are contrasted against one another. The rule seems to remain true, alien to one another and similar within one another.
Why are people so afraid of race that they would makes fools of themselves with articles that try to refute what is as plain as a green elephant in a herd of jack rabbits? Sometimes I wonder if they think all people are born complete idiots, and have to complete at least four years at a major US university to acquire intelligence.
"Actually, I have right in my own family."
Given all of the blacks I have observed in my lifetime, I would say that if there is someone in your family who is the offspring of unmixed negroid ancestry, and has blue eyes, I would have to consider that possible, but statistically akin to a birth defect. No offense meant, and if someone can provide some documentation to the contrary, I will gladly stand corrected.
Actually I was being flippant towards ConsistentLibertarian for trying to put up a meaningless argument.
To: William Terrell
As oriental cultures are very similar within themselves, so are caucasian cultures.
Anyone who has studied the differences between French, English, and German common law wouldn't say that. They are VERY different, to the point where England would be far better served if she entered an EU-type relationship with the ANZAC nations rather than the EU, and when France and Germany try to harmonize their laws under the EU, they're going to be bickering for years, or until Germany says "BOO!" and the Frech surrender =:o)
posted on 06/04/2002 8:53:20 PM PDT
Who is Caucasian? Traditional scientific grouping include Europeans, Arabs, and Asian Indians in that catagories, yet those three cultures are rather different.
posted on 06/04/2002 8:55:59 PM PDT
I have lived and worked in dozens of "black countries" around the globe. Poverty, serial illegitimacy, tolerated polygamy, rampant crime,inability to self govern, etc are endemic in all of them....sans Bermuda and the Cayman Islands (which is mostly mulatto)...and perhaps a few other heavy tourist spots(some of the Windwards). Zim and SA are soon to follow. Is this strictly cultural, racial or is it simply that most of these countries(and cultures) are playing catch-up civilization-wise? I think it is a bit of all of it and a result of one aspect affecting the other and so on.
"Rather" different? =:o)
posted on 06/04/2002 8:56:50 PM PDT
Comment #177 Removed by Moderator
Question: did they correct for the nurture end of things?
Yes, that's why they do studies on monozygotic twins RAISED APART, i.e. in different environments.
posted on 06/04/2002 8:58:03 PM PDT
Jamaica outside of the touristy areas is mired in serious poverty and crime (even though guns are nearly outlawed). Haiti would be Sierra Leone or Liberia were it not so close to the US or shared it's island with the Dom Rep which btw is no poster child for posterity but benefits Haiti to a degree.
This is not logical -- but it is politically correct.
And given the priorities in our Universities today, the latter is all that really matters.
posted on 06/04/2002 9:00:35 PM PDT
The three groups you mentioned are indeed considered Caucazoid by experts who use such classifications. They are sub-groups.
Why isn't India and China more advanced than Europe and the United States?
[topic drift]Gwyn Dyer wrote a terrific op-ed piece several years ago with his own theory. Belongs in a whole 'nother thread (I'll post it if I can track it down), but the essence of his article was that the decline of Chinese civilization was the direct result of centralized authority because innovators and dissidents had nowhere to go, whereas in Europe there was far greater mobility so that someone getting grief in one state could go elsewhere.[/topic drift]
You did not say unmixed Negroid ancestry, you said African-Americans- a grouping that includes Mariah Carey and Michael Jordan.
posted on 06/04/2002 9:01:33 PM PDT
To: rdb3; Khepera; elwoodp; maknight; South40; condolinda; mafree; trueblackman; FRlurker...
Black conservative ping
If you want on (or off) of my black conservative ping list, please let me know via FREEPmail. (And no, you don't have to be black to be on the list!)
Don't know how I missed this one!
posted on 06/04/2002 9:03:35 PM PDT
Twin studies show that genetics accounts for... 50% of sexual behavior
I hope you've got your asbestos undies on, now that you've endorsed the reality of the Gay Gene[tm] on FR.
posted on 06/04/2002 9:03:52 PM PDT
Mariah Carey contrary to her protestations is an octoroon at best. Her dad is a fairly light mulatto Venezuelan. White guilt has caused a number of celebrities to clamor for their "blackness". Ironic isn't it? We should call it the Halle Berry syndrome. I'm black when it suits me and white when it suits me.
Yup. That's the piece that makes me question the whole premise of these studies.
posted on 06/04/2002 9:05:53 PM PDT
Under the Jim Crow laws present until the 1960's, she most certainly been subject to same restrictions as her darker counterparts, so that is irrelevant. Calling her an octoroon is speculation- I know persons born of two black person lighter than her or Halle Berry.
posted on 06/04/2002 9:09:42 PM PDT
This author is pretty much full of it. Biologically humans are all one species, so are dogs. Like different breeds of dogs there are different breeds of man.
Like it or not that is a fact and no amount of PC will ever erase it.
Myself, I do not care what color or breed you are; can you pull your weight in society ? If so, then we have no cause for true quarrel.
In The Descent of Man, published in 1871, Darwin outlined the basic reasoning that still stands today concerning the races of mankind. Darwin pointed out that if we used the techniques that naturalists used to identify race in nonhuman species, we would conclude that there really were no races in anatomically modern humans.
This is an outrageous misrepresentation. Here's Darwin:
There is however no doubt that the various races, when carefully compared and measured, differ much from each other, - as in the texture of the hair, the relative proportions of all parts of the body, the capacity of the lungs, the form and capacity of the skull, and even in the convolutions of the brain. ... The races differ also in constitution, in acclimatisation, and in liability to certain diseases. Their mental capacities are likewise very distinct; chiefly as it would appear in their emotional, but partly in their intellectual, faculties.
What Darwin argues, and what makes him liberal for his time, is that these differences are not enough to make different species out of the races, and that the variation among races is small compared to the features which distinguish humans from the other animals.
posted on 06/04/2002 9:10:48 PM PDT
We who have to live in the real world with that crazy bitch, Mother Nature, have to develop rules of thumb to survive. These academians don't know about thumbs. Their's were removed as a condition of employment.
"...a grouping that includes Mariah Carey and Michael Jordan."
I don't know about Jordan, but Carey could just as easily have decided to be "white" and would have been accepted as such, IMHO. IIRC, she is first generation mixed race (white and black parents), and as such, not germain to my point.
Are there any IQ tests that do not require some sort of basic cultural awareness on the test-taker's part?...most IQ tests, including the Binet and the Wechsler series, have at least some portions which are not culturally dependent - immediate recall, visual pattern reproduction, etc...but blacks usually have problems with these items also...even when their scores differ from whites within the error of measurement, they differ almost always by being lower, rather than equally above and below which you would expect were the differences truly random due to test variability...there have been all sorts of attempts to prove that the lower IQ's registered by blacks on average are the result of "cultural factors" My favorite involved having a group of blacks judge what items on a particular test would be most difficult for them because they were unfamiliar with the material, then looking at how another group of blacks taking the test did on those items - turned out they actually did slightly better (but not statistically so) on those items than whites taking the test...there is no consistent evidence demonstrating that the differences shown between average black and white IQ's are attributable to cultural influences.....
Hardly, the Greater New Orleans area (and the Miss Gulf Coast) has had a very lightly mixed mulatto class who never abided by Jim Crow and in fact were part of the "oppressor class". I am 7th generation Mississippian and have been around huge numbers of blacks my entire life and have never seen a woman looking like Mariah Carey who was considered "black". Halle Berry..yes. Mariah..no way. I grew up with several folks who it was fairly common knowledge that they had some slave or freedman blood and they were part of the white establishment. If you were white enough looking and had the social and economic pedigree then you were innoculated from Jim Crow.
The key is statistics. Races do exist; they are statistical concepts, not social constructs. The boundaries are blurry, especially these days when there is so much travel and marrying between ethnic groups and races, but when the genome is decoded we will see that each race lives in a definable part of DNA-space, in a statistical sense. As to how much nature or nurture matters in human variation--that's a separate discussion. People who deny the existence of races, a denial that is contrary to common sense and experience, are trying to prevent examination of that question for political reasons.
posted on 06/04/2002 9:17:30 PM PDT
People who deny the existence of races, a denial that is contrary to common sense and experience, are trying to prevent examination of that question for political reasons.
Yup. What I'm trying to figure out is for what
political reasons. It smells like the classic liberal confusion to me ... stinks. But I haven't been able to articulate that sense persuasively, yet.
To: ThePythonicCow, maro
Exactly.....the political reasons?....Hell, they are myriad. Let's not forget the psychological reasons as well: guilt, being "nice", wishing things were all the same in a Kumbaya sort of way. Funny thing is I doubt many Japanese or Mandarins lie awake at night feeling bad about being better at math than whitey or blacks. I know many Askhenazim Jews carry loads of guilt (they are raised that way...as opposed to shame which is reserved for Christians..LOL) but I'll bet nary a high IQ Jew lays around musing about how they wish they were collectively as dumb as their Caucazoid brethren. Nah, all this denial of race is just another finger in the dyke of white guilt designed by whites and for whites. It's such crap. Every race or ethnic group has their good and bad generalizations. We ought to all be able to celebrate the good and try to improve the bad without fear of recrimination. I bet right now Dr J and Michael Jordan are having a beer and lamenting how terrible it is that "white folks can't jump"....see how absurd all this self flagellation is..
Comment #198 Removed by Moderator
I don't think you are correct.
posted on 06/04/2002 9:41:57 PM PDT
Those same twin studies "prove" a genetic link to homosexuality.
No they dont.
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