View Poll Results: Does race actually exist?

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  • Yes, humans are divided into different races (white, black, mixed, etc.)

    28 50.00%
  • No, we are all the same race

    24 42.86%
  • I don't know/other

    4 7.14%
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Thread: Does race actually exist?[W:115]

  1. #51
    onomatopoeic
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    re: Does race actually exist?[W:115]

    The Reality of Human Differences by Sarich and Miele
    [........]
    Sarich and Miele then address Gould's race-does-not-exist mantra: "The basic reason Gould gives for his no-race position is this: 'Homo sapiens is a young species, its division into races even more recent. This historical context has not supplied enough time for the evolution of substantial differences.' (This from the man famous for his theory [with Niles Eldridge] of punctuated equilibria.)" They then go on to explain why Gould is wrong.

    They looked at differences between human races, between males and females, and differences between primates—particularly chimpanzees and gorillas. What is astounding is that there is greater morphological distance between human races than there are between the two chimpanzee species or between gorilla species/subspecies.

    That is, the differences between human Races are Real, they are Substantial, and they did not take millions of years to diverge. Humans, rapidly occupying every available niche after leaving Africa 50,000 years ago, has been under enormous pressure to adapt. To do this meant selection for morphological, pharmacogenetic, behavioral, and cognitive traits. Not only are there many human races, but there are at least as many races as there are ecological niches, and only humans can create their own niches with forethought. What this means is not only Are there human Races, but humans have evolved uniquely to alter there own cultures or ecologies, further increasing unique selection pressures....

    Sarich and Miele explain: "Molecular data suggest that the two chimpanzee lineages separated around 1.5 million years ago; the comparable human figure is on the order of 15,000 years. In other words, the two chimp lineages are 100-fold older, yet show the same amount of variation. That is a remarkable result, the implications of which take a while to sink in. The implications follow this logic: Human races are very strongly marked morphologically; human races are very young; so much variation developing in so short a period of time implies, indeed almost certainly requires, functionality; there is no good reason to think that behavior should somehow be exempt from this pattern of functional variability. [...….]
    We are the "same race" not because there Aren't Genetically and Morphologically Identifiable Group differences.
    We are Only the 'same race' because of an easily debatable political-type decision, Not a purely scientific/taxonomic one.
    Other Animals with the same or Less distance Do get subspecies.
    'Science' has identified these differences and even a 10 year old can with good accuracy.

    See my next post on this point also:
    Last edited by mbig; 03-05-14 at 06:13 PM.
    I'm personally sick of not being able to dunk a basketball because of racism.
    anon

  2. #52
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    re: Does race actually exist?[W:115]

    Reply 2
    From Jerry A Coyne, perhaps the foremost expert on the planet in evolution and the author of the standard Textoook 'Speciation'.

    Credentials
    Quote Originally Posted by http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jerry_Coyne
    Jerry Allen Coyne (born December 30, 1949[2]) is an American professor of biology, known for his commentary on the intelligent design debate. A prolific scientist, he has published dozens of papers, elucidating on the theory of evolution. He is currently a professor at the University of Chicago in the Department of Ecology and Evolution. His concentration is speciation and ecological and evolutionary genetics, particularly as they involve the fruit fly, Drosophila.[3] He is the author of the standard text Speciation and the bestselling science popularization Why Evolution Is True and maintains a website by the same name.

    Coyne graduated with a B.S. in biology from the College of William & Mary in 1971. He started graduate work at Rockefeller University under Theodosius Dobzhansky before logistical complications (draft) forced a hiatus.
    He then earned a Ph.D. in biology at Harvard University, studying under Richard Lewontin, and went on to do a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of California, Davis with Timothy Prout.

    He was awarded the Guggenheim Fellowship in 1989, was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2007, and received the "Emperor Has No Clothes" award from the Freedom from Religion Foundation in 2011.

    Coyne has served as President (2011) and Vice President (1996) of the Society for the Study of Evolution, and as Associate Editor of Evolution (1985–1988; 1994–2000) and The American Naturalist (1990–1993). He currently teaches evolutionary biology, speciation, genetic analysis, social issues and scientific knowledge, and scientific speaking and writing.

    His work is widely published in scientific journals as well as in such mainstream venues as 'The New York Times, the Times Literary Supplement', and The New Republic. His research interests include population and evolutionary genetics, speciation, ecological and quantitative genetics, chromosome evolution, and sperm competition.

    Coyne is a critic of creationism[4] including theistic evolution[5][6] and intelligent design, which he calls "the latest pseudoscientific incarnation of religious creationism, cleverly crafted by a new group of enthusiasts to circumvent recent legal restrictions."[7]

    The Ecuadoran frog Atelopus coynei is named after Coyne. He collected the holotype in a swamp on a frogging trip to western Ecuador as a student in the late 1970s.[8][...]
    Article
    Are there human races? Why Evolution Is True
    Jerry A Coyne

    One of the touchiest subjects in human evolutionary biology —or human biology in general — is the question of whether there are human races.....

    But from that sordid scientific past has come a backlash: the subject of human races, or even the idea that they exist, has become Taboo. And this Despite the palpable morphological Differences between human groups — differences that must be based on Genetic Differences and Would, if seen in Other species, lead to their classification as either Races or Subspecies (the terms are pretty interchangeable in biology). Racial delimitation could, critics say, lead to a resurgence of racism, racial profiling, or even eugenics.
    [............]
    Well, if that’s the consensus, I am an outlier. I do think that human races exist in the sense that biologists apply the term to animals....

    What are races?
    In my own field of evolutionary biology, races of animals (also called “subspecies” or “ecotypes”) are morphologically distinguishable populations that live in allopatry (i.e. are geographically separated). There is no firm criterion on how much morphological difference it takes to delimit a race. Races of mice, for example, are described solely on the basis of difference in coat color, which could involve only one or two genes.

    Under that criterion, are there human Races?
    Yes.
    As we all know, there are morphologically different groups of people who live in different areas, though those differences are blurring due to recent innovations in transportation that have led to more admixture between human groups.

    How many human races are there?

    That’s pretty much unanswerable, because human variation is nested in groups, for their ancestry, which is based on evolutionary differences, is nested in groups. So, for example, one could delimit “Caucasians” as a race, but within that group there are genetically different and morphologically different subgroups, including Finns, southern Europeans, Bedouins, and the like. The number of human races delimited by biologists has ranged from three to over 30.

    How different are the races genetically?
    Not very different. [......]But since the delimitation of races has historically depended Not on the degree of underlying genetic differences but Only on the existence of Some genetic difference that causes morphological difference, the genetic similarity of races Does Not mean that they Don’t exist...."
    Last edited by mbig; 03-05-14 at 06:25 PM.
    I'm personally sick of not being able to dunk a basketball because of racism.
    anon

  3. #53
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    re: Does race actually exist?[W:115]

    Race is just a manifestation of our human tendency to have everything neatly categorized. The question is where does one race stop and another begin? it is arbitrary, and inaccurate. There is no black and white, but instead many nuanced shades in between.

    off to go dig up a previous post I had made on this subject now....

    Quote Originally Posted by me (in a thread that has since been locked)
    Race is a very ambiguous term, no matter how it is defined. Is an Eskimo the same race as a Navajo Indian, and are they the same race as an Indian in the Amazon? Is the Eskimo the same race as people in Siberia, [who are the] same race as Mongolians? Are the Mongolians the same race as Japanese people, and are they the same race as a Thai person, and is an Indian (not American Indian) the same race as the Thai person, who is the same race as the Japanese person who is the same race as the Mongolian who is the same race as the Siberian who is the same race as the Eskimo who is the same race as the Navajo who is the same race as the Amazon Indian??
    Law Enforcement Against Prohibition
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    re: Does race actually exist?[W:115]

    Quote Originally Posted by Canell View Post
    Recognizing races doesn't make one a racist.
    It is, however, the required first step.

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    re: Does race actually exist?[W:115]

    Quote Originally Posted by marduc View Post
    Race is just a manifestation of our human tendency to have everything neatly categorized. The question is where does one race stop and another begin? it is arbitrary, and inaccurate. There is no black and white, but instead many nuanced shades in between.

    off to go dig up a previous post I had made on this subject now....
    In the back country of Maine many old timers will be quick to tell you
    "I've lived here all my life ... But I'm not from here."
    None of us truly are.

  6. #56
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    re: Does race actually exist?[W:115]

    Quote Originally Posted by Canell View Post
    Yes, they do and there is nothing wrong with that unless you don't try to exterminate (lower) races or one races is developing at the expense of another.
    But we are all humans, that's for sure.
    So what race is a "lower" race?
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    re: Does race actually exist?[W:115]

    We are all homo-sapiens... one race. Different ethnicities...
    Quote Originally Posted by Bucky View Post
    I have pooped in public, even in public neighborhoods.
    Quote Originally Posted by Absentglare View Post
    You can successfully wipe your ass with toilet paper, that doesn't mean that you should.

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    re: Does race actually exist?[W:115]

    In terms of "is X race/ethnicity/whatever different biologically". Yes, it is, if only slightly.

    IMO not to a large enough degree that any one "race" is superior, apart from perhaps a few very specific areas/things which are invariably overshadowed by individual differences.


    Most if not all of the problems that are involved in "racism", however.... Those are social constructs - people like being in exclusive groups so they can feel superior to other persons, however illogical or unreasonable those ideas may be.

    Ideally, every human would ascribe to a "group/race/whatever" that included all humans (or in some futuristic sci-fi situation, perhaps more than just humans.

    But we have "Americans", "Europeans", "Asians", etc. And subsets for all of the groups you could think of...and subsets for those.
    People like labels, because they allow for more easily identifiable characteristics without having to analyze the individual persons.

    Of course the problem is that such analysis is generally correct. I sometimes wonder if this is because people identify with a group and then - subconsciously or consciously - change their behavior so they better fit the stereotype. Hell it probably is.

    I catch myself doing so on small scales, now that I think about it.
    Education.

    Sometimes I think we're alone. Sometimes I think we're not. In either case, the thought is staggering. ~ R. Buckminster Fuller

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    re: Does race actually exist?[W:115]

    Quote Originally Posted by The Mark View Post
    In terms of "is X race/ethnicity/whatever different biologically". Yes, it is, if only slightly.

    IMO not to a large enough degree that any one "race" is superior, apart from perhaps a few very specific areas/things which are invariably overshadowed by individual differences.


    Most if not all of the problems that are involved in "racism", however.... Those are social constructs - people like being in exclusive groups so they can feel superior to other persons, however illogical or unreasonable those ideas may be.

    Ideally, every human would ascribe to a "group/race/whatever" that included all humans (or in some futuristic sci-fi situation, perhaps more than just humans.

    But we have "Americans", "Europeans", "Asians", etc. And subsets for all of the groups you could think of...and subsets for those.
    People like labels, because they allow for more easily identifiable characteristics without having to analyze the individual persons.

    Of course the problem is that such analysis is generally correct. I sometimes wonder if this is because people identify with a group and then - subconsciously or consciously - change their behavior so they better fit the stereotype. Hell it probably is.

    I catch myself doing so on small scales, now that I think about it.
    I could not disagree more. People stick together when they have things in common.

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    re: Does race actually exist?[W:115]

    Quote Originally Posted by Bodhisattva View Post
    We are all homo-sapiens... one race. Different ethnicities...
    Nope, some of you are Neanderthals.

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