NotPoliticallyCorrect

Home » Evolution » “Race is a Social Construct”: Part 1

“Race is a Social Construct”: Part 1

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 118 other followers

Follow me on Twitter

JP Rushton

Richard Lynn

L:inda Gottfredson

Goodreads

3200 words

“Race is a social construct”. You may hear that a lot from uneducated people. They may say that since the definition of race is ‘ever-changing’, that race doesn’t exist and that it only exists in our minds. They obviously have no understanding of genetics and how we came to be today. If you want to get technical, everything is a social construct. The Universe is a social construct. We’re only giving definitions to what we perceive something to be, so with the logic of ‘race being a social construct’, then everything is a social construct. With that logic, the Universe doesn’t exist because it’s a social construct.

I will look at 3 articles in the first of many articles on this subject. One from Angela Onwuachi-Willig, Bill Nye and Ta-Nehisi Coates. All 3 have extremely wrong views on the biological reality of race, and I will prove that here. I will quote from each article and show how they are wrong with scientific studies as well as point out their bad logic.

I will begin with Angela Onwuachi-Willig. In her article for The New York TimesRace and Racial Identities Are Social Constructs, she says that because of the ever-changing definition of the term race, that it is a social construct and not a biological one.

Race is not biological. It is a social construct. There is no gene or cluster of genes common to all blacks or all whites. Were race “real” in the genetic sense, racial classifications for individuals would remain constant across boundaries. Yet, a person who could be categorized as black in the United States might be considered white in Brazil or colored in South Africa.

Race is not biological, it is a construct. There are no clusters of genes or one gene that is common in blacks or whites. That is correct, but her statement about race being social and not a biological construct is clearly ignorant as I will show below.

i-6505999ec389c9cb434f204f598809d8-race

You can see in the picture above that races clearly do cluster in different clusters from other races. She is right about the changing definitions, especially Brazil, but Brazil is a special case. So much mixing has gone on in Brazil that there is evidence of skin color becoming independent of ancestry. One outlier example doesn’t make race a ‘social construct’. South Africa is also another one. They classify race in South Africa with four categories: black, colored, Indian/Asian or white. Obama would have been called ‘colored’ in South Africa today. But, again, just because there are changing definitions of race throughout the globe, doesn’t mean that race doesn’t exist.

Like race, racial identity can be fluid. How one perceives her racial identity can shift with experience and time, and not simply for those who are multiracial. These shifts in racial identity can end in categories that our society, which insists on the rigidity of race, has not even yet defined.

Is she making an argument for being ‘trans-racial’? I bet Rachel Dolezal would be happy.

In a society where being white (regardless of one’s socioeconomic class background or other disadvantages) means living a life with white skin privileges — such as being presumed safe, competent and noncriminal — whites who begin to experience discrimination because of their intimate connection with someone of another race, or who regularly see their loved ones fall prey to racial discrimination, may begin to no longer feel white. After all, their lived reality does not align with the social meaning of their whiteness.

I always hear about ‘white privilege’ but never get an actual definition of what it means. People complain about ‘white privilege’ because they, of course, don’t understand the biological reality of race. Anything that may prove innate differences between individuals or races they just can’t imagine exists because of what they’ve been taught their whole lives. She is talking about those whites who are in the BLM movement. The false ideals of egalitarianism are the cause of this.

More than 50 years ago, Congress enacted the most comprehensive antidiscrimination legislation in history, the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Half a century later in 2015, the same gaps in racial inequality remain or have grown deeper. Today, the unemployment rate for African-Americans remains more than double that for whites, public schools are more segregated now than they were in the 1950s and young black males are 21 times more likely to be shot and killed by the police than their white male peers. Even a white fourth-grade teacher in Texas, Karen Fitzgibbons, openly advocated for the racial segregation of the 1950s and 1960s on her Facebook page.

Right. IQ is the cause of the unemployment rate of African Americans. Not any imaginary forces such as ‘white privilege’. Public schools are more segregated today due to people wanting to be with others genetically similar to themselves. Blacks cause themselves to get shot and killed by police due to their actions during altercations with police officers. Oh no, someone has not politically correct opinions!! She should lose her job and never work a good job again!

That’s what the Left does. They attempt to shout you down with buzzwords so you can’t calmly and intellectually prove your case.

She is clearly wrong. Good thing this is called an ‘opinion piece’, there were few actual facts in it.

Now to touch on Bill Nye’s views on race. It’s funny. I loved his show when I was a kid. Now, knowing the truth about racial differences, hearing him say that made me lose all respect for him. He’s a mechanical engineer with a Bs from Cornell University. People only take what he says because he is ‘The Science Guy’ when he has no training in what he is talking about.

“We obsess about whether our dog is a pug-Jack Russell terrier mix with corgi overtones and an oaky finish. ‘An approachable little dog,’ whatever. They’re all dogs, okay? And so the idea of a purebred is just a human construct. There’s no such thing – in a sense there’s no such thing as a purebred dog.”

That right there is a fallacy. As with the woman’s article above, they both use the ‘continuum fallacy‘. The continuum fallacy is when someone rejects a vague claim because it’s not as precise as they want it to be. ‘There are no pure races’ or ‘there are no pure breeds of dog’, that doesn’t mean that genes don’t cluster differently, showing genetic differentiation.

“If a Papua New Guinean hooks up with a Swedish person all you get is a human.  There’s no new thing you’re going to get. You just get a human. Japanese woman jumping the African guy, all you get is a human. They’re all humans. So this is a lesson to be learned. There really is, for humankind there’s really no such thing as race. There’s different tribes but not different races. We’re all one species.”

Right. That doesn’t mean there is no such thing as race. Grizzly bears and polar bears can mate to create a prizzly bear. Does that mean species doesn’t exist? (I will touch on speciation at the end of this article.) Once again, that statement doesn’t deny the biological reality of race, as you can see from the picture above.

355d5b456573a2f5552037a86d5fab5b

Researchers have proven, scientifically, that humans are all one people. The color of our ancestors’ skin is a consequence of ultra-violet light, of latitude and climate.

We all belong to the same genus, Homo, but again, that doesn’t disprove race. He’s correct in saying that our ancestors’ skin is a consequence of UV light of latitude and climate, and right there he proves us correct in stating that sunlight differences depending on where your ancestors evolved in the world are the cause of racial differences.

Despite our recent sad conflicts here in the U.S., there really is no such thing, scientifically, as race. We are all one species. Each one of us more alike than different.

In this statement, he is saying the first sentence because of recent racial relations in the U.S. A clear politically-motivated statement.

“Each one of us more alike than different.’ That is correct, but, yet again, doesn’t disprove the reality of race. Geneticists estimate that humans will differ, on average, at 3 million base pairs in their DNA. That’s more than enough for distinct racial classification, as well as enough to differentiate us.

Is that supposed to mean anything? Cats have 90 percent homologous genes with humans, 82% with dogs, 80% with cows, 79% with chimpanzees, 69% with rats and 67% with mice.

90% of the mouse genome could be lined up with a region on the human genome.

99% of mouse genes turn out to have analogues in humans.

As you can see from the links above, we are all extremely genetically related to animals that are clearly extremely physically different from us humans. This shows, that the differences in humans are down to not how genetically distant we are from other animals in the animal kingdom, but how the differing genes we have are expressed.

We all came from Africa. We’re all made from the same star dust. We’re all going to live and die on the same planet – a pale blue dot in the vastness of space. We have to work together!

And finally, you can see his way of saying that racial differences mean nothing because ‘we all come from Africa’ and ‘ we’re all made from star dust’. That may be true, but that doesn’t do anything to acknowledge, or even show that racial differences are meaningless.

Bill Nye has absolutely no authority to speak on this matter. Liberals then eat this up and cite Bill Nye as proof that race doesn’t exist, which is clearly untrue as I have shown.

Finally, I will get to Ta-Nehisi Coates’ ‘The Social Construction of Race‘. He cites my favorite blogger/geneticist Razib Khan, so this should be good.

Ancestry — where my great-great-great-great grandparents are from — is a fact. What you call people with that particular ancestry is not. It changes depending on where you are in the world, when you are there, and who has power.

Right with the first sentence, and with the second. It seems he’s attempting to use what the first article I cited says: that due to ever-changing racial definitions that race doesn’t exist as we believe it to be. He says that ancestry is a fact, well wouldn’t that same ancestry be your racial classification? I am not following his logic. Just because there are differing views on the definition of race throughout the globe, doesn’t mean that there is no biological reality of race.

He cites someone else who states:

“Race” as a term is very nebulous. But human subgroups with similar ancestries can have group differences in DNA — and intelligence is highly unlikely to have no genetic basis at all (although most now believe its impact is greatly qualified by cultural and developmental differences).

Cultural and developmental differences. The cultural differences are thrown out. According to the editorial ‘Mainstream Science on Intelligence’, which came out shortly after The Bell Curve was published, one of their points is that IQ tests are not culturally biased if the individual speaks English. If they are not English speakers, they will either get a test in their native language or get Raven’s Progressive Matrices, which is a ‘culture free’ IQ test as it’s based on pattern recognition and has no writing involved. Developmental differences, yes. White mothers have a better prenatal environment then do black mothers, which is biological. Developmental differences are innate within the two populations.

I do not know. Andrew is more inclined to believe that there is some group-wide genetic explanation for the IQ difference. I am more inclined to believe that the difference lies in how those groups have been treated. One thing that I am not convinced by is controlling for income and education.

Oh, the old ‘Stereotype Threat‘ canard. The paper, which was cited more than 5000 times, states that African-Americans do worse on tests in which they are told that they are being judged on their race. Well, a meta-analysis of 55 published and unpublished studies came out and what was found that the it shows clear publication bias. Either due to people not knowing how to read scientific papers or more insidious tactics. The effect varies across studies and is small. Though elite university undergrads may underperform on tests of cognitive tests due to Stereotype Threat, this effect doesn’t generalize to non-adapted standardized tests, high-stakes settings and less academically gifted test takers. Stereotype Threat cannot explain the difference in mean cognitive test performance between African Americans and European Americans. (pg 68)

In the mid-20th century, as we have been documenting, it was the policy of this country to deny African-Americans access to the same methods of wealth-building, that it was making available to whites.
African-Americans can’t build the same type of wealth due to mean genetic differences in IQ.
This is not merely a problem for your local  diversity and sensitivity workshop. It is a problem of wealth and power. When you create a situation in which a community has a disproportionate number of poor people, and then you hyper-segregate that community, you multiply the problems of poverty for the entire community–poor or not. That is to say that black individuals are not simply poorer and less wealthier than white individuals.  Because of segregation, black individuals and white individuals of the same income and same wealth, do not live in communities of equal wealth.
Wealth and power are directly related to IQ. Communities have a disproportionate amount of poor people due to them being low-IQ, blacks, whites or Asians, you can’t get away from low-IQ being the cause of poverty. People hyper-segregate themselves, see my Genetic Similarity article. Again, segregation is due to GST, not any insidious plot to hold anyone down. I’ve spoken multiple time on how oxytocin is responsible for ‘racism’ (ethnocentrism), and everything he is saying is just proving my point.
What bearing does segregation have on IQ differential? I don’t know. My skepticism of genetics is rooted in the fact that arguments for genetic inferiority among people of African ancestry are old, and generally have not fared well. My skepticism is also rooted in the belief that power generally seeks to justify itself. The prospect of actual equality among the races is frightening. If black and white people truly are equal on a bone-deep level, then the game might really be rigged, and we might actually have to do something about it. I think there’s much more evidence of that rigging, then there is evidence of cognitive deficiency .
There is no evidence for racial/ethnic equality. Any ‘evidence’ is shoddy and has NOT and NEVER WILL BE replicated because any studies that show racial equality are either badly administered or they never do a follow-up study at adulthood.  Blacks and whites are not equal ‘on a bone-deep level’. What kind of statement is that? There is WAY MORE evidence for cognitive deficiency than for ‘rigging’ of the game to hold blacks down in America.
I must add that I can not pretend to be a dispassionate, nor impartial observer. I come from a particular place. I’ve now been out in the world, and seen how other people in other places live. They don’t strike me as more intelligent. They strike me as better armed. There’s nothing scientific about that. But I think we all have core faiths. These are mine. You’ve been warned.
“My personal anecdotal experiences mean more to scientific studies on race and intelligence.” Where have we all heard that before? Too bad your ‘core faiths’ are just that Mr. Coates: FAITH.

Regardless of the method used in the analyses, all researchers reached estimated very close to that obtained by Lewontin: The differences observed by the subdivisions (populations, groups of populations, races) represented 10 to 15 percent of the total genetic variation found within the human species. Formally, these findings demonstrate, first, that the species is indeed subdivided into genetically definable groups of individuals and, second, that atleast some of these groups correspond to those defined by anthropologists as races on the basis of physical characters. They do not however, settle the arguments regarding the methods of racial classification. Unfortunately, Lewontin did not specify before initiating his analysis how large the difference has to be in order to call the groups “races”.

Consequently, the results of the studies have led population geneticists to two diametrically opposite conclusions. Lewontin called the observed differences trivial, and proclaimed that “racial classification is now seen to be of no genetic or taxonomic significance” so that “no justification can be offered for its continuance.” This view is echoed by authors of similar studies, who seem to be surprised that genetic variation within populations is greater than that between them. By contrast, Sewell Wright who can hardly be taken for a dilettante in questions of population genetics, has stated emphatically that if differences of this magnitude were observed in any other species, the groups they distinguish would be called subspecies.

One can extend Wright’s argument even further. The more than 200 species of haplochromine fishes in Lake Victoria differ from each other much less than the human races in their neural genes, although they are presumably distinguished by genes that control differences in their external appearances. The same can be said about atleast some of the currently recognized species of Darwin’s finches and other examples of recent adaptive radiations. In all these cases, reproductively isolated groups are impossible to tell apart by the methods used to measure differences in human races. Obviously, human races are not reproductively isolated (interracial marriages are common and the progenies of such marriages are fully fertile) but the external differences between them are comparable to cichlid fishes and Darwin’s finches. Under these circumstances, to claim that the genetic differences between the human races are trivial is a more political statement than a scientific argument. Trivial by what criterion? How much difference would Lewontin and those who side with him consider non-trivial?

By mixing science with politics, geneticists and anthropologists are committing the same infraction of which they are accusing other scientists, who they themselves label as racist. Even worse, by labelling the genetic differences as insignificant, they play into the hand of genuine racists who can demolish this claim and so further their own agenda. It is intellectually more honest to acknowledge and then point out that by no means imply supremacy of one race over others. This can be done by demonstrating that the differences are in genes that cannot be linked to any features that would be required for the preeminence of a particular race.

It’s clear that racial classification does exist. The creator of Fst, Sewall Wright, says that a Fst distance of .15 is more than enough for speciation (differing racial classifications). It directly refutes Lewontin, who put his political ideology of Marxism over science. Those cichlids in Lake Victoria are a perfect example that though the definition of ‘species’ does change depending on which researcher you speak to, it doesn’t discount that there are real and physical genetic differences between races and ethnicities.

In conclusion, the term “race is a social construct” is a deliberately intellectually dishonest statement, or a statement used to hide the truth for more insidious things to happen due to the non-acknowledgement of race.

Advertisements

22 Comments

  1. […] not a social construct, but a biological reality. If this debate is “about as meaningful as attempting to compare […]

    Like

  2. […] all humans are less than 1 percent different, many people take this to mean that “Race is a social construct“. The stranglehold that race-denying individuals have had on our society for the past fifty […]

    Like

  3. Devin says:

    Your section on clustering is dishonest. The amount of clusters to search for is decided in advance by the researcher. I’m not trying to say that disproves the rest of your article. But you should be more intellectually honest than that.

    Like

    • RaceRealist says:

      I further expounded on this here:

      Race Is a Social Construct of a Biological Reality

      The amount of clusters to search for is decided in advance by the researcher.

      Right. When five clusters are chosen, there are 5 clusters corresponding to the five racial groups: Europeans, Africans, East Asians, ‘Native’ Americans, and Pacific Islanders/Australoids (see Wade, 2014).

      Furthermore, Tang et al (2005) shows that self-identified ethnicity.race is an almost perfect predictor for ancestry, being 99,86 percent perfect (n=3,336, 5 were wrong, which was .14 percent of the sample).

      Like

  4. Devin says:

    Yes, you can create clusters corresponding to race, you can do that for any geographically distinct population. So if I choose markers in Portugal, Spain, and Inuit populations all other populations would appear as combinations of those three geographically distinct groups.

    So, if you are working with genetic markets specifically designed to identify continental traits, and then you ask people with those traits if they identify with those traits, then it’s no coincidence that they match up most of the time. I don’t know what you’re trying to prove with this study. It’s almost tautological. When you work with 1000’s of those markers the clusters change and disappear very quickly. Whoever you ask is going to fit into one of those 5 groups even if don’t fit nicely into one of those groups.

    Often these studies are only working with 50 or so people from each population, and that is supposed to represent the entire human race. My question to you is, if you sampled many populations and increased K (since the Tang study uses a similar methodology to the Rosenberg one) gradually to say, 40 combined with a model for allele frequency correlations, including not only continental but subcontinental and overlooked populations, do you think that these clusters would still form the way they do in your graph? Do you have such a study to support your contention? If not, why do you insist that this is the natural classification of the human species? “There are genetic markers that can tell us about ancestry” and “we can neatly group HBD into classifications called race” are two very, very different statements.

    Like

    • RaceRealist says:

      So, if you are working with genetic markets specifically designed to identify continental traits, and then you ask people with those traits if they identify with those traits, then it’s no coincidence that they match up most of the time.

      The fact of the matter is, what we call ‘race’—that is, the names we make for racial groupings—have a biological basis. The fact that they cluster in PCA shows the validity of race as a biological reality.

      “I don’t know what you’re trying to prove with this study. It’s almost tautological. When you work with 1000’s of those markers the clusters change and disappear very quickly.”

      Do you have a reference?

      Whoever you ask is going to fit into one of those 5 groups even if don’t fit nicely into one of those groups.

      Human variation is enough to create major phenotypic differences between the macro-races. See my article Gene Expression by Race.

      My question to you is, if you sampled many populations and increased K (since the Tang study uses a similar methodology to the Rosenberg one) gradually to say, 40 combined with a model for allele frequency correlations, including not only continental but subcontinental and overlooked populations, do you think that these clusters would still form the way they do in your graph?

      Studies on different ethnies do show differing distances. See:

      Of course human genetic variation is more complex than the arbitrary names and delineations we use, but it is still a construct of a biological reality.

      Do you have such a study to support your contention? If not, why do you insist that this is the natural classification of the human species? “There are genetic markers that can tell us about ancestry” and “we can neatly group HBD into classifications called race” are two very, very different statements.

      The point is, human genetic variation exists. Racial classification does have a basis in biology, and it is extremely informative to know one’s ancestry/race/deme/whatever you want to call it. Human variation is great enough so that race is a biological reality. You spent time arguing how the variation exists without addressing the reality that race is a biological meaningful construct (of a biological reality).

      Like

  5. Devin says:

    Also:
    “It’s clear that racial classification does exist. The creator of Fst, Sewall Wright, says that a Fst distance of .15 is more than enough for speciation (differing racial classifications).”

    No. That isn’t what Sewall said. He laid (and he himself said these values were arbitrary) out Fst values for differing amounts of variation. >0.25 was the criteria for great genetic variation. This has become the one typically used for racial classification in biology, https://www.researchgate.net/publication/287937657_Subspecies_and_Classification.

    Even then, subspecies is an arbitrary classification and how it’s used and applied generally depends on the researcher’s preference among other factors (like how much gene flow has occurred between the populations). The fact that human Fst values are consistently much lower than the normally applied criterion of .25 is not an argument for race realism, it is an argument against it.

    Like

    • RaceRealist says:

      No. That isn’t what Sewall said. He laid (and he himself said these values were arbitrary) out Fst values for differing amounts of variation. >0.25 was the criteria for great genetic variation. This has become the one typically used for racial classification in biology,

      Any values we use are arbitrary. But when we are consistent with our classifications, then we get meaningful results.

      Sewall Wright believed that if these differences were seen in any other organisms that they would be considered supspecies:

      By contrast, Sewell Wright who can hardly be taken for a dilettante in questions of population genetics, has stated emphatically that if differences of this magnitude were observed in any other species, the groups they distinguish would be called subspecies.

      Where Do We Come From?: The Molecular Evidence for Human Descent By Jan Klein, Naoyuki Takahata pg 389 and 390
      And:

      There is also no question, however, that populations that have long inhabited widely separated parts of the world should, in general, be considered to be of different subspecies by the usual criterion that most individuals of such populations can be allocated correctly by inspection. It does not require a trained anthropologist to classify an array of Englishmen, West Africans, and Chinese with 100% accuracy by features, skin color, and type of hair in spite of so much variability within each of these groups that every individual can easily be distinguished from every other.

      Sewall Wright on race differences, group selection, and cultural selection among humans (1978)

      Even then, subspecies is an arbitrary classification and how it’s used and applied generally depends on the researcher’s preference among other factors (like how much gene flow has occurred between the populations). The fact that human Fst values are consistently much lower than the normally applied criterion of .25 is not an argument for race realism, it is an argument against it.

      Of course our classification schemes are arbitrary. I like the Mayr’s biological species model, for the record. However, phenotypic differences mean genotypic differences.

      Humans have a higher Fst than other species with recognized subspecies. therefore, genetic differences between races is enough to consider the human races subspecies.

      Human Races Exist: Refuting 11 Common Arguments Against the Existence of Race

      Like

  6. Devin says:

    The fact of the matter is, what we call ‘race’—that is, the names we make for racial groupings—have a biological basis. The fact that they cluster in PCA shows the validity of race as a biological reality.

    You are missing my point. My point is not that if you sample individuals they will not cluster, quite the contrary. My point is that finding neat little racial clusters is completely dependent on how you sample. In my example, if we were to only use genetic markers from an Inuit population, a Porutgallian population and a Spanish one, the ethnic groups would tend to cluster with their geographically distinct population. Not only that, but all other populations would appear as a mix of allele’s from these three populations, which is absurd. It’s also important to note the STRUCTURE program that Rosenberg, Tang, etc have used for clustering is an essentialist

    Do you have a reference?
    I do have this study from 2009 that looked at 54,000 SNP’s across several ethnicities and compared an African population. People tended to cluster with their linguistic group, but some populations clustered outside of it. http://www.picb.ac.cn/~xushua/index.files/Publications/2009_Science_326_1541-1545.pdf

    It’s also important to note the STRUCTURE program that Rosenberg, Tang, etc have used for clustering is an essentialist program. The assumptions of the algorithm are also questionable; for example, users specify the number of parental populations and provide their allele frequencies from externally provided data, or users can have the program statistically group the sample and optimize their allele frequencies, or users can have the program optimize the number of parental populations (K) and their allele frequencies. The parental populations are assumed to be randomly mating, with Hardy Weinberg equilibrium genotype proportions, and STRUCTURE minimizes any linkage disequilibrium between them. The Hardy Weinberg equilibrium refers to the genotype proportions that result from applying the binomial theorem to the probabilities that each genotype mates other genotypes. Linkage disequilibrium results when genotypes at two different genetic loci are not found according to the binomial theorem. There are a number of reasons why neither of these conditions will hold, which include past natural selection and genetic drift. All of these assumptions can be challenged, and on the base of it STRUCTURE assumes that the parental populations conform to only the simplest kind of genetic structure and that the world once harbored distinct and independently evolved populations. You can challenge all these assumptions, and I prefer the “isolation by distance” method which when used can give “non-structured results” http://journals.plos.org/plosgenetics/article?id=10.1371/journal.pgen.0030051.

    Human variation is enough to create major phenotypic differences between the macro-races. See my article Gene Expression by Race.
    It seems to be that you are jumping between “race is a common ancestor”, “race is taxonomical” and “race is phenotypic”. Stick to one definition please.

    Of course human genetic variation is more complex than the arbitrary names and delineations we use, but it is still a construct of a biological reality.
    Ahh and here we see a motte-bailey retreat. I’m well aware that I’m not genetically the same as Jamal from Somalia. The way you are using “race” is exactly what’s being argued against. Just because humans are diverse does not mean any way to classify that diversify is scientifically valid. That ethnic study is more or less what I meant, when I said the racial clusters you see would change very quickly. Now imagine if you did that across the whole population with an enormous sample size.

    The point is, human genetic variation exists.
    Correct.

    You spent time arguing how the variation exists without addressing the reality that race is a biological meaningful construct (of a biological reality)
    No, race is a way of classifying it. It is how you are classifying it. I am arguing against how you are classifying it, and whether the methods you are using to vindicate your conclusion – “racial groups” are a biological reality are legitimate.

    Like

    • RaceRealist says:

      You are missing my point. My point is not that if you sample individuals they will not cluster, quite the contrary. My point is that finding neat little racial clusters is completely dependent on how you sample. In my example, if we were to only use genetic markers from an Inuit population, a Porutgallian population and a Spanish one, the ethnic groups would tend to cluster with their geographically distinct population.

      Funny enough, we have cases with the latter as remote of using Neanderthal DNA and Chimps as a proxy from Paleoafricans.

      https://evolutionistx.wordpress.com/2015/09/09/so-why-do-native-americans-have-so-much-neanderthal-dna/

      Not only that, but all other populations would appear as a mix of allele’s from these three populations, which is absurd. It’s also important to note the STRUCTURE program that Rosenberg, Tang, etc have used for clustering is an essentialist program.

      Source?

      It seems to be that you are jumping between “race is a common ancestor”, “race is taxonomical” and “race is phenotypic”. Stick to one definition please.

      I define race genetically, not phenotypically. Though phenotypic differences show genotypic differences and vice versa. So phenotype is a good proxy for genotype.

      No, race is a way of classifying it. It is how you are classifying it. I am arguing against how you are classifying it, and whether the methods you are using to vindicate your conclusion – “racial groups” are a biological reality are legitimate.

      Tang et al 2005 write:

      To do so would require inclusion of the nonadmixed ancestral groups (such as Africans and Native Americans) and the use of the “ADMIX” option of structure. What our results do show is that the (admixed) groups included have approximated within-group random mating sufficiently long enough to give rise to distinct genetic clusters.

      What would be the closest to ‘nonadmixed group’ in your opinion?

      Like

  7. Devin says:

    Also my point with the Fst is that you lied in the OP about humans meeting Wrights criteria, which isn’t even his criteria. Mean Fst for humans is .11. You claimed they hit the .15 Wright gave. This is not so. His 30 year old comments are irrelevant, he was most likely a product of his time when it came to race and racism.

    The trained zoologist in the example would most likely be unable to place an African back into his specific ethnicity, same goes for the Chinamen. This is again, switching between definitions on what you mean by race. Now you are using phenotypic criteria instead of population or taxonomical. From what I’ve read on your blog, you switch all the time between them depending on which one is most convenient. Sometimes within the same post such as the one with the Richard Dawkins quote. Sometimes when classifying a subspecies, only phenotypes are used. Sometimes it’s due to isolation. It’s a tenuous classification. I am contesting that subspecies or race is biologically relevant. We either have a race for every single geographically distinct ethnic group, or we have none. If subspecies as a classification facilities study of the overall species it can be used. This is not your goal.

    Like

    • RaceRealist says:

      Also my point with the Fst is that you lied in the OP about humans meeting Wrights criteria, which isn’t even his criteria. Mean Fst for humans is .11. You claimed they hit the .15 Wright gave. This is not so. His 30 year old comments are irrelevant, he was most likely a product of his time when it came to race and racism.

      I didn’t lie. I showed a quote from Wright himself; which I also supported with more data. There are five races; these five races cluster with each other.

      I forget where I read the .15 figure, so excuse that. Overall, humans with an average Fst of .12 don’t have distinct subspecies, but species with less genetic variation do? Hmm..

      The trained zoologist in the example would most likely be unable to place an African back into his specific ethnicity, same goes for the Chinamen. This is again, switching between definitions on what you mean by race.

      One can analyze the skull and see which macro-race it came from. Whether or not ethnicity can be defined depends on phenotypic divergence. The same could be said for a geneticist but in regards to genetic divergence.

      Now you are using phenotypic criteria instead of population or taxonomical. From what I’ve read on your blog, you switch all the time between them depending on which one is most convenient.

      Rarely do I use phenotype to define race. I can tell there are five distinct races of Man just by looking at phenotype, but this isn’t the case for most people. I use phenotype to show yet another difference between the races, I define race genetically. People like PumpkinPerson define race by phenotype, lumping in Australoids and Melanesians into a large ‘Pan African’ race. But genetic studies say otherwise, as seen above.

      We either have a race for every single geographically distinct ethnic group, or we have none.

      Read this.

      Where the wild clines aren’t

      If subspecies as a classification facilities study of the overall species it can be used. This is not your goal.

      Irrelevant labeling.

      Like

  8. Devin says:

    I didn’t lie. I showed a quote from Wright himself; which I also supported with more data. There are five races; these five races cluster with each other.

    No you lied. You quoted Wright out of context in the early 1980’s as if Wright has said what he said with full knowledge of modern Genomics, and you acted as if humans had a mean Fst of .15 and that this was Wrights cutoff for subspecies was. Neither of these two things are true. In turn, I provided you with an academic journal which while there are some exceptions (some subspecies of wolf for example, are based just on phenotype with no evolutionary significance), explained that Wrights >.25 is the cutoff for subspecies and not the .15 you claimed. Yet because of a few exceptions you ignore the information I gave you, have not changed the OP to reflect that human mean Fst is not near .15 and no where near the .25 usually used and therefore being dishonest.

    . Overall, humans with an average Fst of .12 don’t have distinct subspecies, but species with less genetic variation do?

    Yes, because subspecies (like I said above) can be used without any evolutionary significance. There can also be animals that have multiple subspecies with a much lower Fst than humans do in simpler organisms, such as small insects. Overall, it depends on the scientist, the context and the feedback of his peers but in general >.25 is the criterion used. The reason humans are not considered subspecies is because unlike some other organisms with lower Fst’s, humans had and have, extremely high gene flow. If you went back 50 generations, we would all be related to each other by a cousin. Low gene flow – a criteria for subspecies is far from applicable in this case.

    I use phenotype to show yet another difference between the races, I define race genetically. People like PumpkinPerson define race by phenotype, lumping in Australoids and Melanesians into a large ‘Pan African’ race. But genetic studies say otherwise, as seen above.

    You should avoid using crude phenotypic definitions of race to support a “race” based in population genetics, it makes you come off like an inconsistent opportunist who uses crude 19th century evolutionary biology to push his political agenda.

    Irrelevant labeling.

    I read the link and wasn’t impressed, and it’s not irrelevant. The reason traditional races are nonsense is because they are not reflective genetically. Their original purpose was to uncover homogenous populations within and heterogeneous in between. This criteria does not fit any of the 3 major races. You’d have to increase the amount to around 300, say we have one.

    Like

    • RaceRealist says:

      No you lied. You quoted Wright out of context in the early 1980’s as if Wright has said what he said with full knowledge of modern Genomics, and you acted as if humans had a mean Fst of .15 and that this was Wrights cutoff for subspecies was. Neither of these two things are true. In turn, I provided you with an academic journal which while there are some exceptions (some subspecies of wolf for example, are based just on phenotype with no evolutionary significance), explained that Wrights >.25 is the cutoff for subspecies and not the .15 you claimed. Yet because of a few exceptions you ignore the information I gave you, have not changed the OP to reflect that human mean Fst is not near .15 and no where near the .25 usually used and therefore being dishonest.

      The quote said that, at the time, races would be considered subspecies with that Fst value at the time, not that by his Fst values.

      Here is a citation for the .15 figure I brought up in the article.

      If differences of the magnitude seen in human races were seen in other species, would they be considered subspecies? They probably would be. Classification is arbitrary. But genetic structure is not. And while not quite subspecies admittedly, the point is that human race show evidence of divergence and that the phenotypic differences show the result of both divergence and selective pressures.

      Yes, because subspecies (like I said above) can be used without any evolutionary significance. There can also be animals that have multiple subspecies with a much lower Fst than humans do in simpler organisms, such as small insects. Overall, it depends on the scientist, the context and the feedback of his peers but in general >.25 is the criterion used. The reason humans are not considered subspecies is because unlike some other organisms with lower Fst’s, humans had and have, extremely high gene flow. If you went back 50 generations, we would all be related to each other by a cousin. Low gene flow – a criteria for subspecies is far from applicable in this case.

      Yet in the context of humans and races, the point is that the argument that divergence alone isn’t enough to produce phenotypical differences between races, which it actually is. Yes, gene flow decreases the actual divergence, but what geneflow significance is to be the main point of refuting race’s significance is that the gene flow would trade traits with these others populations thus making them more similar.

      In terms of sociological significance, while isolation alone didn’t create racial differences in terms of relation, the mass geographical stagnation of gene pools under different environmental pressures in natural selection nonetheless resulted in phenotypic differences with meaning and association with genetic background.

      You should avoid using crude phenotypic definitions of race to support a “race” based in population genetics, it makes you come off like an inconsistent opportunist who uses crude 19th century evolutionary biology to push his political agenda.

      Modern forensics uses skulls to identify race; no political agenda there. Anthropologists can discern the race of a skeleton with strikingly high accuracy.

      I read the link and wasn’t impressed, and it’s not irrelevant. The reason traditional races are nonsense is because they are not reflective genetically. Their original purpose was to uncover homogenous populations within and heterogeneous in between. This criteria does not fit any of the 3 major races. You’d have to increase the amount to around 300, say we have one.

      See Greg Cochran: Clines and Races.

      There are five major races* and analysis does show this. Have you read Nicholas Wade’s A Troublesome Inheritance?

      It most definitely is relevant.

      Like

  9. Devin says:

    I should also mention for the above post, that’s not to say humans can’t have divisions made that though “arbitrary” have biological relevance. Like Haplogroups, or Clines. But the splitting up of the world into three “races” like Rushton does would only be biologically relevant in a fantasy land.

    Like

    • RaceRealist says:

      See above on clines, and I don’t believe in the three race breakdown; I like 5 better. If you’d like to discuss the triarchic theory of race, head on to PumpkinPerson’s blog. But I take to a five-race model with further subpopulations in them.

      Like

  10. Devin says:

    Funny enough, we have cases with the latter as remote of using Neanderthal DNA and Chimps as a proxy from Paleoafricans.

    What I do recommend you watch is Conc0dance’s video on the “Science of Race”. He actually does some experiments with the STRUCTURE program Rosenberg, Tang and Witherspoon used in their studies. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=teyvcs2S4mI. This deals with how “K” can drastically alter the outcome.

    Now I will address specifically what I think of the “big three” clustering studies:
    – All three of these studies suffer from small sample sizes. It should be noted that Rosenberg was critiqued for not using large enough sample sizes in the 2002 study. This was not taken into considering for the Tang study which used more or less the same sample size.
    – The most sophisticated of the three, the Witherspoon one more or less agrees with what I said. You can find genetic clusters of any geographically distinct group , this does not vindicate race. While if you use isolated populations over many 1000’s of loci ,individuals are usually closer to the population “mean” (which is an abstract) than another populations “mean”, even if they are more dissimilar compared to other individuals within their population; when subcontinental populations are used W goes up to .3, or a 30% chance of dissimilarity. This is precisely what Lewontin talked about, a 30% chance of misclassification based on genotype. Overall, Witherspoon rejected race while noting you can construct genetic clusters in any geographically distinct population.
    – An even more sophisticated study done by Li et al in 2008 more or less confirmed the exact apportionment of the less than 1% of human genetic variation that Lewontin claimed almost 30 years earlier. It was an analysis of 640,000 SNP’s and analyzed over 1000 individuals while working with the same assumptions about gradients and cutoffs within a cline that the Tang, Witherspoon and Rosenberg study use. This more or less refuted Edwards, by coming to the same proportions using many 1000’s of loci.
    – The fact that you can form genetic cluster around almost every linguistic group or geographically distinct population means the ones in the Tang study are not even close to the most basic subdivisons of the human race.
    – The STRUCTURE program makes assumption themselves which can be questioned, and other models exist with less “linear” results.

    I do not think there is any population that is a “nonadmixed” group and I think the study reflects the fact this was done in the early 2000’s. Gene flow being unbelievably high for humans when compared to other species is precisely the reason humans are not grouped into clearly demarcated subspecies like you can do with other animals with a higher Fst, like Chimpanzees. When you compare human Fst to other similar mammels, our Fst is quite low. Chimpanzees have 4x as much genetic distance between each continental group as humans, Wolves have an Fst of .65 etc.

    Like

    • RaceRealist says:

      Your points on the three studies refutes race by the generic 19th-century label by the mechanisms of their divergence. However, that doesn’t negate that these gene pools are diverged and related to each other to different extents as well as allowing for different mean phenotypes to exist with sociological significance.

      The point on clines, see Razib and Cochran.

      Your points on linguistic groups is pointless. A cluster alone with them doesn’t make race arbitrary because obviously linguistic groups, on average, would be expected to be part of a gene pool migration and this should be put in the context of their relation to other groups likely also having a close relation in linguistic roots.

      If anything this CONFIRMS Cartleton S. Coon-esque anthropology as they also believed in a network of association by ancient migration in languages and sub-racial groups.

      Overall, your last few comments confuses the contention of race by 19th century standards versus the “social construct” of race having biological meaning.

      Like

  11. John Doe says:

    What is the source for the genetic cluster analysis you used here in the main article, the one showing the Middle East clustered apart from Europe? I haven’t been able to find a source for it despite my efforts. Also, in your opinion, should the Middle East be considered White?

    Like

    • Phil78 says:

      On the middle east, I rather than the sources you ask, I would provide context on how these things work and migration histories understood by historians and geneticists.

      Regarding clustering, which groups clustering with who depends on the sample number from certain regions as well as which groups are used for each region. This does make association at times arbiti=rary, but as explained in old comments, only arbitrary when inconsistent.

      For instance, it depends on factors of say using Nigerians for “Africa”, French for “Europe”, and Chinese for “Asia”. Or you could be more specific and use Egyptians for North Africa, Yemeni for West Asia, Italians for Southern Europe and so on.

      So, in another scenario, one could make middle easterners and Europeans cluster.

      As for why they cluster apart, let me explain. Middle Easterners are made of two groups primarly, a caucasian geenpool at a 20k-30k split and a genepool of a 10k split.

      They share connections with Europeans particularly with the 10k split lineages in their genepool, but Europeans have additional ancestry from Eastern European and Caucasian Hunter gatherer DNA known as Aryans, the founders of the Indo european languages/

      People of the Caucasus and Iran have the most of it in the Middle East, so they have the closest affinity to Europeans which makes sense as even more of the groups prior to now once spoke Indo European languages.

      http://journals.plos.org/plosgenetics/article?id=10.1371/journal.pgen.1003316

      RR detailed this in the past.

      Like

  12. John Doe says:

    Thanks for the reply. I understand how clustering works, I was more or less asking because R.R. liked the 5 race categorization scheme, which includes Middle Easterners/West Asians as Whites/European. Personally, I think we should classify West Asians/ME as their own cluster since when we raise K they fallout of clustering together. I was wondering R.R. (or you, since you’re close together on your opinions) agreed or disagreed, and why so…

    Can I still get the source? As I would like to be able to cite where it is from and I have found no orginal source for the graph, which is starting to bug me as I like to cite my sources.

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Please keep comments on topic.

Charles Murray

Arthur Jensen

Blog Stats

  • 230,543 hits
Follow NotPoliticallyCorrect on WordPress.com

suggestions, praises, criticisms

If you have any suggestions for future posts, criticisms or praises for me, email me at RaceRealist88@gmail.com
%d bloggers like this: