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Define White

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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Does anyone else struggle to follow barkmoss' thought process?

    I think he's trying to say that races do exist, black people are inferior and that white people are discriminated against. However, he can't just come out and say it, because we'll then know he's a dodgy old loon. So he tries to hide it and comes across as a dodgy old loon anyway.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    ShyBoy wrote: »
    Though as I said, I'd already answered definitively the thread, saying Dr. Leroi at Imperial College London has expanded on the research of others showing that genetic correlations can be used to define different races, from 5 major groups (Europe, America, Africa, East Asia and Australasia) right down to different parts of the same country. heh :p


    There are genetic differences between people from different areas. However, this is not the same as "race". "Race" is socially constructed. What this means is that the meanings and identities people attach to outward visible differences between peoples are determinded by culture, politics, society etc and are tightly bound up with the history of imperialism, slavery etc.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    For Budda's attention :) : You say …

    all racial theory is total rubbish…I think the whole concept of race is totally stupid. How many races are there? And where do you draw the lines inbetween…there are some many little differences, so many little sub groups that its impossible for it to be a proper scientific grouping, too many people are a mix and therefore dont fit easily into one group or another. For it to be scientific you need to have set definite standards which with 'race' you cant…

    Any taxonomy is ultimately a convenient but artificial way to parcel up the constantly evolving continuum of the genes of all life. Carl Linnaeus is responsible for the way we organise nature's variety into classification groups, the 1758 edition of his System Naturae is the source of the system universally used, known as the Linnaean Hierarchy. In this Bible of taxonomy, Linnaeus himself classified Homo sapiens into four subspecies: europaeus, afer, asiaticus, and americanus. Was Linnaeus wrong not to treat his own species as exempt from the normal processes of evolution and classification? Generally only a subset of the religious right will answer yes!

    So Linnaeus is our rightful guide today - but recognising man's subspecies far predates the Enlightenment: Ancient Egyptian, Jewish, Christian and Islamic sources record what we would consider acknowledgment and discussion of racial differences. (And at the least complex level of civilisation, many tribal human groups have a name for their ingroup which means 'men', meaning further, that only we are men, while outsiders are named with a collective derogatory, or not named at all - are simply not-men.)

    Contemporary confirmation of the validity of historic racial orthodoxy and Linnaeus's subspecies classifications comes from the new science of population-genetics, including the study by Neil Risch et al. at Stanford which showed that the supposed 'social construct' of the major races is in fact an accurate recognition of pre-existing genetically distinctive groups.

    I'll mention two great heroes of the "race does not exist" hoax. ShyBoy has already covered the exposure of "Lewontin's fallacy" by Edwards – but it's worse even than Edwards realised. Henry Harpending has shown that Lewontin's 15% figure for genetic difference between population groups was way too low (about half the correct total) even as the conclusions he drew from them were spurious. The other star propagandiser in the modern era for race denial is Jared Diamond. He proposes that if we were to look for geographically variable traits such as anti-malarial and lactose tolerance genes we could create alternative racial groupings which might place Swedes with the west African Fulani - and thus does he claim to disprove race. Yet a race – to both honest scientists and the man in the street(!) is a distinguishable geographic population of shared lineage – that's all a race is, and all anyone ever claimed a race is - so races undeniably exist, and people around the world who share genes for milk-drinking are not.

    Surely it's those who reject Linnaeus's system; the evidence of anthropology and genetics; the evidence of their own eyes; and the notion of simply being honest – exclusively, it seems, about human races – who are engaging in pseudo-science for political reasons?

    Articles like Leroi's and this one by Marek Cohn are evidence that the political control of the debate is shifting, from those who have denied race for dubious and unscientific reasons to those who cannot or will not sustain the omerta in the face of incontrovertible genetic evidence - with good reason I think. Edwards is quoted in the article: 'it is a dangerous mistake to premise the moral equality of human beings on biological similarity because dissimilarity, once revealed, then becomes an argument for moral inequality'.

    This is a better explanation of the science than I could give. http://www.goodrumj.com/RFaqHTML.html
    And if you can get this book, it's very useful too. http://www.physicsforums.com/archive/index.php/t-38847.html
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    This thread's going well then :D
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    BLAGSTA - The 'social construct' claim cannot sustain when the genetic groupings blindly identified from DNA, clearly and incontrovertibly precede any socially constructed notions by tens of thousands of years and yet match them 99+% of the time. (Risch and Tang)

    It begins to seem like a lie.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    XXXX wrote: »
    BLAGSTA - The 'social construct' claim cannot sustain when the genetic groupings blindly identified from DNA, clearly and incontrovertibly precede any socially constructed notions by tens of thousands of years and yet match them 99+% of the time. (Risch and Tang)

    It begins to seem like a lie.

    You didn't read my post properly did you?

    I'm not saying that genetic differences don't exist. What I am saying, is that what we commonly think of as "race" is a social construct. The concept of race has been around a lot longer than the concept of genes and DNA. What we mean by "race" is not the same as differences in DNA.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    XXXX wrote: »
    (And at the least complex level of civilisation, many tribal human groups have a name for their ingroup which means 'men', meaning further, that only we are men, while outsiders are named with a collective derogatory, or not named at all - are simply not-men.)
    An interesting modern variant on this is BBC Manchester’s radio show for the Black community which is named 'The People' – a very tribal use of the definite article! There is, of course, no similar platform for Manchester’s (or England's) majority people to discuss their group interests and concerns – any desire we may have for community and identity is only officially recognised when at the all-inclusive British level, which includes all the minorities and is influenced at all levels and in every institution by their particularist claims – by such omission do we become non-men.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    XXXX wrote: »
    An interesting modern variant on this is BBC Manchester’s radio show for the Black community which is named 'The People' – a very tribal use of the definite article! There is, of course, no similar platform for Manchester’s (or England's) majority people to discuss their group interests and concerns – any desire we may have for community and identity is only officially recognised when at the all-inclusive British level, which includes all the minorities and is influenced at all levels and in every institution by their particularist claims – by such omission do we become non-men.

    You're quite paranoid aren't you?
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Race is not 'socially constructed'. Race is not differences between populations - it is, as the various Wikipedia definitions from different biological approaches broadly phrase it: a distinguishable geographic population of shared lineage (it's a little different for each).

    Who do you have in mind when you say that's not what they mean by race? You offer that definition to 100 people and I wouldn't be surprised if 100 agreed.

    ~Minus those who start spluttering 'social construct...social const....'
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    XXXX wrote: »
    Race is not 'socially constructed'. Race is not differences between populations - it is, as the various Wikipedia definitions from different biological approaches broadly phrase it: a distinguishable geographic population of shared lineage (it's a little different for each).

    Who do you have in mind when you say that's not what they mean by race? You offer that definition to 100 people and I wouldn't be surprised if 100 agreed.

    ~Minus those who start spluttering 'social construct...social const....'

    You haven't understood what I've written.

    When people talk about race, they are not talking about differences in DNA. People can't see differences in DNA. What people can see is visible differences. People then attach social, political, cultural and historical meanings to these visible differences. That is what's meant by race is socially constructed.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Blagsta wrote: »
    There are genetic differences between people from different areas. However, this is not the same as "race". "Race" is socially constructed. What this means is that the meanings and identities people attach to outward visible differences between peoples are determinded by culture, politics, society etc and are tightly bound up with the history of imperialism, slavery etc.

    You're slabbering pish.

    Race means any kind of sub-species - human, animal or plant - which has become differentiated from the rest of the species by isolation in a peculiar environment, and through endogymy, natural and/or artificial selection has ended up breeding true.

    An example of this can be seen in dogs. By your definition, the difference in looks and behaviour between a Poodle and a Doberman is socially-constructed!

    A modern-day Lysenko indeed.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Spliffie wrote: »
    You're slabbering pish.

    Race means any kind of sub-species - human, animal or plant - which has become differentiated from the rest of the species by isolation in a peculiar environment, and through endogymy, natural and/or artificial selection has ended up breeding true.

    An example of this can be seen in dogs. By your definition, the difference in looks and behaviour between a Poodle and a Doberman is socially-constructed!

    A modern-day Lysenko indeed.

    You haven't understood my post either. It's quite a subtle point, so I'm not surprised you can't get your head around it.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Blagsta wrote: »
    You haven't understood what I've written.

    When people talk about race, they are not talking about differences in DNA. People can't see differences in DNA. What people can see is visible differences. People then attach social, political, cultural and historical meanings to these visible differences. That is what's meant by race is socially constructed.
    That's not what 'race' is to a scientist. Race is not a social construct - it's a biological reality. I would agree that some of the social, cultural, political, and historical, attitudes, feelings, and dialogues about race are unscientific - and some are scientific. But that has not been the meaning or context of the 'race is a social construct' mantra for the last 40 years - that phrase, so often used, has been meant to imply or demand that we see racial categories as having no scientific validity. I suspect you know that full well.

    I'm pasting in my next post: you'll see more common ground than perhaps you expected.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    ShyBoy wrote:
    I would say asking Dr. Leroi what the 'white' race is, he'd be able to give us a much better and specific answer based on our genes and biological make up rather than religion and social contexts.
    As I said ShyBoy, to talk about the ‘White race’ is to use a political label. Don't you agree? It's a political question - who is White, and the answer has changed through time. The US government considers all of the ethnic groups originating in the Middle and Near East and North Africa to be White. I think that almost all Brits would disagree – and so would most people in those parts of Africa and Asia.

    Leroi could look at Nelson Mandela’s DNA, and will know that he isn’t White – because he knows that the markers he'll find cannot belong to a White man as the term is understood. But he won’t be able to tell you whether Anwar Sadat's DNA belongs to a White man unless you tell him whether he's working to US gummint guidelines or British man-in-street-opinion.

    Naturally, what is true for 'White' is true for other labels based on lineage such as Black, Jew, Arab, Mongoloid, Negroid, Caucasoid (of whom Whites are merely part) etc. All have blurred edges, clines within and out, and geneticists and demographers don’t need to investigate every individual – it's the clusters which matter. I think that mirrors the way ethnic groups form and perpetuate – it's the collective identity in all its facets: genetic (more often simply thought of as shared descent/family), cultural, historic, and territorial, to which people give their loyalty – when they do. It's never knowingly about similarities in DNA - and it’s difficult to think a political regime is anywhere imminent that would change that. Your question is moot.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Blagsta wrote: »
    You haven't understood my post either. It's quite a subtle point, so I'm not surprised you can't get your head around it.

    Don't flatter yourself Blagsta. Your point is a strawman. You're defining race as others falsely see it, rather than defining it as scientifically established.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I must agree that Blagsta's constant resort to theorising about other posters' psychology or motivation is rather demeaning for all concerned. This is a thread about the meaning of a word and it's conceptual background - I see no call for anything personal.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    JimV wrote:
    Just to clarify - you believe white people are now oppressed and that the holocaust is equatable with affirmative action?

    To clarify even further - you believe the nazis blaming a minority (the jews) for problems in the treatment of other Germans is the same thing as black community groups challenging racism and workplace discrimination?
    I suspect you didn't read or understand the article. It's about the politicisation of resentments caused by natural inequities, and the abuse of government power to expropriate resources and opportunities from individuals, merely on account of their race, and allocate them to others, again, according to race. What happens when you unleash that tiger, and how do you control it?

    The article does not focus on ‘Black groups challenging racism and workplace discrimination’, it does however challenge racism, it’s sad but unsurprising that you did not notice that.

    My position on Affirmative Action/Positive Discrimination and its goal of proportional representation is that if it is instituted at all, it should be made a formal target in every single institution and area of economic and public life, and should be completely accomplished at the leadership and management level of government (all levels), corporate boardrooms, the Foundations, quangos, the equality commissars, media, and the academy (in other words the powerful, those who have benefited from any prevailing injustices, those self-interestedly pushing it), before it is imposed at the level of students and entry level employees (in other words the powerless who have no responsibility for any prevailing injustices, yet become victims of injustice on account of their race as the system presently operates). I think it’s also necessary in principle - if we accept the validity of AA/PD/PR at all, to allow for the institutionalised racialisation of majority interests, as we presently allow, indeed encourage, for minorities. None of this is what I desire, but it would at least be fair.
    You're also linking to websites asking question such as 'whose view of reality is most distorted? Old female hippies or blacks?' 'Black atheists most likely to cheat on taxes' 'IQ rises with lighter skin for blacks' - ultimately one of those websites that presents repeatedly negative views of non-'white' groupings, but seems to avoid any stats at all that reflect negatively on a 'white' grouping. It may be the nature of where you've drawn your sources is questionable - but be aware of the rules you agreed to when signing up here when making further posts.
    You're wrong. As the subtitle says – the blog is a presentation of data, not doctrine – could you try to meet the same ideal?

    Here are a few blogs by the Inductivist which present negative views of White groups, or positive views on other groups, or a bit of both.

    http://inductivist.blogspot.com/2006/10/europeans-are-gender-stupid-world.html
    http://inductivist.blogspot.com/2006/04/alert-to-women-married-to-russian-they.html
    http://inductivist.blogspot.com/2006/04/swedes-race-of-drunkards-everybody.html
    http://inductivist.blogspot.com/2006/04/mexicans-come-in-dead-last-in.html
    http://inductivist.blogspot.com/2006/04/best-and-worst-immigrants-part-ii-okay.html
    http://inductivist.blogspot.com/2006/05/by-landslide-blacks-think-they-are.html

    As you can see, I got most of those from one page of one month's blog – there's more if you want 'em! Perhaps you should withdraw your unfounded claim and apologise?
    JimV wrote:
    The common usage is the same as ever for racist as far as I'm aware - it is the use of persons race to stereotype them, and to discriminate against them.
    Can you explain why you wrote Black community groups without feeling the need for scare quotes, but for White groups, you write: non-'white' groupings, and a 'white' grouping? You also asserted that those who identify as Whites only want to exclude themselves from others” while arguing for the legitimacy of Black identity-politics. Perhaps it is you, Jim, who should consider the rules proscribing racism before making further posts?
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    :wave:

    I hadn't noticed that you are a moderator JimV. I don't know whether the knowledge would have made me less challenging or more so. It certainly makes your dubious attitudes more of a concern - is this a Black Power forum?
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    XXXX wrote: »
    That's not what 'race' is to a scientist.

    Which scientists? Do all scientists talk about race? Is there scientific consensus as to what race means?
    XXXX wrote: »
    Race is not a social construct - it's a biological reality.

    You still seem unable to grasp the point. The term "race" is concerned with the meanings we attach to outward differences between peoples. Its is not about differences between people's DNA.
    XXXX wrote: »
    I would agree that some of the social, cultural, political, and historical, attitudes, feelings, and dialogues about race are unscientific - and some are scientific. But that has not been the meaning or context of the 'race is a social construct' mantra for the last 40 years - that phrase, so often used, has been meant to imply or demand that we see racial categories as having no scientific validity. I suspect you know that full well.

    I've just explained what "race as a social construct" means. You appear unable (or unwilling) to grasp the point.
    XXXX wrote: »
    I'm pasting in my next post: you'll see more common ground than perhaps you expected.

    We shall see.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Spliffie wrote: »
    Don't flatter yourself Blagsta. Your point is a strawman. You're defining race as others falsely see it, rather than defining it as scientifically established.

    You're still missing the point. You could do with looking into the historical meanings of the term race. You're also assuming that there is scientific consensus as to what race means. There isn't.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    XXXX wrote: »
    It's about the politicisation of resentments caused by natural inequities,


    Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    XXXX wrote: »
    As I said ShyBoy, to talk about the ?White race? is to use a political label. Don't you agree? It's a political question - who is White, and the answer has changed through time. The US government considers all of the ethnic groups originating in the Middle and Near East and North Africa to be White. I think that almost all Brits would disagree ? and so would most people in those parts of Africa and Asia.

    Leroi could look at Nelson Mandela?s DNA, and will know that he isn?t White ? because he knows that the markers he'll find cannot belong to a White man as the term is understood. But he won?t be able to tell you whether Anwar Sadat's DNA belongs to a White man unless you tell him whether he's working to US gummint guidelines or British man-in-street-opinion.

    Naturally, what is true for 'White' is true for other labels based on lineage such as Black, Jew, Arab, Mongoloid, Negroid, Caucasoid (of whom Whites are merely part) etc. All have blurred edges, clines within and out, and geneticists and demographers don?t need to investigate every individual ? it's the clusters which matter. I think that mirrors the way ethnic groups form and perpetuate ? it's the collective identity in all its facets: genetic (more often simply thought of as shared descent/family), cultural, historic, and territorial, to which people give their loyalty ? when they do. It's never knowingly about similarities in DNA - and it?s difficult to think a political regime is anywhere imminent that would change that. Your question is moot.

    You seem rather confused. You're arguing here that race is a social construct ("to talk about the ?White race? is to use a political label"). However, you are then arguing that people form identities around genetics (shared descent). I would argue that actually, people form identities based on who is around them when they grow up and shared interests (political, economic and cultural). Identity has very little to do with genetics. Genetically I am mixed Celtic/Angle/Saxon. My identity has nothing to do with that. My identity is based on my experiences of life. I have more in common with some black people I know than I do with some Irish people I know.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Historical research has shown that the idea of "race" has always carried more meanings than mere physical differences; indeed, physical variations in the human species have no meaning except the social ones that humans put on them. Today scholars in many fields argue that "race" as it is understood in the United States of America was a social mechanism invented during the 18th century to refer to those populations brought together in colonial America: the English and other European settlers, the conquered Indian peoples, and those peoples of Africa brought in to provide slave labor.

    From its inception, this modern concept of "race" was modeled after an ancient theorem of the Great Chain of Being, which posited natural categories on a hierarchy established by God or nature. Thus "race" was a mode of classification linked specifically to peoples in the colonial situation. It subsumed a growing ideology of inequality devised to rationalize European attitudes and treatment of the conquered and enslaved peoples. Proponents of slavery in particular during the 19th century used "race" to justify the retention of slavery. The ideology magnified the differences among Europeans, Africans, and Indians, established a rigid hierarchy of socially exclusive categories underscored and bolstered unequal rank and status differences, and provided the rationalization that the inequality was natural or God-given. The different physical traits of African-Americans and Indians became markers or symbols of their status differences.
    http://www.aaanet.org/stmts/racepp.htm
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Blagsta wrote: »
    You're still missing the point. You could do with looking into the historical meanings of the term race. You're also assuming that there is scientific consensus as to what race means. There isn't.

    Your premise is that the differences people perceive between races are socially determined rather than genetic, and then you conclude that race is therefore "socially-constructed". This is your point, yes?

    My point, which you certainly are missing, is that race in its most basic, established meaning - that of 'breed' and 'stock', undeniable to any biologist or animal-breeder, has got sweet FA to do with "social construction" or any other marxist gobbledegook. That much IS established - although the extent to which behaviour etc is determined by genetics is a source of contention.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    XXXX wrote: »
    :wave:

    I hadn't noticed that you are a moderator JimV. I don't know whether the knowledge would have made me less challenging or more so. It certainly makes your dubious attitudes more of a concern - is this a Black Power forum?
    And surprise surprise, the true nature of this poster starts to emerge.

    Well we certainly did not see this coming did we? :D
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Blagsta wrote: »


    Hardly an unbiased source, considering the AAA is rabidly left-wing.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Spliffie wrote: »
    Your premise is that the differences people perceive between races are socially determined rather than genetic, and then you conclude that race is therefore "socially-constructed". This is your point, yes?

    My point, which you certainly are missing, is that race in its most basic, established meaning - that of 'breed' and 'stock', undeniable to any biologist or animal-breeder, has got sweet FA to do with "social construction" or any other marxist gobbledegook. That much IS established - although the extent to which behaviour etc is determined by genetics is a source of contention.

    Spliffie makes a good point. Although, Blagsta provides the counter argument in the link: http://www.aaanet.org/stmts/racepp.htm

    What it seems to come down to is that our forefathers noticed race because it was real and attached significance to it, because it was significant. However, over time what changed was not our beliefs on race, but rather our beliefs on morality; we decided that slavery of any people was wrong and so much so that we would go to great lengths to end it/prevent it. White Christian Europe, Canada, Australia, South Africa, New Zealand and America decided that slavery sucked. So, WE FREED THE SLAVES, BECAUSE WE ROCK!
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Blagsta wrote: »

    Blagsta, in my post Dr. Leroi did say that whilst race previously had broadly been regarded as a purely social construct based on physical appearance that now there is real evidence that biological differences exist.

    This doesn't mean racism doesn't exist or the social issues don't exist, but it does mean that race isn't just an invented term for the purpose or prejudice etc.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Spliffie wrote: »
    Don't flatter yourself Blagsta. Your point is a strawman. You're defining race as others falsely see it, rather than defining it as scientifically established.

    if there was a scientific thing for 'race' it'd be pointless as the variation of any given race would overlap almost entirely with other 'races' thus negating the point of the label

    its a social contruct
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    The terms white and black and asian among others are social constructs.

    Caucasoid, mongoloid, negroid etc etc are not.

    There's a difference between social attitudes towards race and the biological aspect of it all.
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