Re: Social Engineering (was: Different patriarchy Model)

Gerold Firl (
18 Jan 1995 12:56:03 -0800

In article <> (Calvin Bruce Ostrum) writes:

>I presume you are saying that there are more members of the "black race"
>in prison than there are members of the "white race".

In the US blacks are over-represented in prison populations, if that's what
you mean.

>Now, I've
>noticed that in the past, you have maintained that "race" is a scientific
>category, based on something or other to do with genetics, and not a
>social category.

When "race" is used in a consistent, meaningful way, it is based on

>So either there is some kind of equivocation above, or you
>have access to some statistics that most of us lack, statistics about
>this "scientific" definition of race and how it relates to incarceration

You appear to be laboring under some misapprehensions. I'll try and
clarify. Most of this is either obvious or has been recently discussed in
this newsgroup, so I suppose your question is largely rhetorical, but I'll
play it straight anyway.

First of all, there is no "black race". Africa alone has 5 indigenous
races, members of which would be called "black" in the US, but which are at
least as genetically distinct from each other as caucasians and east
asians. American blacks are largely descended from negro peoples, with some
nilito-sudanese component. But this is largely a discussion of culture
rather than race. The US has a number of afro-american subcultures,
so-called because most of their adherants are afro-american, or black.
Individuals which grow-up in these subcultures develop in such a way as to
make it more likely that they will be incarcerated. On a per-capita basis,
blacks commit more crimes than any other american racial subgroup. (I
haven't seen income-adjusted inter-racial comparisons of crime rates;
anyone with data?) This disparity appears to have *increased* since the
60's, when full civil rights were granted to all citizens, which I find to
be an interesting and important fact. I was hoping to discuss the how and
why of this anomolous result from the standpoint of cultural evolution,
rather than getting bogged-down in accusations of racism etc. This kind of
static makes it difficult to discuss the problem of race in america. You
seem to feel that you are waging some kind of noble battle against racism
when you raise spurious issues such as this; in the end you merely preserve
the status quo by stifling open discussion.

Disclaimer claims dat de claims claimed in dis are de claims of meself,
me, and me alone, so sue us god. I won't tell Bill & Dave if you won't.
=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=---- Gerold Firl @ ..hplabs!hp-sdd!geroldf