Re: What Are the Race Deniers Denying?

Paul Gallagher (
26 Oct 1996 17:13:10 -0400

In <54rrj0$> () writes:

> We are all the same, one species Homo sapiens: thinking man
>>(although it is evident that some do less than others).

>But again: the issue is subspecies, not species. Is Gerald really the only
>person around here who will attempt to answer the actual question I asked?

Subspecies, or races, in biology are defined as natural populations within
a species that differ genetically and that are partially isolated from
each other reproductively because of their different geographic ranges.

The tendency in modern systematics is to reject the recognition of
subspecies altogether for all species, because the definition of
subspecies is arbitrary and "subspecies," however they are defined,
have only a transitory existence as separate entities.

If you want to find out more about the subspecies problem, try posting
a question in

If you're particularty interested in human variation, try a book like
R.C. Lewontin's Human Variation, which shows that the variation within
human subgroups is much greater than that among the subgroups. That is,
the average genetic difference between any two human subpopulations is
less than the average difference between two members of the same

Linnaeus thought that various human subpopulations, including some
that are now known to be mythical, were different species.

Nowadays, most people accept the biological species concept, in which
species are defined by their ability to interbreed. In this respect,
humans are clearly one species, since there is gene flow throughout the
whole human population.

I imagine that even if you were trying to prove that certain human
subgroups differed from each other in significant ways, you'd have to
concede that they can still breed with each other. In fact, "race
biologists" worry about that: superior types of humans will breed with
inferior types, or with types that they consider non-human. When
race scientists worry that whites will breed with other races, they
are implicitly affirming that these groups are not biological races,
since they are able to breed freely with each other and produce viable