Re: Homo Sapiens needs to be classified in sub species.

Gerold Firl (
7 Sep 1995 13:28:10 -0700

In article <428o9d$> (Allan Dunn) writes:

> I wonder why it would be useful at all? If anyone has insight on
>this I would like to know.

To me, the most useful information which could be gained by a thorough
understanding of human races (where race is synonomous with biological
subspecies) is the resulting insight into our evolutionary past. The
current pattern of human races (muddied as it is by massive mixing) is a
map of both gene flow and the movement of peoples. In trying to piece
together our history, this is vital data.

It's good that people have a social conscience, and are concerned about the
possible misuse of knowledge. But I think that attempting to claim that
race among humans is purely a social fiction is an absurd over-reaction.
Anyone with any knowledge of evolutionary biology can clearly see that
there are human subspecies. Attempting to enforce an ideological gag-order
on such people is orwellian doublethink. On the other hand, telling
xenophobic racists that their mania has no scientific basis is equally
futile; anyone who uses race as a primary classification tool for their
interactions with other individuals will not be concerned about getting
their science straight.

I suppose this ideological campaign is really aimed at the people in the
middle, those who don't have enough evolutionary biology to understand what
a subspecies is, and who are not mired in an ideology which depends on
racist notions of superiority/inferiority. But however noble your goal may
be, using disinformation to sway the debate will be counterproductive in
the long run. Race does exist, but that doesn't mean we have to be racist.
The sooner we can drain the emotional rancor from ths debate, the sooner we
can get back to the more pleasant task of pursueing the science of man.

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