[extropy-chat] Rights and Moral Indignation

BillK pharos at gmail.com
Thu Dec 14 09:36:27 UTC 2006

On 12/14/06, The Avantguardian wrote:
> Open your eyes, Russell. Race is a non-sensical
> socio-political construct of the state to keep its
> people at constant odds with one another -- divided
> and subjugated. Biologically there is more genetic
> diversity WITHIN races than there are BETWEEN races.
> Does it shock you that you could be more closely
> genetically related to some blacks than you are to
> most other whites? Culture (i.e. social software)
> however is a different matter entirely.

No comment on your argument, but I think recent discoveries show that
statement to be incorrect.
Humans are much more different than previously thought.

The article was published in The Independent (Science and Technology)
last month, but has moved to subscription only now.

Another copy is here:


Wednesday, November 22, 2006
Genetic breakthrough that reveals the differences between humans

Scientists hail genetic discovery that will change human understanding
By Steve Connor, Science Editor
Published: 23 November 2006

Scientists have discovered a dramatic
variation in the genetic make-up of humans
that could lead to a fundamental reappraisal
of what causes incurable diseases and could
provide a greater understanding of mankind.

The discovery has astonished scientists
studying the human genome - the genetic
recipe of man. Until now it was believed the
variation between people was due largely to
differences in the sequences of the
individual "letters" of the genome.

It now appears much of the variation is
explained instead by people having multiple
copies of some key genes that make up the
human genome.

The key questions answered

What have scientists discovered today?

They have found that each of us is more
different genetically than we previously
believed. Instead of being 99.9 per cent
identical, it may turn out to be more like 99
per cent identical - enough of a difference
to explain many variations in human traits.
Instead of having just two copies of every
gene - one from each parent - we have some
genes that are multiplied several times.
Furthermore these "multiple copy numbers"
differ from one person to another, which
could explain human physical and even mental

Are there any other practical applications?

The scientists looked at people from three
broad racial groups - African, Asian and
European. Although there was an underlying
similarity in terms of how common it was for
genes to be copied, there were enough racial
differences to assign every person bar one to
their correct ethnic origin. This might help
forensic scientists wishing to know more
about the race of a suspect.



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