[ExI] it's your choice

Keith Henson hkeithhenson at gmail.com
Sat Apr 4 19:23:08 UTC 2020

 On Sat, Apr 4, 2020 at 7:58 AM David McFadzean <davidmc at gmail.com> wrote:
> Keith Henson via extropy-chat
> >> But most of us have ancestors from all over.
> > If you intend "us* to mean humans, I doubt it.  The vast majority of
> > Chinese are not of mixed origin.  Neither are most of the Europeans.
> You may be surprised to learn that the identical ancestors point is only 5000-15000 years ago.

Good point but the selection events leading to the present economic
divergence and races are not that far back, perhaps 1000 years for the
UK and 2-3000 for China.

Though it is not much discussed, there must have been considerable
psychological selection when farming was developed starting around
12,000 years ago.  The difference in psychological traits between
farmers and hunter-gathers is considerable.

It's really interesting that the Chinese can be sorted by observation
into those with ancestors who grew rice and those who grew wheat.


> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Identical_ancestors_point
> On Fri, Apr 3, 2020 at 10:59 PM Keith Henson via extropy-chat <extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org> wrote:
>> <spike at rainier66.com> wrote:
>> > Keith, sensa huma, me lad.
>> Some of this stuff is *not* funny.
>> > We know how race is used in our modern world,
>> but at some point we must recognize that we moderns are in a rather absurd
>> situation where gender is a choice but race is not.
>> Gender reassignment (Christine Jorgensen) has been a reality since I
>> was ten years old.  As you point out, it does not change whatever sex
>> chromosomes a person has.
>> > Clearly everyone is a mixture of races.
>> Only if you completely ignore the definition of the word.
>> "A race is a grouping of humans based on shared physical or social
>> qualities into categories generally viewed as distinct by society."
>> (Wikipedia)
>> Races came about from the common selection of a group over a long
>> enough time for certain patterns of genes to become common.  In some
>> cases, the groups have existed for 200,000 years or more.
>> And everyone is *not* a mix of present-day races.
>> > That one really is ambiguous.  A few of us (perhaps a
>> tenth of a percent) are genetically ambiguous gender (trisomy or ring
>> chromosome 13) but for everyone else, it is either XX or XY.
>> You left out 47,XXX, 47,XXY, 47,XYY and 48,XXYY plus some other rare cases.
>> > But most of us have ancestors from all over.
>> If you intend "us* to mean humans, I doubt it.  The vast majority of
>> Chinese are not of mixed origin.  Neither are most of the Europeans.
>> That's is a US pattern and more generally places the Europeans
>> (particularly the northwest Europeans) colonized.  You might note that
>> the Europeans did not do well in the tropics.  They were selected for
>> other characteristics than parasite resistance.
>> > If you do just the 60 dollar
>> DNA test, you can see that, and if you have a friend interested in this
>> sorta thing, you can find out all kindsa cool stuff, including. most of us
>> are a mixture of what we are now calling races, which are multiplying daily
>> it seems.
>> 23andMe claims that I am 100% whitebread.  Big deal.  I clearly lack
>> the genes to accumulate wealth.
>> > So now we are in a society where men can compete in womens' sports, where gender is a choice but one cannot change by choice from one's assigned race?  Indeed?  Of course we can.  Anything represented anywhere in our DNA is among our choices.  I know of no rule that specifies we are always stuck
>> with the majority race found in our DNA, and know examples where
>> people have been assigned against their will to a trace of their DNA
>> content.
>> You cannot change your parents, grandparents, great grandparents, etc.
>> Where you came from is significant because in some places (northwest
>> Europe, China, Japan) there has been substantial selection for the
>> characteristics that made them able to host the industrial revolution
>> and (for a while) dominate the world.  Read Clark for the evidence
>> that our UK ancestors were under intense selection for at least 400
>> years.
>> Clark points out that the selection pressures were really odd in the
>> UK.  The "stable agrarian society" selected for a very different set
>> of characteristics from places where parasite resistance was more
>> important than literacy or impulse control.
>> I was amazed to find that about 6000 genes (out of 20,000) are thought
>> to be involved in RNA or DNA virus resistance.  Tropical parasite
>> resistance might involve even more genes.
>> > Are we really now in a place where gender is a choice but race is not?
>> DNA gender is not a choice, neither are your parents or your genetic
>> selection history.
>> > I recommend that people do one of those DNA tests.
>> They certainly do lead to some strange places.  For example, I am
>> related to one Donald Funcannon through Nancy (born 1796), a sister of
>> John Henson, my ggg grandfather.  Her life was interesting enough to
>> have left tracks, including mixed-race children.  I should put more
>> effort into finding some of the papers and perhaps more of her
>> descendants.
>> I think you mentioned your mixed-race ancestry was 5 generations back.
>> I am more Neanderthal (different species!) than you are mixed from
>> that event.  It would be silly, but I could claim to be Neanderthal to
>> the same extent you are (fallaciously?) are claiming to be African.
>> Keith
>> PS.  If you project into the future far enough, then forget minor
>> stuff like changing gender.  Changing species will be an option.
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