Sta Hungry Stay Foolish

Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.

A blog by Leon Oudejans

The out-of-Africa and racial diversity conundrum

Late 2002, Professor Marcus W. Feldman of the Stanford School of Humanities and Sciences published a revolutionary finding in Science Magazine: compare any two people around the world and you will find a DNA sequence that is about 99.9% identical (eg, ScienceStanford press release, Telegraph).

The study also revealed another remarkable fact about the 0.1% DNA difference. Contrary to what you would intuitively expect, this 0.1% difference is mainly (ie, 94%) among individuals of the same populations. Differences between countries are far less. (Stanford)

From a logical point of view, racial diversity seems to make no sense at all given this DNA outcome. A 2008 interview in Harvard Magazine with Duana Fullwiley confirms this. Interview excerpts: “I am an African American but in parts of Africa, I am white. I take a plane to France, a seven- to eight-hour ride. My race changes as I cross the Atlantic. There, I say, ‘Je suis noire,’ and they say, ‘Oh, okay—métisse—you are mixed.’ Then I fly another six to seven hours to Senegal, and I am white. In the space of a day, I can change from African American, to métisse, to tubaab.” Tubaab means European or white in the regional Wolof language.

When you believe in racial diversity, the “Out of Africa” theory makes little sense. When you believe in 99.9% identical DNA amongst all races, the “Out of Africa” theory makes perfect sense. Harvard Magazine: “Is race, then, purely a social construct? The fact that racial categories change from one society to another might suggest it is”.

The concept of racial diversity did not die after this revolutionary finding. To the contrary probably. Today the 0.1% DNA difference is used in the very same way as physical appearances were once used to underline racial diversity. Duana Fullwiley: “to build—to literally construct—certain ideas about why race matters.” Note: italic marking by DF.

In my 26 February 2015 blog, I mentioned that the Dutch and French speaking part of Belgium are always quarreling about anything. The only party that can unite both fractions into Belgians is criticism from the Netherlands. I think, feel and believe that the same applies to racial diversity. In my 4 July 2016 blog, I predicted that CRISPR-Cas9, humanoids and transhumanism will be able to create a new us and them: humans against artificial humans.

Since 2010 scientists have known that people of Eurasian origin have inherited anywhere from 1 to 4 percent of their DNA from the Neanderthal (Phys). East Asians on average carry 15% to 30% more Neanderthal DNA than Europeans (IBT). At least 20% of the Neanderthal genome may lurk within modern humans, influencing the skin, hair and diseases people have today (LiveScience). Indigenous sub-Saharan Africans have no Neanderthal DNA because their ancestors did not migrate through Eurasia (source).

In 2008, a formerly unknown human species was discovered in a Siberian cave: the Denisovan. DNA from their fossils suggests they shared an origin with Neanderthals but were nearly as genetically distinct from Neanderthals as Neanderthals were from modern humans (LiveScience).

What exactly defines my identity: my “African” ancestry, my white colour, my mixed DNA?? 

Doobie Brothers – What a fool believes (1979) – artists, lyrics, video, Wiki-1, Wiki-2

But what a fool believes he sees

No wise man has the power to reason away

What seems to be

Is always better than nothing

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