Re: Does DNA prove that Jews are a race? #dna
A few more comments on this important topic, if I may.toggle quoted messageShow quoted text
Genetic Determinism and Social Darwinism were popular concepts among National Socialists in Germany and elsewhere, including the United States. One result of this perverse thinking was the genocide of European Jewry. The concept that human intelligence is primarily a product of genetic determination should be dismissed whole cloth, especially by Jews, who should know better.
This is not intended to diminish Jewish pride in the slightest, which is legitimate and deserved, but only to highlight the fine line between ethnic pride and invidious discrimination, propelled by supremacists of any ilk.
The brain is not like the nose or the legs. It is a 'plastic' organ capable of being molded by environmental and cultural factors. What we think of today as the Ashkenazic identity is both genetic and cultural in origin, the product of genetic isolation (i.e., endogamy), and of a cultural/intellectual evolution defined by many centuries of life in exile and persecution.
I believe the root causes of the exile, isolation, and persecution are ethnically based and go back to the socio-political history of certain Semitic tribes in the Near East, pre-dating even the formation of the Hebrew People. Genetic differences are I believe the underlying cause for the exile and persecution of Ashkenazim, which in turns has driven the development of certain cultural and intellectual features, adaptive to survival in this harsh environment, and magnified by genetic isolation. Having these demonstrable genetic and cultural characteristics makes it reasonable and, in a society which is governed by identity politics, necessary to consider Ashkenazim as a distinct ethnic group, having Semitic origins. Much as one might say Jamaican is a distinct ethnic group having West African (Bantu?) origins.
I prefer the use of the term ethnicity to race because ethnicity includes a cultural component with mere race does not. Categories such as white, black, asian, hispanic, semitic, etc., are meaninglessly reductionist and over-inclusive. In the future, perhaps only a sci-fi future, multi-cultural societies will I hope define their constituents in terms of genetic admixture and haplogroup rather than by these monolithic misnomers.
Richard Dawkins, a biologist raised in the Church of England, now an avowed atheist (cf. his book "The God Delusion"), is also known for his use of the term 'meme' which refers to cultural evolution, rather than genetic evolution. Stephen Jay Gould, a Jewish biologist, wrote a book called the Mismeasure of Man (which should perhaps be re-titled the Mismeasure of Our Species), in which he traces the history of and proceeds to debunk genetic determinism. E.O. Wilson, a biologist raised in the Southern Baptist tradition, proposes that the social gene is a more evolved and powerful determinant of species survival than the selfish gene.
Thanks for your attention.
On Sat, Apr 3, 2021 at 07:07 PM, Eva Lawrence wrote:
The configuration of the brain isn't as easily studied as the length of ones legs or ones nose, but clearly is also inherited in the same way.